Golf Tips Newsletter - Issue 405 - Wed. June 8th, 2016
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USGTF Class "A" Teaching Professional
WGTF "Top 100" Teacher
IGPA Certified Golf Psychology Coach


Prepare to play your best golf by doing something now!

Tom's Featured Tip: Necking The Driver
Tour Greens: Tour Quality Synthetic Greens
Tom's Bonus Tip: Goals and Putter Quandry
Lesson Comments: What Students Have To Say
Sponsors: Plum Creek Driving Range 
Batavia Country Club
Tour Greens Western New York 
Genesee Community College Golf Management Program 

Click here:  INDOOR GOLF LESSONS  for details on how to improve your game over the winter.

Plum Creek Driving Range, Batavia, NY, Open All Year
Simulator Course Play Specials: Call 585-993-0930 or Email Mark to reserve simulator time!

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Golf lessons - Outdoor and Indoor - are available at Plum Creek, please call me at 716 474 3005, email me at, or visit my website at   for details.

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Tom's Featured Tip: Necking The Driver

For simplicity, all advice on actual swings or drills is provided from a right handed perspective.

I recently had a driver swing lesson with a student that I work with on a regular basis.

His issue was one that creeps into his driver every now and then: he starts to lose his powerful draw and starts slipping into a weak fade.

That can happen for a lot of reasons, but for him it's usually one of two things: his swing path getting a little off, or "necking" his strikes.

"Necking" his strikes means that his ball to face contact on his driver is too much towards the neck of the club, way inside the sweet spot. We found that out through the process of elimination (golf is a game of discovery). First we eliminated the path issue, his swing radius and swing path were fine.

Next we sprayed Dr. Scholl's Foot Powder on the face of his club and saw the ball imprints were mostly falling way towards the shaft side of center, near the neck of the club so to speak.

Then we worked on two solutions.
  1. One was to take practice swings with his toes elevated on a pad. This drill keeps you from shifting your weight too much onto your toes in your downswing, too much towards the ball. This was modestly successful, but solution two worked better.

  2. The better solution for this student was the placement of his clubhead at address. He likes to rest the clubhead on the ground behind the ball at address, as do I. His problem was that he was resting the clubhead behind the ball in line with the sweet spot of the club. If you set up that way, when the club elevates in the swing the position of the sweet spot moves towards the neck of the club.

    Try it yourself - rest the clubhead behind the ball (left photo below), then lift it to where it will be at the strike (right photo below). The ball moves inward on the face.


    So, one solution is to hover the club behind the ball at address like Jack Nicklaus and Greg Norman did. They started out with the clubhead in the position where it would end up.

    If that doesn't feel natural to you (I personally don't like the feel of hovering) then set up with the club hovered behind the ball on the sweetspot (left photo below) , then lower it to rest gently on the ground behind the ball (right photo below). You'll see that it will now look like you have the ball positioned more towards the toe of the clubface, more outward from center.


    That's where it should be at setup for center face strikes, everything else being in line - swing radius and swing path.
If your driver has been leaking right with a slight fade, ball position in relation to your clubface at address may be the reason. Give this setup a try, I think you'll like it.


Love your practice, own your swing, own your health,


Tour Greens: Tour Quality Synthetic Greens For Superb Short Game Practice

Do you want one of these in your own back yard?

If you would like a free, no obligation quote for getting a beautiful practice area or putting green installed on your property - indoors or outdoors - give me (Tom Tucker) a call at (716) 474-3005, or email at at

For more information please click here:


Love your practice, own your swing, own your health,


Tom's Bonus Tip: Goals and Putter Quandry

For simplicity, all advice on actual swings or drills is provided from a right handed perspective.

As I've mentioned before in this newsletter, my main goal in golf has been to shoot my age - 69 (until October).

As I've also mentioned before in this newsletter, I am totally sold on the benefits of a positive balanced putter.

On the putter front, I bought a used Odyssey DFX 2-Ball Putter off EBay, an exact duplicate of the one I use - except for some weight that I added to the head when I fitted myself for the putter. Then I sent it to Mark Bernhadt at to have him convert it to a positive balanced putter. When all is said and done, I will have invested around $175 for this conversion, and I'm anticipating that it will be well worth it.

I want to preface the next section by saying that I have been practicing my putting at home with my SquareStrike™ putting training aid, and apparently it's paying off. I am still working on some production issues for the product, and at this time I have limited inventory. I'll announce when it's available.

On the goal front, I got the monkey off my back last weekend at Batavcia CC. The course was playing short due to hard fairways, which works well for my driver trajectory, a medium flighted draw. I call it a YOG ball, meaning yards on the ground after it lands.

I felt like I had a shot at my goal as I teed off on the ninth hole at one under, then I double bogeyed from the sand to shoot 37 on the front. I was disappointed to say the least.

On the back nine, however, I had a couple of nice up and downs and four birdies to shoot 32 and hit my mark of 69. I actually left one long birdie attempt in the hole, one inch short on number twelve, and left another birdie putt short about an inch on 18, but I was just lagging that one anyway to protect the score.

Obviously I'm thrilled at shooting my age, but how the heck can I take my current putter out of my hands?

I just got my hands on a Blast Motion Swing Analyzer which has a feature that measures backswing and forward swing face rotation of the putter, so I guess I'll test the newly balanced two ball when I get it against my trusty two ball and go from there.

One of my new goals is to develop an excellent sand game. I know how to do it, but I don't ever practice it and it shows. That changes for me right now, I'm adding bunker time to every range session.

I've also had a new set of single length irons in my basement for about five years and I haven't put them in play since I've gotten serious about shooting my age. Now that that's accomplished, it's time to give them a try. The concept has always made sense to me.

I'll keep you posted, keep practicing!


Love your practice, own your swing, own your health,


Golf Lessons

I conduct lessons at The Plum Creek Driving Range & Practice Facility
there's a link for Plum Creek info here:

Lessons are available for all ages and skill levels, please contact
me - Tom Tucker - at (716) 474 3005 or email me at
for more information.

Outdoor Lessons Details and Rates:

Indoor Lessons Details and Rates:

Driver Fitting Rates:



Plum Creek Driving Range and Simulator  Outdoor range and play indoor golf on any of our 40 Simulator Courses. Call 585-993-0930 or email Mark at to reserve time for simulator play or practice!

Batavia Country Club   (585) 343-7600
Great rates, the best greens in WNY. Golf Digest Four Star rating for public courses to play in New York State. Tee times online or by phone in season. BCC has a large supply of PING equipment in stock. Stop by and see what's new for 2016.

Tour Greens Western New York  Practice with purpose in your own back yard on your own synthetic practice green. Our greens LOVE Western New York weather!

Genesee Community College Golf Management Program   Click on link for more information if you or anyone you know is interested in a dynamic career in the golf industry, or in teaching golf.

All the best,

Tom Tucker
Teaching Pro, Plum Creek Driving Range & Practice Facility
WGTF ' "Top 100 Golf Teacher"
USGTF Class "A" Teaching Professional
IGPA Certified Golf Psychology Coach
Cell: (716) 474-3005

"There are no substitutes in the quest for perfection!"
~ Ben Hogan