The Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy Director, Doug Weaver, a former PGA Tour player, recommends a handful of New Year’s Resolutions to help you enjoy your golf game more in 2017.
To schedule a lesson with Doug Weaver or any other Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy instructor or learn more about the Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy, call (866) 744-7558.
Golf at Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort will be back starting Thursday, Dec. 1, with the reopening of the Robert Trent Jones and Arthur Hills courses, along with the Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy. During storm cleanup following Hurricane Matthew, all three of the resort’s world-class layouts were overseeded — tee boxes, fairways and greens — so they will be in lush condition and fully playable this holiday season.
“Palmetto Dunes golf is back,” said long-time Director of Golf Clark Sinclair. “Golfers are going to find some lush, green courses and no issues with cart paths or anything else. We are very excited.”
Book your tee time today and take advantage of special December rates.
Palmetto Dunes features a trio of golf courses designed by three of the game’s most unique architects — Robert Trent Jones Sr., George Fazio and Arthur Hills — all three of which have been awarded the Palmetto State’s “Golf Course of the Year” by the South Carolina Board of Directors of the National Golf Course Owners Association.
The Jones Course was ranked No. 9 in Golfweek magazine’s 2016 rankings of the “Best Courses You Can Play in South Carolina” and recently cracked Golfweek’s Top 100 of “Best Resort Courses in the United States.”
In October, Condé Nast Traveler named Palmetto Dunes a “Top 20 Best Resort in the South.”
For more than a half-century Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort has represented the best Hilton Head has to offer. Generations of families from across the globe have enjoyed the resort’s seemingly infinite bounty of outdoor activities with a family focus: Outstanding golf and award-winning tennis, fishing, kayaking, canoeing and paddle boarding on an 11-mile lagoon system, bicycling, dining and shopping, all of it along a three-mile stretch of pristine Atlantic Ocean beachfront.
Given our love of golf, all of us at Palmetto Dunes are excited about this week’s Ryder Cup matches at Minnesota’s Hazeltine National Golf Club. With the Ryder Cup in mind, we turned to our longtime Director of Instruction, Doug Weaver, a former PGA Tour player, to pick his brain about some keys to successful match-play competition. Here are a dozen of Doug’s suggestions for how to succeed in match-play golf:
1. Expect the best
Rehearse with visualization days before the round hitting every fairway green and making every putt. This is more important than beating balls on the range. The visualization will engage every part of your brain, which gives instruction to your muscles. While visualizing each individual shot, take time to feel the physical sensations. These feelings are equal to pictures. We all agree a picture is worth a thousand words. Rehearse being behind and then coming back to win. In your imagination act like steady Nick Faldo coming from four behind to beat overly aggressive Greg Norman.
2. Prepare for the worst
Fred Funk shared that he expects to win by hitting every fairway and green and making every putt. However, he prepares by practicing his short game from all the worse case positions.
3. Ride your emotions
If you feel success, go for it by playing to your strengths and avoiding your weakness. If you play a fade then on every dogleg right for a right-handed player, go for it. However on a dogleg left play to the corner and accept the longer distance on your approach shot. If the pin is on the right, go for it. If he pin is on the left go for the center.
4. Confront gamesmanship
Paul Azinger and Seve Ballesteros both are fierce competitors. Paul confronted Seve for clearing his throat in Chip Beck’s backswing. It did not happen again. Be social with your caddy or invite a friend to observe and be social with them. Talking with your opponent may cause you to lose your game face.
5. In one ear and out the other
Opponents may make statements that seem friendly and complimentary. However these statements can be intended to change your focus. Beware of, “I love your backswing,” which may be intended to get you thinking about your swing and not playing the game. Do not listen to comments about course conditions like wind or green firmness: “The greens are slow” or “the sand is firm.” Be objective, gather your own information and make your own decisions.
6. Dance with the one you brought
Accept the game you have today. Be patient waiting for the momentum to turn your way. In one famous Ryder Cup moment, Justin Leonard missed 13 fairways and 13 greens but got up and down 13 times to stay in the match. The 14th green he hit and made par. The 15th green he hit and birdied to go on to victory.
7. Ask for change
My playing opponent jingled his change occasionally. I asked “Do you have change for two dollars?” He said “No.” I said, “Here are two dollars for whatever you have.” No more jingling.
8. Know where your handicap strokes come
Study the card knowing the handicapping, the opponent may not pay attention and forget where the strokes are. Golf is a numbers game. Keep the score.
