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I’ve been playing golf for more than 25 years and I seriously can’t recall a time where I’ve ever needed all 14 clubs in my golf bag. The folks at Golfplan have recently asked a question of their readers if 14 clubs is too many to put in your bag. In my personal opinion, I definitely don’t think you need to lug that many sticks around on the course and chances are you typically don’t use five or six of them throughout a round.

So then, which clubs should you put in your bag. Well, I believe that answer totally relies on the course you are playing and where your strengths are. Do you really need three different wedges? Probably not, unless you are Phil Mickelson. If you’re playing a course you’ve played before a number of times, chances are you know the course well and know the types of shots you have to hit. If you are high handicapper, this may be a different story, as you probably can’t rely on consistency of where you’ll be on the course from time to time. But the course where I play most of my golf, I can safely get around with 8-10 clubs max.

If you learned to play as a kid as I did, you can probably remember having about four or five golf clubs in your tiny little bag. Those clubs usually consisted of a driver, a short iron, a mid iron, a long iron, and a putter. That was all you needed and you learned to be creative and to hit a lot of different shots with those clubs.

There’s a guy at my club who’s been known to get around the course with only a 5-iron. He gets off the tee with it, hits it from the fairway, and even putts with it. I should add that he also breaks 80 with only that said 5-iron. Sure, that’s a bit of an extreme case, but it goes to show you that depending on the course you are playing, and the level of your game, there’s a possibility that you can get by with maybe more than just half of your clubs that you normally put in your bag. So next time you are taking to the course, look through your clubs and try to mentally play your ideal round and decide if you really need that 5 iron that you can’t remember ever needing while playing that course.

What do you think your optimal number of clubs are to put in your bag for a round of golf?

adam-scott-golferIn his 14th year as a professional, Adam Scott’s climb to the top of the rankings has been a long and arduous process, but the Australian will know the battle isn’t just to reach number-one in the world but to stay at the top for a prolonged period of time. The 33-year old ended Tiger Woods’ latest spell as the world’s number-one, a run which had lasted 60 weeks, but it remains to be seen just how long Scott can now hang on to top spot, although a number of Betfair fans are backing Scott to be the man to fill the number one place for the foreseeable future.

While Woods has dominated the top spot of the rankings – and the Betfair odds – for much of the past decade, the number-one position has been passed around since the end of Tiger’s 281 week-stay between 2005-2010. Since 2010, Lee Westwood has twice found himself at the top of the tree, separated by a brief Martin Kaymer stint as number one, before Luke Donald and Rory McIlroy spent a year passing the number one spot back and forth before Woods’ returned from injury and restored order as golf’s dominant force.

In reaching the top of the world rankings for the first time, Scott has become only the 17th player to ever be No. 1 since the rankings started in 1983, and only the second Australian. Scott also became the 11th player to reach the top of the rankings in a week in which he wasn’t playing.

While Betfair fans will now be wondering how this will impact Scott’s preparations for this summer’s Open Championship at Royal Liverpool, the Aussie has insisted he is more focused on collecting the wins and letting the rankings take care of themselves.

“I hope I’m keeping myself in a similar kind of position for a while,” said Scott. “But I haven’t really thought about it too much. I’m really just into the process of trying to get my game better all the time. Pretty much wins takes care of all the rankings and all the questions,” said Scott.

You’ve heard the saying, “There’s an app for that”. Well as I’m sure we’ve all seen by now, usually there really IS an app for for just about everything. Now there’s a mobile app that will give you feedback on your golf swing by PGA Teaching Professionals by simply uploading a video of your swing to the app. It’s called the HC Golf App by HC Golf, LLC and it’s now available to the public on both iOS and Android devices.

This app is great for both the avid golfer, as well as the teaching professional. For the golfer it gives them a way to get advice and tips on how to fix flaws in their swing without having to spend the expensive fees of a private lesson. For the teachers, this gives them a MUCH broader reach to the golf population, rather than being confined to their geographic location.

I recently downloaded the app and my initial impression that it was pretty simple to use and understand what you need to do. Really, all you need to do is record your swing on the range or on the course…upload it to the app…pick and instructor from the list and then submit. Easy enough? Then the instructor edits the video along with his detailed feedback and sends back to you. The trickiest part of this may be getting your swing recorded, unless you have someone hold the phone and video it for you, as I had to do.

For Coaches/Instructors

As a professional coach or instructor, you need to apply to be a part of the app, but from what I can tell the process seems pretty simple. HC Golf says they typically get back to the applicants within a day or two. This really does provide another great way for them to broaden their reach and increase earning potential.

I should mention that students do need to pay a fee to receive the feedback from an instructor, and rates vary by instructor. Good news for the instructors is that they keep 80% of those fees, while 20% seems to go to HC Golf.

The app just launched in the last few days, and I think it has potential. Most of the success will be tied to the instructors who join the app and are available to the students. I’ve seen something similar to this done on Twitter with students posting still images to coaches who will provide relatively quick feedback on club position, ball position, etc. and I was impressed to see how many people took part and how immediate the feedback was. I haven’t seen another app like this out there, so HC Golf has the ability to make a name for themselves with this if they are able to build a strong community of students and teachers.

If you’d like to download the HC Golf App for your mobile device, you can do so for iOS here. To learn more about the app, I encourage you to check out their website.

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