How to Play Shots From the Sand Trap, Like a Pro

Fear Not The Bunker, Senior Golfers.

When you hole out a bunker shot, it is the GREATEST feeling (in golf) but the bunker shot can be a golfer’s worst nightmare as well. So let’s learn how to make the sand our friend. If we can remove the fear with the correct practice, fear will become confidence and confidence breeds success. So let’s do that now.

Have No Fear.

Fear Not ‘The Sand’ but become the Master of the Sand.

You can spend the money for a few lessons from your pro and that is fine as long as they are instilling confidence and not fear of getting out. We must eliminate the doubt of the bunker shot. Easy to say but how do we do that? The main reason golfers have problems getting out of the bunker is because of fear of leaving the ball in the bunker. We are defeated before we even swing the club. What we need to do is get past that fear and if we learn the proper way to hit even the easiest shot out of the bunker, that is one less thing you will have to worry about in your golf game.

PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE.

Aside from my golf tips, practice is the best way to master that dreaded bunker shot. Spend some time in the practice bunker hitting all types of lies. Learn how the bounce on your club works and how to use it properly. Do you know what degree of bounce is on your sand wedge, pitching wedge, and lob wedge?

If not ask your pro. what they are. Once you know the bounce of each club then you can start to practice to see how bounce affects your shots.

Here is a drill that will work miracles on your sand game.

Draw a straight line (perpendicular to target line) about 3 feet long in the sand with a second line starting at the end of the first line but gradually going out on a slight angle (think 1/2 V shape) until the line is three inches behind your first line. Practice entering the sand on the angled (back) line with the bottom of your divot being 3-4 inches in front of the entry point.

Practice doing that until you can consistently hit the angled line. Now place golf balls about 4 inches apart just on the front edge the first (straight) line that you drew in the sand. Starting with the ball nearest you, hit the sand at that point behind the golf ball.That shot should travel 15-20 yards, move down the line hitting the angled line on each ball. See how they all travel different distances?

MASTER THE SAND.

This is how to eliminate the fear of bunkers. If you can spend 30 minutes practicing that drill, the next time you are in a bunker, your brain will take over and hit the sand in the correct place.

This drill is one that I have taught to my golf buddies and many other golfers. It works every time but you must dig it out of the sand.

It is exciting to watch one of my buddies that could not get out of a bunker to save his life, all of a sudden, he is full of confidence and has no fear of bunkers. You will do the same thing with just a few minutes of correct practice.

FORGET WHAT YOU SEE THE PRO’S DO.

Too often, recreational golfers try to mimic what the pros do in the bunker. Golf pros spend hours practicing bunker shot. Most amateurs do not have that luxury, but a few minutes a week will work wonders as long as we practice correctly. Stop making the shot harder than it really is. Take a bit wider stance so your hips can move freely, swing with your shoulders instead of all arms much like a short pitch shot and strike a few inches behind the ball as discussed in the previous paragraph.

KNOW THE SAND.

Different lies and sand conditions affect a bunker shot more than putting the right swing on the ball. Soft, fluffy sand calls for a contact spot further behind the ball. After some rain, a bunker can become hard and compact. This is where knowing the bounce on your different clubs will make a huge difference. If you try a normal bunker shot, your club could bounce off of the hard sand, make solid contact with the ball and send it flying over the green. In this case, use a club with less bounce so it will dig in behind the ball and not bounce into the golf ball. The ball will come out with less spin, so allow more distance before the hole for the ball to land. This is something you should practice when the sand is wet and firm but do not fear the sand.

LIES, LIES, LIES.

The lie of the ball can be your best friend or worst enemy. Your ball can be in the bunker, without room to actually stand in it for a shot. In this case, widen your stance and bend your knees drastically. Avoid bending at the waist because doing so will not allow you to use your upper body in your swing. Swing with your arms and shoulders with your feet still. Let the club slide under the ball like a normal bunker shot.

If your ball is plugged in the bunker, you have some decisions to make. If half of your ball is showing, you can still get out in good condition.

Play the ball back in your stance, pick your club straight up and slam it down right behind the ball.

If the ball is completely buried you may have to take your medicine (an unplayable) or if you have practiced this shot, you know, it will still come out but it takes a lot of speed and you need to allow for lots of roll.

DO NOT QUIT ON A BUNKER SHOT.

Fairway bunker shots are among the hardest in golf. Too often, golfers think they must always use a sand wedge in the sand. For the long bunker shots, use any club that will clear the lip on the bunker. You can hit hybrids out of fairway bunkers as long as you can clear the lip. I play the ball in the middle of my stance so I can ensure ball first contact. Practice will show you where you should play the golf ball. This shot is played with what I call still legs. All the movement should be from the hips up. Play the ball in the middle of your stance so you can contact the ball first.

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Ultimate Tips for Safe Summer Swimming

Swimming is the ultimate summer activity and you have likely already discovered that your kids turn into little fish the moment that school lets out for break. While they only notice the fun involved with a splash in the pool, you know that their safety is the first priority. As your kids don their goggles and swimsuits, use these tips to ensure that everyone stays safe in the water this season.