9. Know when to “hold 'em” and when to “fold 'em”
On difficult holes it may be wise to play to your strengths understanding your opponent’s weakness. Lay up or play to the center when the risk reward is too high. Take the tie or victory but do not give it away because your ego wants to go.
10. Understand your personality
A student’s personality plays a significant role in how I coach them to plan and play in match play. My training with MentalGolfWorkshop.com helps me design a strategy to overcoming the opponent’s playing style and personality characteristics. We teach this class at Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy and most students confess they have people they love to play with and people they dread playing with. Similarly, we all have holes we play well and holes we regularly explode on. After this class you learn how to score lower than your comfort zone. You will not be influenced by your opponent, but influence the opponent. The late, great Arnold Palmer’s and Tiger’s charisma won many matches for them. Fred Funk saw this and intentionally befriended Tiger and therefore learned to play his best with the No. 1 player in the world.
Most courses are set up daily with six easy holes, six medium holes and six difficult holes. Know where they are by asking for a pin placement sheet. Also, by driving the course or neighborhood, looking at the tee markers and the pins. The caddies do it. Why not you?
12. Play a Par 4 as a Par 5
The 18th hole of the Fazio is the No. 2 handicap hole. Sometimes play it as a par 5 and never make a six. When players go for this green in two shots, they easily can make a six. This is the same at No. 12 on the Hills Course, the No. 2 handicap hole, as well as No. 14 on the Jones Course.
There is so much to do when visiting us this spring! For those of you counting down the days until you arrive to gorgeous Hilton Head Island and Palmetto Dunes, we’ve compiled a spring to-do list for you. See how many you can complete and let us know:
What’s missing from our Palmetto Dunes To-Do List? Is there anything your family cannot leave the resort without doing?
To book your Palmetto Dunes vacation this spring, visit www.palmettodunes.com or call us at 866-650-4130.
In a recent blog post, we provided you with video answers to some of your most pressing golf questions. Now, we’ve compiled some tips from Palmetto Dunes Director of Golf Instruction and former PGA pro Doug Weaver to help you do everything from perfect your putt to refine your swing in the New Year.
Here are 15 golf tips from Doug to get you off to a great start on the green:
1. Let others watch the ball. If you look up, you will not like what you see.
2. Listen for the putt to drop. When you turn to watch the ball go in, that action changes your alignment. Looking up usually happens before impact, therefore causing stroke misdirection and missing the sweet spot.
3. Tell one joke per round. The benefits of laughing will lower your score. Laughing produces a sense of well-being, lowers the heart rate and stress hormone levels. It also releases endorphins that are natural pain relievers. Also, you will more than likely to be invited back to play, regardless of your score.
4. When it’s breezy, swing easy. When you swing at pace of 70 percent, you are more likely to strike the sweet spot. The sweet spot produces more distance and imparts a spin on the ball that aids in overcoming the influence of the wind.
5. Remember that golf is a game of opposites. The harder you try, the worse you do. This always gets giggles, and all golfers say it is true.
6. Visit www.mentalgolfworkshop.com (password palmetto). Yogi Berra said, "Golf is 90 percent mental and the other 10 percent requires a lot of thinking.”
7. Watch the movie Seven Days in Utopia. Robert Duvall is the star, along with a number of PGA Tour players. Put yourself in the character of Lucas Black.
8. Attend the Free Golf Class at the Robert Trent Jones Golf Course on Mondays from 4 to 5 p.m. It’s hands-on, interactive and you may even win a prize
9. Take a golf lesson from a pro who keeps it simple. The fewer the words, the better. After all, actions speak louder than words.
10. Understand that putting correctly will help your driver go farther. Golf is actually much simpler than most think. The fundamentals of excellent putting can be applied to improve your driver as well.
11. Transfer your present skills into golf. What hobbies or skills do you have? We can take the fundamentals of that skill and transfer the principals into golf. For example, when your posture and hand placement are done correctly, this leads to unconscious finger movement and minimal errors.
12. Read fewer golf books. An ancient Chinese proverb says, “experiencing is the best way to learn.” An effective coach will have you experiencing successful golf with a hands-on method in much less time.
13. Trust a proven coach for all areas of your game. Jordan Speith expresses significant gratitude to his entourage.
14. Perspire 15 minutes before you practice and play. The perspiration tells you your body has blood flowing to all your joints, ligaments and tendons and to every brain cell. You are ready to swing fluidly, creating effortless power not powerless effort.
15. Attend the Palmetto Dunes Golf Forum on February 24. This will be an evening of golf entertainment, education and enjoyment.
