Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Dave Orr's 'Green Reading 201' Video Review
I recently purchased David Orr's 'Green Reading 201' video for $29.95. As most readers know by now, I believe Mr. Orr is the #1 Teacher in the world mainly because not only does he have great teaching ability, but he probably has the most wide range of knowledge of any current instructor with his ability to teach Homer Kelley's 'The Golfing Machine', MORAD, and the Stack & Tilt swing systems, methodologies and philosophies. He also has done extensive research on putting, which in my mind seperates him from the other swing gurus. As the Director of Instruction at Campbell University's Professional Golf Management program, he's quite a valuable asset to the school. Having once majored in PGM at another school, I can assuredly tell you that other schools with a PGM program have nowhere near the curriculum that Campbell University has with David when it comes to player development and courses guided to help a student improve their instructional skills.
This video is a spin off of Green Reading 101 and is actually part of a set of Player Development courses that are taken by Campbell PGM students. The video is basically showing Orr and AimPoint Golf founder Mark Sweeney giving instruction to a bunch of Campbell PGM students.
The only issue I had with the video was unzipping the file. I do not have WinZip and the downloading of the video was easy enough, but I struggled to unzip the file with the recommended 7-Zip program. If there's one big suggestion I would make to David, it would be to set up a program that Brian Manzella has with his online videos where you are given the link and then you click the link and you're good to go. However, that could lead to some people copying that to other golfers, but it's not like one could not just burn Orr's video to DVD and pass it on.
You've probably seen AimPoint technology at work on tournaments done by The Golf Channel where they show the actual line of the putt.
Sweeney first thought up of AimPoint Golf after watching a British Open where golfers kept on missing the same putt in the same direction. Using computer technology and research, Sweeney was able to create a system that would help read GREENS and help tell the golfer where to aim within 1 inch of accuracy.
I made sure to capitalize reading GREENS as Sweeney notes that most golfers think reading greens is done by standing behind the ball and doing the reading from there. Sweeney states that this is not actually reading the GREEN, but instead reading the line of the putt and is really an ineffective way of doing so. The golfer instead needs to understand the slope(s) of the green so they can actually read the green and then read the actual line of their putt with accuracy. Sweeney has also developed an 'AimChart' that based on projected stimpmeter and where the ball is in relation to the 'fall line', it can chart how much the putt should break.
David Orr did some demonstration as well as one of the Campbell PGM students and provide the speed was reasonably good (the AimChart is designed for a putt that travels about 12" past the cup), it has uncanny accuracy.
The video was mostly ran by Sweeney and Orr was always good at ask meaningful questions. After going thru the 'AimChart' Sweeney explained the Zero Line (which I erroneously thought was the same thing as the Fall Line). This is helpful on longer putts and had uncanny accuracy as well. Sweeney also went over many other topics, including:
1. Why there is such a thing as an 'impossible putt.'
2. The types of slope a cup can be placed on.
3. How to read putts that are near, but not on the Zero Line.
4. Why a 10 foot putt with break doesn't actually travel 10 feet.
5. How to find the fall line properly.
6. Why a golfer should never aim at the 'apex' of a breaking putt.
Again, Sweeney and Orr do a fantastic job of explaining these concepts, facts, rules of thumb...but since it's so foreign from what most of us have ever learned this is a video that will probably need to be watched over and over again and something that needs to be practice on the putting green with before one becomes adept at it. Also, do not go and buy this video without watching Orr's Green Reading 101 video first and understanding the basic concepts.
I have yet to implement what I've learned from this video, but so far Orr's putting videos have been nothing but helpful and have improved my putting. So I am confident that once I start to grasp the concepts of this video, my putting will only get better. If there's one thing about Orr's putting videos that I enjoy is that I no longer make excuses for my putting other than it being 'user error.' Today I played on newly installed Championship Bermuda greens that were sanded and extremely slow and had 32 putts on them with no 3-putts. In the past I probably would have putted very poorly and blamed it on the greens. Now, I am armed with more knowledge and combat this into a solid day of rolling the rock. So like the other videos, I highly recommend this video, especially if you're a serious golfer.
The video can be found at www.orrgolf.com. For more on Aimpoint and Mark Sweeney, visit their Web site at www.aimpointgolf.com.