Wednesday, November 26, 2014

ECCO Launches Next-Generation Footwear


ECCO has launched BIOM Hybrid 2, the next-generation of its best-selling style showcasing patented NATURAL MOTION technology and built atop the award-winning E-DTS outsole.

Premiering for Spring/Summer 2015, BIOM Hybrid 2 is slated to be worn in competition by Tour star Fred Couples and other ECCO Golf staff players. It is 15% lighter than the original model thanks to an extra-thin midsole that helps bring players closer to the playing surface. This is complemented by a dual-density TPU outsole. Two-colored to create an inspiring aesthetic, it is harder in areas that need the most stability and softer in key comfort zones.

“We’ve taken what many have declared the world’s most comfortable golf shoe and made it even better,” says Michael Waack, Head of Global Golf at ECCO. “That we can do this is a testament to our skill as shoemakers and the drive that pushes us to pioneer new innovations season after season.”

Like all ECCO golf shoes, BIOM Hybrid 2 is created using the advanced Direct-injection Process. This bonds the upper and outsole unit, creating a one-piece shoe construction without the use of glue or stitching. Benefits include an exceptionally water-tight seal, outstanding flexibility and out-of-the-box comfort.

Additional features of BIOM Hybrid 2 include:

  • Weather Resistance – Naturally soft, breathable and strong yak leather uppers are treated with HYDROMAX™ and an anti-stain formula for superb protection from the elements
  • Anatomical Last Shape – Developed by scanning the feet of 2,500 athletes to provide ideal levels of support
  • Tour-Proven Traction – Constructed from TPU – a highly durable, wear-resistant material – the molded traction bars offer hundreds of traction angles for superb grip
  • Technical Insole System – A new, ultra-premium insole with silicon printing helps prevent unwanted foot movement during the swing

In addition to me and Fred Couples, the ECCO men’s golf collection is worn in competition by Ernie Els, Graeme McDowell, Thomas Bjørn, Thongchai Jaidee, Marcel Siem, Andreas Hartø, Wu Ashun, Will Wilcox, JB Hansen and scores of other Tour stars worldwide.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Monday, November 24, 2014

ARCCOS Now at Apple Stores


ARCCOS, the first club-to-cloud system offering GPS, live stat tracking and Tour analytics, is available now at all Apple Stores nationwide and online at www.apple.com.  Featuring a set of 14 virtually weightless sensors, ARCCOS joins a small group of sports tech products Apple has selected to showcase in its nearly 260 locations.

According to the company, each ARCCOS sensor easily attaches to the end of a club grip. Once paired via Bluetooth to the ARCCOS iPhone app, the system seamlessly integrates with a golfer’s game, allowing them to view stats in real time as they play. It requires no alterations to pre-shot routines, additional devices, tapping, or other hindrances to enjoyment and improvement.

“Our core consumers are very tech-forward, savvy individuals whose purchasing habits closely align with the large and knowledgeable customer base Apple has established,” said Sal Syed, CEO and Co-Founder of Arccos Golf. “The leading-edge technology found in ARCCOS is unlike anything in golf and we’re very excited for players to experience it for the first time.”

ARCCOS is available at select golf retailers nationwide. Along with GPS for more than 16,000 courses in North America, the system captures critical data for your game, providing players with instant access to information on distances hit, club averages, driving accuracy, greens in regulation, sand saves, putts and more. This helps golfers identify patterns and refine tactics before, during and after each round.

Further bolstering the system is the proprietary ARCCOS Tour Analytics platform developed in conjunction with golf’s most renowned statistician, Peter Sanders. Drawing from Sanders’ work with PGA Tour star Zach Johnson and many others, it automatically breaks down a players’ handicap into five key components – driving, approach, chipping, sand game and putting. This allows players to:

  • Gain insight into what every shot means
  • Understand exactly how each part of their game contributes to scoring
  • Explore comparative data in each of the five components from golfers with the same handicap
  • Evaluate patterns across their entire golf history, supporting refinement of on-course tactics

More than just a tool for the individual users, ARCCOS is utilized by top instructors. It helps their students recognize and correct faults, such as club distance gaps, noticeable shot dispersion patterns and other problem areas.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Brynwood Markets Memberships for Future Course

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Members at Brynwood Golf & Country Club in Armonk got good news recently: the club's owners are moving forward with plans to develop the property and rebuild the course.  Brynwood Partners, the club's owners, submitted a revised development plan to the North Castle Town Board on November 5th and the Town Board has accepted the submission for review, a major step in getting final approval for the project.