January and February are great months to play golf on HIlton Head Island, says Doug. Book your tee times at one of our three championship Hilton Head golf courses, or sign up for lesson, golf school or clinic at the Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy.
True, we may be showing our age by referencing the old TV action hero who made a name for himself, literally, through his ability to seemingly escape any jam with nothing more than … say … a small paperclip and a piece of chewing gum. But as you will see, the MacGyver-like ability to “get creative” when planning golf trips can be very helpful.
MacGyver didn't have the power of the internet. However, he was always prepared. Imagine how easy it would have been to plan his annual buddy golf trip had he possessed the powerful tools offered by Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort on Hilton Head Island.
This year, impress your golf buddies by planning a trip MacGyver-style, but just don't let them know how easy it was!
1) Newly launched Website with quick quoting capabilities
Planning a Hilton Head Island golf vacation just got even easier with a new user-friendly and device responsive website for Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort. The new website, located at www.palmettodunes.com, lets guests sort almost 150 Hilton Head vacation homes and rentals by date, location, view and number of people each unit can accommodate. Users can now also reserve golf tee times, bikes, kayaks, canoes, paddleboards, beach chairs and more via the click of the mouse.
The website can be easily viewed and navigated across a variety of electronic devices, including desktops, laptops, tablets and mobile devices. Other features include a new easy-to-navigate resort calendar that helps users view the variety of events taking place at Palmetto Dunes during their vacation, which can include nearly 30 tennis clinics weekly, along with golf clinics, dining specials, live music, family events at Palmetto Dunes' waterfront Shelter Cove Harbour and others.
2) Online planning resources to make trip planning easy
Indeed, you really don't need more than a phone or a computer to “MacGyver” your next Hilton Head Island golf trip. Don't desire to lug your golf clubs? The Palmetto Dunes Rental Club Program is a far cry from the worn-out, no name sets available elsewhere. Only full sets of the very latest clubs from top brands TaylorMade, Nike, and Cobra are offered to visiting golfers in need of equipment. Or you can ship your clubs directly to our courses with ease using our partner Shipticks. Ground shipping is as low as $39.99.
The new Palmetto Dunes website's interactive map allows users to clearly view and highlight the location of various activities and hubs within the resort, including its three championship golf courses, Palmetto Dunes Tennis Center, oceanfront Dunes House restaurant and meeting venue, Hilton Head Outfitters, bike paths, beach access points and more. Viewers can also see where specific neighborhoods and vacation units are located within the resort and their proximity to different activities.
3) Pre-plan the games your group can play while at Palmetto Dunes
During peak times when activities and gear can easily sell out, the ability to quickly reserve your rentals and tee times online in advance helps guests ensure they have access to the activities most important to them. The new website simplifies the vacation preparation process for busy guests and makes it easier to plan their activities and schedule ahead of time.
Golfers can watch virtual flyovers of the three resort golf courses, see maps of each hole and sneak a peek at the immensely popular Robert Trent Jones golf course web cam, watching golfers start and conclude their rounds.
4) Scout out how to play each hole on the free golf mobile app to gain an extra advantage
Always striving to remain ahead of the golf industry curve, Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort has created a free golf app for a golfer's smartphone that MacGyver would have loved: The app answers questions in real time such as: “What’s the best way to play this hole? How will I ever get around that sand trap?” Or perhaps, “I’m getting hungry. Wonder where can I get lunch or a cold drink after I get this hole-n-one?”
In addition, golfers can keep track of yardage with the app’s built-in GPS and enter their score into a mobile scorecard that also allows them to engage in live competition with others on their golf buddy trip. Use the app to check information about each hole on each course (par, handicap and playing tips), and when you make that ace, the app makes it easy to brag about it on Facebook.
5) Talk to the group golf planning experts to put the finishing touches on the perfect golf trip
Along with its trio of world-class golf courses, Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort features an 11-mile inland salt-water lagoon system, an award-winning tennis center, a Mediterranean-style marina featuring shopping and dining, and an outdoor adventure center for bike rentals, canoes, kayaks, fishing and much more. Earn preferred rates and priority access for golf, tennis bikes and more, along with up to 20% off resort dining and select retail with charging privileges and booking tips from the island experts.
So grab your Swiss Army Knife and make MacGyver proud … along with your friends and family … when you plan your next golf trip to the Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort.
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Just in time for the holidays, we’ve got some help for your golf woes. If you’ve got a burning question or were always curious about some aspect of your golf game, let our head of golf instruction and former PGA pro Doug Weaver come to the rescue.
