Always Golf
  Struan McDowall
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About Me

 
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18 Questions you may want to ask me before taking a lesson.

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How long have you been playing golf?
I have been playing for 34yrs.
Who taught you to play?

I first learnt the basics by going to Saturday morning Junior Clinics at my local Golf Club. From here I copied the best player at the club John Collins a fabulous player that I spent hours watching and learning.

It was Jack Coogan PGA professional, one of the foremost Australian amateurs of his generation. For a long time rated the best golfer in Queensland.
Winner of six Queensland amateur championships, five Brisbane amateur close championships, was twice runner-up in the Australian amateur championship, and three time’s Australian representative–who taught me how to play golf.

His brother Dick Coogan (Amateur) Renowned Long Hitter, Australian & Queensland Representative also had a big influence.

I couldn’t have had two better mentors. Jack, consistent, accurate, strong, a short game master and elder brother Dick a phenomenal ball striker. My thanks to them.

What amateur /professional tournaments have you competed in?
From the start I played in as many junior tournaments as I could, being successful in a number of events;
Winner Oxley Junior Club Championship.
R/UP Oxley Club championship to John Collins.
Winner QLD. North Coast Junior Championship
Undefeated playing #1 in junior pennant season.
Captain of Winning Team, Myall Holden Junior Teams Open Championship
Winning Best Gross Trophy Myall Holden Junior Open.
Qld. State Schoolboy Representative.
Playing Professionally
4th in the Qld Trainee Championship, finishing ahead of now most notable tour players Ian baker-Finch, Peter McWinney.
3 Victories on the PGA QLD Sunshine Pro/Am Circuit.1980/87
-----Qualified for the Victorian 1987 PGA Match-play Championship
-----Lost to Rob McNaughton on the 19th in the Semi-Finals.
Winning Professional in the prestigious ‘Centenary Cup’1990 carding a 68 around Royal Melbourne, West course.
Played golf in Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Thailand, and Malaysia.
What made you decide to become a teaching pro?

Jack Coogan was the person who really got me thinking about the golf swing. To this day, I still feel that most of the concepts I teach have evolved from things that Jack Coogan taught me.
I enjoy listening to people who come to me for help. I want to understand how they feel about their golf. From this point I want to try to simplify things a little bit, give them a basic concept, a few concrete principles, and some guidelines for building their own game.

What teaching pros are or have been your most influential mentors?
Jack Coogan, Charlie Earp, Ken Wilson, Doug Katterns, David Leadbetter, Brian Twite, Denis Pugh ,Daryl Welch, Alex Mercer, Phil Ritson, John Jacobs ,Ted Ball, Jimmy Ballard, Dr. Ralph Mann.
What types of golfers do you prefer to teach?
My golf coaching and no-nonsense philosophy will benefit golfers of a wide range of skill and attitude. Beginner, middle or high handicappers, scratch player all are very rewarding to teach.
What full-swing method do you teach?

To offer you total care with your golf development,
I teach 3 full swing methods.
Rather than teach a set method to every student, I realized that each player had a different physique and possessed different strong points, so I may teach each pupil quite differently. Once the fundamentals are firmly in place, I will help you understand the workings of your swing.

Method 1;
in developing a swing I would show a pupil how a real swing feels with the fundamentals of a traditional small muscle method. The small muscle method, once mastered, is the easiest, most effective, and longest lasting.
As this emphasizes the role of the hands and arms it is also the most effective swing for curing a slice because slicers overuse body action and under use hands and arms.

Method 2;
Here I employ the fundamentals of a modern big muscle method.
The fundamental model here emphasizes the role of the body in controlling the swing and therefore is the most effective method for curing a hook because hookers overuse hands and arms and under use body action.
History nb: this method was developed and refined by golf instructors who worked mostly with tour professionals.

Struan Mcdowall teaching is a well co conceived concept that includes a repertoire of preferences aligned in a rational method by a coach who knows when to apply a specific method to a specific individual.
I am very assured in teaching what is necessary to cause the correct effect in my pupils. They swing in harmony, in an orthodox manner and their results demonstrate the sound fundamentals that I ask them to follow.

