Technology aided Golf Learning – Beginning of iGolfApps

Posted by on Jan 25, 2014 in Uncategorized | No Comments

iGolfApps was born out of a love of technology and golf. As soon as the first iPhone came out I saw the potential of it for helping with my golf game, and set about learning the language required to program apps for iOS. My golf pro at the time used a program on his PC that enabled lines to be drawn over a video so he could show me the moves he wanted me to make, and I knew then that this was something that needed to be on the iPhone, and the concept for SwingPlane was born.

Nowadays you won’t find many golf professionals that use external cameras and a PC…they are all using an iPad or iPhone with a swing training app. The comments we get from them prove that the idea I had at the start was right.

“Having been a golf coach for the past 23 years and spent thousands on laptops and swing software this is the best money I have ever spent! I am a golf pro at Moortown GC and use this app for coaching. I recommend this to all my pupils and fellow professionals. Martin Heggie head pro at Moortown recommended this to me”
-Craig Helliwell Moortown GC

Swing Plane is the best golf app available. Simple to use and a $2.99 app can replace several thousands of dollars in video equipment. The easy to use telestrator and frame by frame feature can tell you everything you need to know about your swing. As an instructor, the side by side feature allows me to show students the improvements they have made from previous swings.”
-Monte Scheinblum…World Long dive Champion and Instructor at Oak Creek Golf Club, Irvine, CA

I started golf pretty late at the age of 22, but with a Father who had been off scratch and was on a 3 when I started, I had a better chance than most of becoming reasonable at this game. The golf bug bit me pretty bad, I was an accomplished rugby player but in the off season from rugby I spent every day at the golf course either practicing or playing. Dad used to hit 100 balls every day, and he instilled into me the need to practice, something I still love doing to this day.

It took a few years to learn the nuances of the game and become proficient at it, but by my late 20’s I was down to single figures. I used to say that I’d never had a lesson, but with dad with me at the driving range most weeks that is probably not strictly correct, I just did not have to pay for it!

My ambition for the formative years of my golf was to beat my dad, but common with competitions of this sort there was no quarter neither given nor received. And no shots either, so despite being 10 or so shots north of dad’s handicap we always played off the stick. Dad always seemed to have a knack of digging deep when it was needed; plenty of times he finished the last 2 holes 1 or 2 under to my 1 or 2 over to beat me by a shot. It took me quite a few years to beat him, finally shooting a 2 over 74 against his 76 to do it, he did not even know until I slid my scorecard under his nose after the round….I suspect if he realised how I was playing that day the result would have been different.

That experience with dad in my early days playing golf provided the impetus for another of our apps, NLP Golf. Andrew Fogg has been dealing with the mental side of golf for the past decade or so. Andrew has worked and trained with with the master and co-founder of NLP – Richard Bandler. He was assisted by Paul McKenna, the world-famous hypnotist, John La Valle, the president of the Society of NLP, and Michael Neill, the internationally renowned success coach and the best-selling author of “You Can Have What You Want”, “Feel Happy Now!” and the “Effortless Success” audio program.

Ever since starting my NLP program my golf has improved. I used to get frustrated and angry when things did not go my way, and was anxious when pressure mounted if I was having a good round, or in an important competition. I still remember being 2 under for the front nine when the young lad marking my card said “you can be 11 over for the back 9 and still play to your handicap”. Needless to say the score I shot on the back 9 was 11 over…oh how I wish I know about NLP then.
I’m not saying I never hit bad shots anymore, or that I don’t get nervous in certain situations. What I do have though is an arsenal for dealing with these, I no longer get angry about golf shots, and if I am nervous I have a process to go through that will overcome it. I also have a very effective method from the hypnosis of focusing my concentration….it takes some work but there have been a number of difficult and important putts that have fallen into the hole that I am sure would not have without this. Maybe it is the placebo effect, but if that is the result I will take it!

My first introduction to Gary Smith was through the Golf Monthly magazine. A columnist in the magazine wrote an article about learning the low spinning wedge shot after a session with Gary, and I decided that was something I needed to know. I contacted Gary about going on one of his coaching breaks…the timing never worked out for this but I was on his mailing list.

A bit later on that year Gary sent out a mailshot with details of his short game DVD, I looked at the videos and knew that this was something that needed to be in an app, the Gary Smith Short Game app was born. Working with Gary over the past couple of years has been the single biggest influence in my golfing progress. Gary has worked with the top players in the UK for the past 14 years as the chief short game coach working with England’s top amateur stars as an EGU Technical Coach, working with European Tour players including Justin Rose, Chris Wood, Ross Fisher, Danny Willett, Gary Boyd, Ollie Fisher, Richard Finch, David Horsey, Seve Benson, Nick Dougherty, Paul Waring and Gary Wolstenholme.

He is a Golf Monthly UK Top 25 Coach and has been awarded Advanced Fellow of the PGA for his knowledge and experience within golf. Gary has developed a short game method that is used by the top amateurs and tour pros, but that your club coach won’t be teaching you. Gary is happy to demonstrate this in front of other PGA pros in seminars on the short game, and is the EGU’s most popular presenter. Just ask your pro to demonstrate his short game and see what response you get!
My progress under Gary has been unbelievable. What was previously a real weakness is now the strongest part of my game, and if I have a round where I don’t chip or pitch in once or twice I am disappointed (unless I have hit 18 green in regulation of course, but I am still waiting for that one!). I regularly have playing partners watching my short game and wondering what I am doing…the stance may look different from what they have been taught but there is a reason for it. It only takes a chip in or hitting the flag a couple of time before they are asking how I do it. The simple fact is that Gary’s method works, it makes bad shots ok and good shots great. Many is the time I have not struck the chip/pitch correctly but ended up with the gimmie. The margin for error is what makes it work.

My biggest current challenge is getting the time to play, something that I have in common with many of you no doubt! Thankfully there are plenty of things you can do to help your golf without the need to be on the course or at the range. There are sections in our Long Game app that will help you with this all without leaving your home. Combine this with fixes for common faults (slice, hook, shanking, topping and hitting it fat), as well as fundamentals like grip, posture, setup and aim (all of which can be worked in at home) this app combines all of Gary’s knowledge of the full swing accumulated over his many years of working with top golfers.

I hope that you will enjoy what we have to offer, we are always willing to hear from you and help where we can, just drop us a line from the contact page.

Andrew.

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