Send us your golf questions via Facebook, Twitter or Google + by Dec. 15 and you’ll not only be entered to win 2 of Doug’s instructional golf DVDs, but you’ll get your question answered personally – via video – by Doug!
Doug, who is a US Open record holder, offers many great tips to golfers of all ages in his many videos on our YouTube account, as well as in his free weekly Hilton Head golf demonstration on Mondays and the many Hilton Head golf schools and clinics he leads every week.
Take a look at this recent video from Doug showing you how to put like Rory McIlroy:
His DVDs focus on full swing and the short game, and if you purchase your own copy before Christmas, you will receive a questionnaire and 15-minute phone consult with Doug to help lower your scores and increase your enjoyment of golf. As Doug likes to say “Golf is not an easy game, but it is a game of ease.”
Submit your questions soon and good luck!
Doug Weaver knows golf, particularly Hilton Head Island golf, as well as anyone. A former PGA Tour professional, Weaver has served as the highly respected director of instruction at Palmetto Dunes for years. His free Monday golf exhibition every week is one of our most popular attractions.
Improving your golf game is something very important to Weaver, a man once best known as the answer to a trivia question. As a PGA Tour rookie in 1989, during a breathtaking span of just under two hours, Weaver became one of four U.S. Open contenders at Oak Hill Country Club to ace the sixth hole. (Nick Price, Jerry Pate and Mark Wiebe were the other three; Weaver got his first.)
The event became the highlight of a what-might-have-been professional career for Weaver, who first moved to Hilton Head as a 17-year-old prep athlete to attend Sea Pines Academy. He later played at Furman University alongside a guy named Brad Faxon, but when graduation rolled around, Weaver wasn’t confident about his chances on the PGA Tour.
He moved back to Hilton Head, manned the bag drop at our Robert Trent Jones golf course and pondered his future. “I would play in amateur tournaments, get frustrated and say, ‘I don’t want to play anymore,’” Weaver says.
Instead, he helped found the Hilton Head Island Intercollegiate Golf Tournament at Palmetto Dunes, which later grew to become the Golf World Intercollegiate, one of the then biggest amateur tournaments in the country. During that time, Weaver mustered the courage — and the game — to tackle professional golf. “At first I couldn’t break 80 because I was so nervous,” he says. “But gradually I started to work my scores down to where I was in contention against veteran players.”
His mini-tour breakthrough came in 1987 at the Zell Wood Country Club Open in Florida, where — despite playing in a final group with three former PGA Tour pros — Weaver birdied the 72nd hole to capture his first title. “I knew then that I could play with these guys and beat them,” says Weaver. And beat them he did, winning 14 mini-tour events and earning his PGA Tour card in 1988.
Once he reached the professional Mecca, Weaver flirted with success, making about a third of the cuts in tournaments he played and missing a number of others by a shot. But a PGA Tour victory eluded him and his full-time status on tour only lasted a year. Nevertheless, it was an experience that Weaver firmly believes trained him well for his ultimate calling.
“I didn’t fulfill my potential, but the mistakes I made are ones I can help others from making today,” he says. “Hey, I played a practice round with Tom Watson at Pebble Beach. I played with Lee Trevino at the Buick Open, and was in the top-10 after Saturday’s round. I played in two U.S. Opens and practiced with greats like Vijay Singh and Payne Stewart for many long sessions.
“Today, I ask my students, ‘How much are you willing to invest?’ I know what it takes, and if you aren’t willing, I can help you with another game plan. But let’s be realistic and enjoy the journey,” says Weaver. “That’s what I want to bring to the table at Palmetto Dunes: Here’s a little mental stuff, here’s the workout stuff, here’s the top-notch technology to teach our students how to reach their potential and have fun doing it.”
To sign up for one of Doug Weaver’s free Monday clinics or any of our other golf clinics, call us at 866-650-4130 or visit www.palmettodunes.com.
We hope to see you on our three championship golf courses soon making some powerful shots! For more information about private golf lessons or Hilton Head golf clinics to improve your swing, view the Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy schedule or call us at 866-650-4130.
Of course, if you want to be like Rory, it doesn’t hurt to use Nike clubs and wear Nike apparel, too. The Palmetto Dunes golf pro shop at the Robert Trent Jones golf course is one of only six Nike Golf TTC Concept shops across the U.S. where you can find plenty of Nike gear.
If you want to learn to play like Rory, look no farther than the Palmetto Dunes Golf Academy. Call us at 866-650-4130 to schedule your private lesson today!