Have Safety Equipment Available

Life jackets are a must when your kids go swimming. However, many parents overlook other essential pieces of safety equipment that should be near every body of water. At a new swimming pool, make sure reaching and throwing equipment is easily accessible along with a well-stocked first-aid kit. Supervising adults should also have a cell phone nearby to contact emergency services if a need arises.

Watch the Weather

Summer storms are unfortunately common in many parts of the country, so it is important to keep an eye on the forecast. Teach your kids to exit the pool immediately at the first sign of lightning. Your kids should also understand to never go swimming in natural bodies of water during a storm since water levels can quickly rise to dangerous levels.

Protect Delicate Skin

Kids love summer but a nasty sunburn can ruin their fun for several weeks. Unfortunately, they will likely forget to reapply sunscreen periodically during their swimming sessions without a reminder. Set a timer if necessary and follow the instructions on the sunscreen regarding how often to apply it after exposure to water. For extra protection, try to minimize swimming sessions during the hottest part of the day, and shower after swimming to remove chlorine from skin since it can cause a rash on sensitive individuals.

Practice Swimming at Summer Camp

When it comes to swimming, professionally taught lessons are essential for your child’s safety. At summer camp, kids get the opportunity to swim every day and sometimes even twice a day. They also have the ability to swim in either a heated indoor pool or a natural lake so they are comfortable in different types of swimming conditions. Since lifeguards and coaches at camp are trained in CPR and First-Aid and are always there to supervise the kids, this is one of the safest ways to learn to swim.

Follow Posted Safety Signs

Whenever your child visits a new swimming facility, take a few minutes to help them become familiar with the safety rules. For example, signs warning not to dive should be taken seriously because the water may be too shallow for head-first diving. At water parks, kids should follow the posted guidelines regarding age and size limitations before playing on slides and other aquatic rides.

Swimming offers many benefits for kids including the opportunity to engage in physical activity while socializing with friends. In all the excitement, however, kids can sometimes lose sight of safety as they splash and play in the water. By making sure to review the safety rules with your kids, and maintaining their skills through supervised swimming opportunities, you can be certain that your kids are safe as they enjoy their favorite summer activity.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9513634

5 Tips to Follow While Buying Your First Road Bike

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When you are in the process of buying your first road bike, there are a few important tips that you must take into consideration. These include the materials, the type of bikes in your range and component options. The whole process can at times be overwhelming. A few important tips have been explained as below.

1. Decide your budget

The cost of the road bikes can range a lot. Hence, you need to decide how much you are actually prepared to spend. There are decent road bikes that start from a meagre amount and up to thousands of pounds or dollars. You need to remember that the more amount of money you spend, the lighter and better your bike is going to be.

2. Do a proper research

By keeping the budget in mind, you should also do some research. For a fact, you can also walk down to the nearest store and get yourself a road bike and there is nothing wrong with that. But a bicycle is a great investment and it is worth to spend some time doing a full-fledged research.

3. The frame materials

The frame of your road bike is its heart. This is where the majority of your budget goes. These are made from a range of materials, the most common being aluminum, steel, titanium and carbon fibre. The frames that are made from any particular material will have various common characteristics, although what a designer does with a material is as important as the material itself.

Choose the right size

This is extremely critical as it can make or break your investment. You also need to take advice from the bike shop. Also don’t go for a bike that is too small or too large for you simply because it is available at a cheaper cost. A bike that is of the correct size with appropriate dimensions and height will make you get the most out of it.

4. Bike fits services

Make good use of this service. Almost all the shops these days provide this service. They will give you expert advice and also enable you to get yourself fit on the bike. This will help you to leave as a happy customer. There are also various parts of the bike that one can change to help find an appropriate fit. A good and well- renowned bike shop will be invaluable here.

5. The components of your bike

The manufacturers of your bike components assemble their parts into various group sets. This includes a collection of gear parts and brakes that are matched for function and quality and both designed to work together. Make sure the components are of good quality.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9563393

Safe Holiday Swimming Advice

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Planning to go on holiday where the seas are warm, crystal clear and stunningly blue?

Then you’ve made the right choice! The sea is one of humanity’s great resources and a natural blessing. That’s why it’s important to protect and cherish our seas but of course, your safety is also important.

So, here are a number of advice pointers about safe sea bathing – aimed particularly at those visiting tropical coastlines.

Know your limitations

Swimming in warm seas can be more draining than in more temperate waters.

If you normally spend your life in an office or other relatively sedentary occupation, then launching into Olympic-level swimming objectives could mean you quickly get into difficulties with cramp or exhaustion.

There’s no recommendation here other than “don’t do it” and to stay conservative in terms of what you’re trying to achieve in terms of distance, speed or sea conditions. In particular, remember that a pool is not the open sea, so your performance in the former might not be a perfect guide to your capabilities in the ocean.

Sharks

Most experts agree that the media tends to massively exaggerate the risks from shark attacks which are, even in tropical waters, comparatively rare.

