The holidays in Sun Valley are unique. From the snow-covered peaks (and ski runs!) that surround the Wood River Valley, to the old-fashioned charm of the Sun Valley Village and the decidedly European feel of the Resort, Christmas in Sun Valley is straight out of a beloved picture book. I have spent more than 30 Christmases in Sun Valley and while I certainly appreciate all that the Resort does to keep current (our amazing snowmaking and grooming, the gorgeous Lodge remodel, The Spa, and new
Golf can be a lot of fun when you're playing well. When you're not, it can be a bit frustrating. And if you're playing poorly but your partner is playing well—and has a good sense of humor—well then forget about it. Fore! isn't the only thing you'll find yourself hollering.
To help assure you're hollering out things more along the lines of Justin Spieth on the 18th at Augusta, and less like Happy Gilmore after the Bob Barker incident, here are three reasons why even the most seasoned golfers could use a lesson every once and a while.
1: It Really Does Help
Even the best golfers in the world have coaches, so everyone from pros to duffers can always "use a fresh set of eyes" as Jeff Petersen, the director of golf at Sun Valley, says.
Petersen and his four-man team of fellow PGA pros at Sun Valley have decades of experience in teaching golf. They can see things that may be causing issues with your swing that you can't.
"You can't really see what's going on with your own swing. I tell people it's like hearing your voice on a recording or the radio, it sounds a lot different than you think," Jeff said. "Your swing may not look exactly how you think it does, so a fresh set of eyes can help."
2: It Sets You Up For Success
Much like the trees I occasionally line my drives into, the key to any healthy golf game is its foundation, its base.
"I often say it's like the trunk of a tree. If you don't have a solid base you can't grow leaves and bear fruit," Jeff said, about the root of the golf swing: grip, stance, alignment, attitude.
"I'm a firm believer that most ball contact errors take place before the club even reaches waist height," Jeff said. "A lot of golf is about set up and foundation. It's not a reaction sport. The ball isn't moving, so when you hit a shot poorly it's not the ball's fault. That's why we focus a lot on the basic set up and foundation and it leads to success."
3: It Keeps You Positive
The old saying is that golf isn't played on the course, but in the six-inches between your ears.
Having a good attitude and selective memory are two common traits of successful golfers. Taking a lesson will help make you feel more confident and will give you some encouraging things to focus on, like staying positive.
"When you're hitting them well the ball looks big, the hole looks big. But when you're not, or if you hit a couple bad shots or have a tough hole, that's when your attitude is most important," Jeff said. "You have to be able to shake it off, take a deep breath and get back into it. It helps if you can focus on the positive. Think of a good shot you hit. Forget the bad and remember the good. Have a short and selective memory."
All three of Sun Valley's courses (Trail Creek, White Clouds and Elkhorn) are open and, thanks to all the spring rain, are in very good shape and getting better and more beautiful everyday. Lessons are available at the Club Pro Shop. The cost is $100 for an hour or $60 for a half-hour. Walk-ins can occasionally be accepted, but it's best to book a lesson in advance.
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