Shorts vs. Longs

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Shorts vs. Longs

Postby klemle » Mon Mar 17, 2014 8:28 am

I am currently a 870 rated player who shoots Am 3 in most tournaments I play in. I just started shooting tournaments last year and shot my way out of Am 4 after the first sanctioned tourney I played in. Going into my first tournament I was nervous so I wasn't sure how I would stack up, but I am now fairly confident I can throw with most Am 3 players. This year I am hoping to shoot my way into Am 2 (obtain a 900 rating forcing me to throw Am 2) and when this happens, a lot of the tournaments I have been to have Intermediate players play either all longs or at least half longs. A lot of times when I go out and play, especially on new courses, I usually prefer to play the shorts so that I can maintain a sub par score. This helps me with my confidence, but as I get closer and closer to tournament time in Ohio, I know that if I shoot well in my first couple tournaments, I could very well be in Am 2 very soon. What I am asking for here is advice on how to transition into playing longs vs shorts. My mind set currently is if its not negative, it's not a good score. I want to break this habit, but I know I am going to have a lot of positive scores when I switch to throwing all longs. Does anyone have any advice on keeping a positive mental game, or even tricks to transitioning to throwing longer and tougher pads?
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby inthedrift » Mon Mar 17, 2014 4:48 pm

You definitely need to accept the fact that you may shoot over par most if not all of the time on longer course layouts. Par from the long tees at one of our local courses rates right around 1000 typically, and I'm sure the ratings on your local courses' longer tees might surprise you if you did a little research. I would suggest doing a lot of practice on these longer tee sets, throwing a few discs per hole and plotting potential landing zones and weighing the risks and rewards of various approaches to each hole.
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby discmonkey42 » Mon Mar 17, 2014 8:49 pm

Play from the longs but don't keep score. Focus more on shot selection and execution. Think of it as field work on the course. Do that a few times and the good shots you threw during the round will give you the confidence you need. When you keep score, you'll let the score make you completely forget anything that went well for you.

Once you are comfortable with your shots, keep score again. But inthedrift is spot on. You have to practice them and stop cheating yourself by playing the shorts all the time.

This might sound weird, but try playing the course backwards once. Playing holes from basket to tee makes some holes you thought were hard much easier. You see lines and shot placement you never saw playing from the tee. Might help take away some of the difficulty your mind has attached to the tee position.

Keep at it!
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby klemle » Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:37 am

Thanks, those are both really helpful. I agree that sometimes I get to caught up with my score even during practice rounds that I lose focus on just trying to improve my game. Where exactly could I look to find the rating for different courses? I think that you are right that doing some research on local courses could put my mind at ease, and give me realistic goals to aim for during a round.
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby Mark Ellis » Sat Mar 22, 2014 8:35 am

klemle wrote:Thanks, those are both really helpful. I agree that sometimes I get to caught up with my score even during practice rounds that I lose focus on just trying to improve my game. Where exactly could I look to find the rating for different courses? I think that you are right that doing some research on local courses could put my mind at ease, and give me realistic goals to aim for during a round.


Par doesn't matter. Ratings don't matter. What matters is that you throw good shots. Concentrate on learning shots and developing consistency in throwing good shots time after time. Ratings will come, skills will come, scores will come with effort and dedication.

You have no control over how your opponents shoot. So don't worry about it. You only have control over your own game and that is where your attention should lie. If you continually get better then your will have success as you move up division to division to eventually the ranks of the Pros. If you don't improve then you are destined for mediocrity/suckage forever.

You cannot allow yourself to be intimidated. Certainly not by Am 3's! I remember my first tournament, I had only been playing the game for a week at that point, and I was so impressed with the quality of my competition. Damn those guys were good, I thought. Actually I was wrong. They were marginal at best. Years later most of those same players were still competing in Am 3 and continued to wallow in mediocrity. The ones who put in the effort got better.

By putting in time and effort and practice a healthy person should be able to raise their ratings into the 900's. This is a small but obtainable goal. Plan to reach it and then set your sights higher for the next level. Ask yourself, why should you suck forever? Look around you at a tournament. Do the players in the divisions above you look like world class athletes? Or do they look like normal players who have put in more time and effort than you?

