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Running With The Wolves

Running With The Wolves

“How do you expect to run with the wolves come night when you spend all day sparrin' with puppies?"

Omar Little - The Wire (HBO television programme)

 

Omar Little gets it.

The fact that Omar Little makes a living stealing of drug dealers is irrelevant, Omar Little ‘gets it’.  So how and why does Omar Little ‘get it’?

Omar Little came to the ‘epiphany’ above when he was handed a drug dealers ‘stash’ when out for a stroll to collect the milk in the morning.

Omar didn’t have to ‘work’ for his corn this time, this ‘work’ usually involves an element of surprise, a rather large shot gun and meticulous planning. 

Omar has just spent the last few years running with wolves. These ‘wolves’ were known as the Barksdale crew, however their recent demise is making Omar’s ‘work’ easy. 

Omar ‘gets it’ because he realises that he is ‘sparring with puppies’ all day and has the potential to become ‘too soft’ when he wants/needs to start running with the wolves again.

What relevance does this have to golf I hear you ask? ….quite a lot actually.

 

“We are what we are because of stresses placed upon us and the adaptions we have made to these stresses both physical and otherwise. The state of our bodies, our minds and our personalities is the result of these adaptations”

James Counsilman (1968)

 

 

I see soo many golfers, especially aspiring professional golfers, that spend all day ‘sparrin with puppies’ and then ‘come night’ when they have to ‘run with the wolves’ get devoured.

 

So what does ‘sparring with puppies’ look like in golf if you are an aspiring professional golfer?

 

  • Playing consistently with golfers that are of a lower ability than you.
  • Playing short and easy golf courses.
  • Over specialising at one golf course, playing it over and over again.
  • Hitting balls over and over again on a driving range from the same lie with the same club, to the same target.
  • Spending most of your training time trying to perfect a technique.
  • Spending most of your training time practicing your A game, when your A game very rarely shows up.
  • Playing very little golf.
  • Practice environments that are devoid of decision making.
  • Practice environments that are devoid of emotion.
  • Practice environments that lack the intensity of your competitive environment.
  • Practice environments that don’t LOOK, SMELL and FEEL like the golf.

 

 So what does ‘running with wolves’ look like in golf if you are an aspiring professional golfer?

 

  • Playing and competing with golfers of a similar standard or better.
  • Playing a diverse range of golf courses.
  • Playing golf courses that are long or tight. Or both.
  • Practising in an environment that is rich with information similar to the golf course.

 

A practice environment that disrupts your game, much like competition, and pushes you away from your A game.

Therefore you ADAPT to the stresses put upon you.

Here is part of a session plan we use for aspiring pro golfers to help them get round the issue of ‘Playing with Puppies’ on short and wide open golf courses.

 

Running with the Wolves

  • Goal/Task – over 6 holes.
  • Goal = -1 for 6 holes

Constraints

  • +2 at any point in the task, start again.
  • Par 4’s

Right Rough Constraints (more than two club lengths in the rough penalty applies)

  • Pull back 100 yards (for holes shorter than 300 yards).
  • Pull back 70 yards (for holes shorter than 400 yards).
  • Pull back 40 yards (400-450 yards).

Left Rough Constraints (more than two club lengths in the rough penalty applies)

  • Pull back 80 yards (for holes shorter than 300 yards).
  • Pull back 60 yards (for holes shorter than 400 yards).
  • Pull back 30 yards (400-450 yards).

Fairway Constraints

  • Pull back 70 yards (for holes shorter than 300 yards).
  • Pull back 50 yards (for holes shorter than 400 yards).
  • Pull back 20 yards (400-450 yards).

 

Rationale for the game

This game above is tailored for a player that’s miss is predominately right. It is amazing what emerges out of the simple constraints above.

This game works all parts of players game as short courses generally have quite small greens (at least they do in Scotland).

Therefore the golfers are coming into small greens with longer irons and having to potentially change their movement (hit it higher) to ADAPT.

Also potentially missing more greens as a result.

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24 March 2017

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