ABS 10th Year Anniversary!

ABS 10th Year Anniversary!

Postby lagpressure » Sat Aug 31, 2019 7:03 am

First of all, I want to thank all the golfers who have supported this site, contributed, studied, browsed around and just been here for now over a decade. I really never would have imagined we would be here 10 years later.

There is so much information, introspection, investigation and for the most part, we have been free of trolls and negativity that have been so disruptive on so many internet forums etc. We all know how that goes.

This site has been divided into a public side and a private student side. I think that concept has proven viable.

Many have come, many have casually passed through, many have gone. Some take what they need, some check in here and there, others have taken up residence.

The game has changed some in 10 years. I think it changed a lot more from the end of the persimmon era up until the beginnings of this site.
The future of golf isn't up to me... as much as I would like it to be! Nevertheless, I'd like to think this is one of the finest classic golf sites in the world, if not the best.

So, please feel free to post here, leave your thoughts, experiences and vision for where this all might go into this next decade.
I'll spent some time reflecting upon what I have learned in the last 10 years about the game, the swing, teaching etc.. and where I might want to see things go as well.

There are so many people to thank, but the obvious comes to mind being Bradley Hughes and our ABS Clubsmith Mike Rees.
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Re: ABS 10th Year Anniversary!

Postby lagpressure » Sat Aug 31, 2019 7:18 am

I've certainly felt like a broken record supporting the classic game. I don't think my opinion has wavered an inch. One of the reasons I haven't posted as much recently is for this reason. I don't know how many times I can keep saying the same thing over again or in a slightly different or "veiled" way. My feeling is that we have three games now.

The Classic Game (persimmon woods, steel shafts, balata wound golf balls... post hickory era)

Super Golf (Giant headed drivers, plastic golf balls, 7400 yard courses)

Hickory Golf (Hickory shafted golf clubs, gutta percha golf balls and prior)

To me it is pretty clear. It's not being acknowledged properly... yet. I hope to see that changed. A proper distinction needs to be made.
The hickory era still has tournaments.. even if mostly nostalgia based... and no one is alive from that competitive era I don't think.

Of course this is mainly from the pro perspective... tournament golf which leads the way and inspires the novice or even weekend golfers.
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Re: ABS 10th Year Anniversary!

Postby lagpressure » Sat Aug 31, 2019 7:34 pm

The golf swing has changed very much over a few generations. The great swing of the hickory era might best be defined by Bobby Jones. The classic game, Ben Hogan. Super Golf... Tiger Woods. Very different actions with different intentions and much of that based upon both the demands of the courses and the equipment designed to navigate those layouts.

I played on tour near the end of the classic era. I would define the classic era from roughly 1935 through 1997. Just over 60 years. I would not have seen Super Golf coming as a junior player in the 1970's nor would I have seen it coming as a college player in the 1980's. But as a tour player in the early 1990's.. I saw it coming when playing at the US PGA Tour School in Indiana. I was paired with future British Open Champion Todd Hamilton who had just come back from playing the Japanese Tour with a giant headed all graphite driver. It was extra long and he was driving the ball 20 yards farther. We had played together many times in the past and we drove the ball about the same distance. Suddenly he was hitting a 7 iron into a green when I was hitting a 5 iron. He was boasting about it, and how it helped him win in Japan. I remember thinking the USGA better do something about this or golf courses were no longer going to play properly for the touring pros. The USGA ignored this, and more technology came and came and came and by the end of the 1990's golf was essentially a different game. The combo of the new solid plastic golf balls along with the giant extra long drivers was sending the ball 15% farther... but the courses were only going to extend by 5% over the next decade and maybe ending up 10% longer. This still left course actually playing 5% to 10% shorter. This was a huge miscalculation by the USGA if the goal was to preserve the classic game. They failed miserably and there is still discussion about "what to do". Other things like banning steel spikes at golf courses while keeping them official "legal" at the USGA is nothing but a head spinner. Really? Those steel spikes allowed for better golf swings in any era. Rules made by non players, people that didn't understand the game and the golf swing. The final nail in the coffin was the low spinning plastic golf ball. If you take away a good player's ability to work and shape the golf ball, you're killing that player's finesse and abilities. It was and still is an unforgivable sin against the classic game. The balata would ball was a much more dynamic and advanced golf ball. A liquid core encased by a marble sized rubber ball, then wound with 3 miles of rubber banding, then covered by a soft balata rubber cover that felt heavenly when you struck it properly and would just dance around and give you all kinds of advanced options for getting the ball into tucked pins on a green with a lower trajectory entry.