For current and prospective Brynwood members, that means the course will be in full operation next year and memberships with valuable discount rights for the future are available now.  All members who joined from 2010-2014 are Founding Members and can earn up to $20,000 in initiation credit for phase 2 at Brynwood. The Founding Member category is now closed, but all new members for 2015 will become Legacy Members with following benefits:

 • Legacy Members will receive a $10,000 credit toward any future initiation fees that may be charged for Phase 2 at Brynwood.  In addition, each new member will receive an additional credit of $1,000 for each consecutive year of membership, (up to a maximum total of $15,000) ending when the club begins accepting applications for Phase 2.
 • A Legacy Member who refers a new member to Brynwood for the 2015 season will have a credit posted to the referring member’s account equal to 10% of the new member’s membership dues, earned upon the new member being accepted and their payment of dues.

The innovative club is also offering a a new membership category for 2015.  It's called the Friends & Family Membership and offers these features:

 • To qualify, a minimum of three NEW golf members must join as a group.
 • A 25% dues discount is available for the first three golf memberships.
 • A further 5% dues discount is available for additional members, up to maximum of 40%. 
 • Current members may participate in the Friends & Family Membership, and receive the dues discount, if they recruit a group of three or more new members who join at the same time. 

Sounds like a good time to round up your foursome and plan for the future with one of the most innovative golf clubs in Westchester.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Friday, November 21, 2014

Face-On Putting Solves Anchoring Rule Dilemma

As someone who has tried just about every putting method (legal and otherwise), I can attest that there's a lot to be said for face-on putting, especially as it's done using the GP Putter.

The GP Putter is entirely legal now--and under the USGA prohibition of anchoring to go into effect in 2016--because of the way it is designed and the method recommended for its use.  As I see it, face-on putting has two big advantages:

1.  You are using both eyes to align your stance and the putter with the ball and your intended target line instead of just your dominant eye, which traditional putting relies on.

2.  The motion of the putter stroke is forward, not sideways, so a twist of the wrist is almost impossible, making for a truer club path.

But don't just take my word for it. This video https://vimeo.com/90035278 with Pat Dionne, the inventor of the GP, tells a lot more about it than I can.

You can find all the technical details, more videos, and ordering information at www.face-on-putting.com.

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Get an Insider's Look at KPMG Women's PGA Championship

An army of volunteers as big as the event itself is needed for the inaugural KPMG Women’s PGA Championship to be held June 9-14, 2015, at Westchester Country Club in Rye, N.Y.

"We’re looking for about 1,800 volunteers," says Championship Director Bob Jeffrey. "About half of those are marshals we get through local clubs who are great supporters.  The rest serve on volunteer committees that handle admission sales and will call, contestant transportation, leaderboards and thru boards, and walking scorers."

It sounds like a lot of work--and it is--but the opportunities to experience the tournament are big, too. "Volunteers work three or four shifts depending on their committee assignment, so they have plenty of time to attend and enjoy the tournament the rest of the week," Jeffrey points out.  "Marshals and walking scorers are inside the ropes and are close to the players. Some jobs, like transportation, get opportunities for even more personal contact."

Adult volunteers, ages 22 and older, are required to work four shifts and contribute a minimum of 16 hours total, while junior volunteers, ages 16 to 21, are required to work three shifts and contribute a minimum of 12 hours.  Shifts will last between three and four hours.  For details on positions available, visit www.kpmgwomenspgachampionship.com/volunteer.  You can also contact Jenna Boyce, Volunteer Operations Manager, 914-595-6801 or jboyce@pgahq.com.

"We’re absolutely looking for men as well as women," Jeffrey says, "and we even have junior positions for young people 16 to 21. There’s no fee for them. We want to get as many juniors involved as we can."

Adult volunteers pay $96 to participate. In return, Jeffrey explains, "they get items with a much greater value. The package includes a Polo Ralph Lauren shirt, headwear, a credential they can use to access the course anytime whether they’re working or not, meal and water vouchers for on-course concessions, a program, complementary parking, and a discount for merchandise."

Not sure you know enough about golf to hold a responsible position at a professional tournament?  Not to worry.  "Not every job requires a lot of golf knowledge," Jeffrey says. "Transportation, admissions, and office volunteers don’t need any golf knowledge at all."  He adds that there will be training and orientation offered in late April and, the weekend prior to the tournament, volunteers will visit the course to see what they will actually be going before they start their first shift.

The Championship will offer a purse of $3.5 million, among the highest in women’s golf.  The event is a collaboration of KPMG, the PGA of America, and the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA). Continuing in the tradition of the LPGA Championship, which was first played in 1955, the event will rotate annually among prestigious courses in major metropolitan areas.

Throughout Championship Week, KPMG will spearhead an on-site women’s leadership summit bringing together top women leaders in business, politics, sports, and society to network, learn, and give back. KPMG also will manage the ongoing community initiative to provide today’s top women leaders the opportunity to cultivate the next generation of female leaders and equip them with the leadership skills, networks, and confidence through scholarships, training, and internship and mentoring programs.