Even so, that’s no consolation to someone who has suffered such an attack. Many species of shark are predators and like it or not, we share our seas with them.

However, the risks can be reduced by following local safety advice and guidance. Seasons can make a huge difference, as do specific locations. Some beaches have effective protection and supervision in place but that won’t count for much if you ignore local safety rules or don’t even consult them to start with.

Stinging Risks

Some marine life is equipped with mechanisms for inflicting stings of one variety or another.

In some instances that’s for hunting and in others for self-defence. It doesn’t matter which for humans though because what’s important is not to get stung.

Yet again, this is a question of being sensible and taking local advice. Don’t listen to that “friend of a friend who knows someone that told them” expert. People in your holiday area or those providing your luxury holiday accommodation will know exactly what needs to be done to reduce or avoid altogether such risks.

Many beaches are protected by nets of one sort or another. In other situations, some seasons are known to have higher risks of such populations coming inshore whilst at other times of the year the risks are virtually zero. If you are planning to spend a lot of time in the water away from beaches, a wet suit (of suitable grade) is usually great protection.

The bottom line is – ask around.

Boats

In many countries, the laws governing what boats can and cannot do in swimming areas are strict and complied with by local people.

Sadly, in some countries such laws either don’t exist or are widely ignored. This can and does lead to serious or even fatal accidents for swimmers when boat operators start behaving like idiots.

Keep away from sea areas designated as being for leisure boat operations – there are usually indications on beaches and buoys at sea marking channels etc. In addition, keep your eyes open. If you see a boat owner flagrantly ignoring the rules and endangering bathers as a result, memorize their boat’s name or number and report them to the authorities.

Avoid Alcohol

Today, the old advice of avoiding swimming on a full stomach is widely considered to be an old wives tale by experts.

Having said that, few people would argue that swimming (or exercising for that matter) immediately after a full meal is likely to make you feel uncomfortable and possibly risk some cramping. Well worth avoiding in the sea!

However alcohol is different and has been well documented as having been a contributory factor in many drownings for one reason or another. Therefore avoid it if you’re planning to go swimming in the sea.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9459139

9 Ways to Make Your Runs Easier

Runs, as wonderful as they are at times, seem to be more difficult for some people. If you are one of those people, check out these 9 ways to make your runs easier.

1. Shoes

Do you feel pain on your feet mid-run? Or does your feet feel hot and get tired easily? Most likely, the problem is with your shoes. Running becomes harder when your feet either gives up on you or is being subjected to a lot of stress. Worn-out, as well as incorrect shoes, can definitely do that. Let your feet be as comfortable and safe as possible. For example, wear shoes based on your gait. Choose shoes which are made of breathable materials. If you want to try something different, pick up a pair of Diadora running shoes. The Italian brand is known for quality and technology. Lotto, another Italian brand, is also a good option.

2. Rest

Like any hobby or sport, too much can burn you out. If you feel that runs are becoming harder, especially after pushing yourself even more, then it’s time to rest a while. Rest will not just heal your tired muscles but refresh you, so you’ll be energized for your next run.

3. Find Your Training Time

Sometimes, how you perform is based on the time of the day you feel most comfortable. For example, not everyone is a morning person. And some people are too exhausted to run after work. So it’s important to know what schedule fits your needs. You may have to experiment at the start by running at different times, but it will be worth it when you find your comfort zone.

4. Get the Right Fuel

Not eating the right foods and dehydration can easily wear on you when you run. Eat healthy foods and complex carbohydrates before and after your run. Make sure you’re properly hydrated as well. Of course, there’s no better drink than water.

5. Run for a Purpose

Running for the heck of it may work in the short-run, but it may be different in the long run, especially when factors like schedule and repetition sets in. Running then becomes harder. Make runs easier by having a purpose. It could be about losing weight or staying fit. Another good reason is charity. You can find a lot of runs where proceeds go to a good cause. A purpose becomes a motivating factor for you to run.

6. Shorten your stride

Over-striding is a sin when you’re running. It may seem like you are getting more out of your run, but you’re actually tiring yourself out and setting you up for possible shin injuries. Shorten your strides instead.

7. Crank Up the Music

Get an ‘Internal rhythm’ by using songs. Use the beat and time to prep you up during the run. You can sing (out loud or just in your head, if you’re shy) and before you know it, you’ve finished a portion of your run. Does finishing half a mile in 5 minutes seem daunting? Play a five minute Imagine Dragons song (or BeyoncĂ©, depending on what you like) and conquer your run. However, let the music motivate you and not distract you.

8. Run with someone (doesn’t have to be human)

A good conversation and added motivation from a running partner can really help make a run easier. Most likely, you won’t even notice you’ve covered a lot of ground in a short amount of time. Mind you, a running partner doesn’t need to be an actual person. A pet dog-or a seriously obedient and athletic cat-can make an excellent running partner.

9. Pick a Good Route

Nothing like a good running route to give you an easier time. Pick a scenic place so it’s easy on the eyes. A smooth route is also good for your feet.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/9397976