Well what a superb few days at the largest PGA Golf Trade Show in the world, come to think of it one of the best venues too when you consider the cold, wet and snowy January’s in the UK…. the sunshine state!
The show brings everyone involved within the industry a chance to catch up (network the proper terminology!) try the latest most sought after unreleased equipment and gadgets during demo day and the three days on the show floor. I shall be writing about this later!
The demo day was once again filled with those wanting to show off their hitting skills, often turning into a long drive contest! With well over 1,000,000 balls hit the staff did an amazing job even grading the range balls to ensure only the best were used. My goal is to be fully fit next year to pluck up the courage to hit my driver on show!
My primary reason was to meet up and network with the best in the business during the week and listen to views on a number of topics. There were forums with Jim Hardy, David Leadbetter, Hank Haney, Jim McLean, and Michael Breed (2014 PGA coach of the year)
Stan Utley the short game guru whom I have spoken and worked with in Phoenix and Dr Jim Suttie a lovely chap and top in his field presented short game mechanics and biomechanics and coaching body shapes respectively. These two class coaches did not disappoint with an added pleasure of meeting a former colleague who plays in the States now.
However, Bubba Watson was the star of the show for sure, delivering a clinic based around shot shaping which he demonstrated with consummate ease. Looking at the image for those clients I coach who use the interlocking grip can now say ” I use the same hold as Bubba!” One fact I did not expect to hear was Bubba uses 10 extra wraps set 2 degrees open plus extra layers situated in line with his grip, this is to reduce wrist action and excessive club face closure during the swing. I also spent time with Golf Pride who are the number 1 grips used on Tour so watch out for some specials here! Bubba was refreshing in his approach with his continued emphasis upon the playing element which is really key. I personally try to reiterate that technical work should only be completed on the practice ground with self discovery learning occurring on the course. Bubba opened the 2015 PGA Golf show mingling with the show attendees on his sponsors stands which certainly bought a buzz to the show floor which can only help the industry. I even managed to grab a photo opportunity with the Masters Champion, what a delightful gentleman.
However this year I firmly believe will see a resurgence within participation of the sport as the mood amongst the exhibitors and Professionals was very positive which if we all build upon will keep this amazing sport we play healthy.
I hope you have enjoyed this short summary, keep an eye open for my next blog which will be based around some of the stars of the show.