The KPMG Women’s PGA Championship will be broadcast on NBC and Golf Channel

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Go Into Winter With a Full Swing (Simulator, that is)

Have you put away your clubs for the winter?  That's a big mistake, especially if you live in New York City or the vicinity.  For one thing, you can hone your game indoors at Chelsea Piers on the Full Swing Golf Simulators--or even put one into your home as hundreds of dedicated golfers and fun seekers have done.  Forget the old, clunky simulators you may have experienced a few years ago. Today's technology is remarkably close to the real thing and, better yet, equipped with game-improvement tools that can make a huge difference in your score.

That's why so many top players like Hunter Mahan and Ian Poulter have put Full Swing Simulators into their homes.  You can, too, for a remarkably reasonable price.  More on that later.

I checked out a Full Swing Simulator with rep Matt Cook recently.  It happened to be located in the offices of a law firm in Manhattan, which demonstrated just how flexible the installation can be. It was also the first time I ever willingly spent time visiting a lawyer.  The demonstrations showed just how advanced the units are, providing instantaneous feedback on every swing with proprietary technology that puts Full Swing far ahead of the competition.

Full Swing Simulators actually use two types of viewing devices to provide accuracy and responsiveness.  One is infra-red tracking provided by two windows in the floor of the installation that track the actual flight of your ball.  Other simulator (and launch monitor) technologies merely project what's happening in flight using algorithms based on your swing speed, launch angle, and other factors.  The infra-red system also means you don't need to use specially-marked balls to get accurate readings.

The other viewing device is Ion2 Vision technology, an all-new camera-based system that focuses on club head and ball flight behavior.  It's a thin-profile unit that mounts almost flush with the simulator ceiling and uses high-speed cameras to measure your results.  Most competing camera solutions require that you hit from the same 4-6 inch spot on the mat but the Ion2's field of view is an 18-inch diameter, so Ion2 finds your ball and automatically adjusts the target line within the software.  You'll get instant feedback on back spin, side spin, spin axis, club head speed, face angle, and club path.  All Full Swing Simulators come with E6 Software, that, coupled with the vision technology, gives you the most realistic motion graphics available.

The Swing Catalyst is an option you'll love. It provides video of every swing you make along with stats that measure things like the rhythm of your swing (the ratio of time taken for your back-swing to your through-swing).  Want to know why your approach shot on Pebble Beach's eighth hole fell into the ocean instead of landing on the green? You can check out the actual swing you made to find out.

The Full Swing Simulator provides up to 86 courses to play and practice as well as scoring for numerous games and wagers for up to eight players.  Want this in-home golf course for yourself?  They start at just $45,000 for a system with a custom design and training person to make it work for you.

One of the many cool features of the Full Swing Simulator is the "boost" setting, which allows your kids to hit the ball as far as you do--or vice versa!  Sounds like a great way to get the whole family involved in golf, doesn't it?  And for those times when pasture pool isn't on the agenda, the system provides a powerful gaming computer with high definition projection that will "wow" even the hardiest gamer.  Great family Christmas present? You bet!

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf

Monday, November 17, 2014

Golf's Best Behavior Manual

Shouts of "Baba Booey" notwithstanding, golf has always been a game remarkable for its civility. The USGA rulebook doesn't cover politeness, however, except in rather general terms. If you've ever not been sure what to do in certain circumstances, you need a new booklet called "Golf Etiquette Quick Reference. A Golfer's Guide to Correct Conduct." by Yves C. Ton-That, a rules official and best selling golf author.

This new pocket-sized guide supplements "Golf Rules Quick Reference", Ton-That's first guide that sold more than one million copies and is the best selling golf book in the U.S. It has been translated into more than twenty languages and according to Golf Digest is "the best effort yet to decipher the Rules of Golf." The new booklet covers everything golfers of all skill levels need to know, so that you can play any course in the world with confidence. It includes sections on topics like preparing for the round at home and enjoying a drink at the 19th hole as well as safety, courtesy, and fixing divots. The guide is also extensively illustrated in color and is the perfect complement to the Golf Rules Quick Reference.

"Etiquette on and around the golf course is crucial, and is just as important as the rules of play to ensure that you play the game in the proper spirit," says Ton-That, who also penned "Trouble Shots and Quick Fix Guide" in his career as an author. "When you're in the company of seasoned golfers, or invited to play a private club, saying or doing even one thing incorrectly can make the difference of not being invited back. And with a little preparation and knowledge, you can avoid most any potentially embarrassing situation."

The 48-page, spiral-bound and plastic-coated book is now available in golf shops and at www.golfrulesmadeeasy.com, for $12.95 (ISBN 978-3-909596-77-5, Artigo Publishing International, 1st edition 2014).

Among many other books, Dave Donelson is the author of Weird Golf: 18 tales of fantastic, horrific, scientifically impossible, and morally reprehensible golf