The fact is... the classic game is over and has been over for at least 20 years. This needs to be understood and acknowledged. I'm tired of hearing about it, and tired of any kind of "comparisons" between the different eras of players. It's not fair, it's not proper, it's not respectful.

That all being said, any contributions I have made or will make to the game will be based upon the game I played, respected, loved and enjoyed pursuing. I have zero interest in the modern game of Super Golf... I have made that known and don't see changing my view of it any time soon.

I still feel the classic game should have a future on or at some level. If there are official hickory events, there should be official classic era events. There are still many great classic tracks around and it would be wonderful to see them properly played and relevant again.... in competitions.

I feel there was just too much invested for over 60 years to just throw it all under the bus and never look back.
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Re: ABS 10th Year Anniversary!

Postby k2baloo » Sun Sep 01, 2019 6:37 pm

Very cool, I had no idea you were coming up on this milestone!

A big thank you to Lag, Mike, Bradley, and all the users. I've enjoyed being a forum contributor here and have learned a lot. I doubt I would have ever ventured into vintage equipment without this site. I also highly doubt I would have experimented as much as I have with flatter lies and heavier clubs without reading some of the information here. These things have improved my game and made it more enjoyable. Most of the courses I play are <7000 yards, and the old gear suits them much better.

In terms of future vision, I see more of the same. I do still believe there is more opportunity to showcase the vintage game through YouTube and other medias. This would be a good way to show people playing with old equipment is a viable, enjoyable, alternative to playing modern golf. It could also lead to some serious vintage competitions down the road if smaller videos/demonstrations generate interest.
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Re: ABS 10th Year Anniversary!

Postby LesMurray » Tue Sep 03, 2019 9:13 am

Congrats Lag for having this site available for so long. Personally, I enjoy all the content and reading some of the early posts by students. Reading the posts from John and Bradley are really eye opening and contain so much quality information.

Don't know if you are able but it would be great to reach out to some of the early students to see how they are getting along. I can attest that the ABS program requires a lot of work and dedication. I find so much of this is comes under the heading of I don't know what I don't know. I've received lots of help and encouragement from many of the posters on this site and it has helped a lot.
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Re: ABS 10th Year Anniversary!

Postby jrich99 » Tue Sep 03, 2019 6:51 pm

Grateful for all you’ve put into this site, lag. I think I’m coming up on 8 years in the spring. As someone born at the tail end of the persimmon era who grew up in the Tiger era, ABS opened my eyes to dimensions of the game that have largely faded from view in modern golf broadcasting, commentary, and teaching.

My days of pursuing competitive golf are over, but the ABS approach has enabled me to put very little effort into practicing lately and still be a threat to shoot in the low 70s on a good day during the few times a year that I play. I started law school this fall in the northeast, so I’m not going to have the time or the weather to allow much golf, but I know that the foundation laid through module work will hold up well during prolonged time away from the game, and will serve me well once I can start playing regularly again.
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Re: ABS 10th Year Anniversary!

Postby Wknhacker » Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:07 pm

Congrats to John, Bradley, and the rest of the guys/gals here at ABS on the 10 year anniversary.

This is probably my favourite golf site and message board. I can't think of the number of times I've come here to find and reference threads about players, specific parts of the swing, theories and concepts of the swing, and of course equipment. Big thanks to John for keeping it alive despite that the number of active posters (at least on the public side) is down from where it was in 2009.

Every time someone asks me about my persimmons, either at the range or on the course, I refer them to this site and encourage them to read and consume all the wisdom left here by John and others.

Here's to 10 more great years of ABS.
"I have a tip that can take five strokes off anyone's golf game: it's called an eraser." - Arnold Palmer
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