To become a top Pro it requires both effort and superb, innate athletic skills. Average athletes can rise to Am 1 merely with practice.

So yes, play longs. And shorts. And made up holes. Play with the best players you can and learn from them.
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby inthedrift » Sun Mar 23, 2014 7:30 pm

Great response Mark. :D
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby aithos » Sun May 04, 2014 9:52 pm

I agree with everything Mark is saying. To expand on one of his comments "Play with the best players you can and learn from them." this is one of the most under-estimated aspects of improving at any athletic hobby.

You can be incredibly driven and passionate and put in countless hours of practice but there is one universal truth: if you are practicing poor mechanics or doing the wrong things you will not get better. The only way to know if you are doing things right/wrong is by playing with people better than you to watch them and have them watch you and tell you how you can make adjustments. I am also a passionate fan of golf and I can't tell you how many people I've run into over the years who spend hours every week on the range pounding balls with a horrible golf swing and go out every weekend and shoot 100+ on the course. Meanwhile, after nearly a 5 year gap of playing (when I couldn't afford to play) I went from shooting over 100 to nearly breaking 80 in a single summer. Why? I played with people who were better than me, I took some lessons from a local pro who could point on swing issues and I made sure the time I spent practicing was actually improving a part of my game and not just solidifying bad habits.

That's the key point I want you to take from my post: make sure the practice you're doing is based on doing things the right way for your body/game. Find a pro who has a similar body type and throwing style and try to break down their form so you understand it and then emulate or improve it for your throw. Understand the different grips, understand the basics of posture and each part of the throw. Don't just throw 200 putts a day, make sure the putts you practice are using good form with balance, weight transfer and as little extra factors as possible. Don't just go throw 100 drives into a field, make sure your posture is good at each step of the throw, ingrain the feeling of a properly timed release and make sure each of those 100 are GOOD ones. The result doesn't matter because line (hyzer, straight, anhyzer), wind and disc choice can affect where it lands. What matters in practice is good form, good timing and proper release. If you can repeat a good throw every single time you'll get the shots to land where you want as you learn your discs.
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby eegor » Mon May 12, 2014 6:25 pm

My friends and I make a habit of playing both sets of tees when we go to a course and play two rounds. We don't want to play a complete round from the longs and get beaten down, so we play "long odds" (long tees on odd numbered holes) the first round and "short odds" (short tees from the odd numbered holes) the second round. The course difficulty is about the same in both rounds and you get to play all of the tee positions.

It makes for two fun rounds with a lot more challenge than only playing the short tees every time. We're a group of grandmasters, so the long tees are a challenge for us and they seperate our scores a little better than just playing the shorts. (We've all been playing a long time and there are a lot of identical scores in the short game for us.)
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby Kane7 » Tue Jul 01, 2014 3:24 am

Nice post!
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby Stringbean » Wed Jul 09, 2014 10:33 am

I got my ass kicked on the longs at my local course yesterday. From the short wooded holes, there are tight distinguished lines... then the longs are about 30-50 feet back. The hard part is they have trees between the two tees which makes it impossible to hit the same lines.

I was just focusing on trying to get as far down the fairway as I could without hitting a tree and then praying for a clear line to the basket to save par. I was -6 from the shorts and +9 from the longs. Humbling experience but now I want to go back and try to improve.
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Re: Shorts vs. Longs

Postby NoMoreTinCup » Fri Jul 11, 2014 7:30 pm

As my skills improved, I realized that playing from longer tees or just a more challenging set, makes you play better golf. Deuce or die courses are not my thing, wooded or open. I want a course that requires good, calculated decisions and execution, again, regardless of the terrain/hole type. I am lucky enough to live in a place where I have those options. I look at it like this.......
A good round on a longer/harder course feels better than a good round on a shorter/easier course, and a bad round on a longer/harder layout feels better than a bad round on a shorter/easier layout. Scoring average is on your side.

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