Method 3
This is a mixed muscle method and this has the lot. The mixed muscle or post modern method is the result of advances in computer and kinetic research. Biomechanics is a fancy term for the study of human movement. Kinetics is the action that turns proper body position and movement into a “Dynamic Swing” The fundamentals are based on films of more than 100 top tour pros. The result is a perfect example in balance of strength, flexibility and coordination. The emphasis is with coordination of body action and hand and arm action so they are in absolute harmony.
I recommend this for all ability levels.

What putting method do you teach?
What I teach is a consistent, repeatable stroke where all moving parts compliment one another perfectly.
Putting is comprised of two distinct facets. The first is the decision making and the second is the stroke itself.
Once the target line is chosen, it remains to get the ball exactly down that line at the right speed.
Two things need to happen to make a putt follow the target line.
1/ the putter face properly orientated with the target line at the point of impact.
2/the putter path matching the target line at the point of impact.
My putting methods are an excellent starting point for better putting and they are simple. It is a method that will make these two conditions consistent and accurate.
What short-game method do you teach?

In general I teach a unified-swing for the short game. This means that the shots should be played with miniature versions of a full swing or putting stroke. So I will first show you how to play a Chip, a short high pitch, a full pitch shot in the manner that you are playing your full shots.
These shots are kept to a simple 2 step procedure. These shots are the basis of your short game and become your “Bread n Butter” shots.

The expert golfer plays short shots a bit differently.
He may benefit further from a multiple-swing approach. He does this because his swing is perfect and he can make adjustments to get the best results from each club.
One of the best ways to cut strokes from your score – is mastering a wide variety of shots with your fairway wedges and sand iron.

If this is for you I will teach you to play low shots with spin, high shots, soft shots, crisp shots, shots from the rough, and shots from close lies, uphill shots, and downhill shots.

What do you charge for lessons?

½ hour =$50, 1 hour=$95, Clinics $10 to $20, Student ½ hour $40, Little Tackers under 7y/old $7.50 Half Day short game school $75per person, Full day School $295 per person*

Do you plan to stay in this area for that foreseeable future?
‘The Range’ Sandringham is a great coaching and learning centre.
It offers golfers top facilities to practice your total game.
Each month we have Equipment Demo nights, Tuesday & Wednesday mornings Women’s Clinics ,Tuesday afternoon Junior Academy programmes, Saturday morning Under 7year old clinics, Saturday morning Advanced Junior Lessons, Saturday morning & Wednesday evening Open swing check clinics, Saturday afternoon Shot of the Day Clinics.
My private lessons and weekly golf programmes keep me teaching so yes I intend to be there for some time. Come on down, I’d love to help you with your game.
What is your teaching philosophy?

Understanding, Picture, Feel= Success.
Recognizing individual differences in students makes teaching an art. For this reason I have always resisted the temptation of becoming a ‘one method ‘teacher, preferring instead to always see the truth and the individual for what they are, maintain an open mind and apply indisputable ‘balance’ in swing mechanics and other aspects of the game with each student.
I am always totally thrilled when I can improve the game of the beginner, middle or high handicapper. Refreshing the basic skills for the scratch player is very rewarding. My golf coaching and no-nonsense philosophy will benefit golfers of a wide range of skill and attitude.

From the outset of my teaching I looked beyond the refinement of my own game and studied the methods of the great players and the ideas and success patterns of their coaches.

The answer to coaching is there is no such thing as a ‘The & Only’ golf swing. In fact there are 3 major types of golf swings with combinations and hybrids of each. Even single plane swings and two plane swings.
So always bear in mind that one swing does not fit all and it is best to build your swing around your own needs and requirements.
The technical information that I draw upon is the culmination of a study of the Legends of the game. Hogan, Nicklaus, Micky Wright, Greg Norman, Bobby Jones, Locke,Cotton,Snead, Nick Faldo , Colin Montgomery, Ernie Els, Tiger Woods. Each has their own swing but fit into one of the three major swing groups.
Proven principals; my study of golf instruction has come a long way over the last 15 to 20 years. High speed photography and ever-more sophisticated video analysis has enabled the leading Pro and coaches to identify the specific moves that define these sound repeating golf swings. This information has led to a general standardization in teaching methods worldwide, and an increasing number of to days young superstars are swinging the club with actions you could call big muscle swings, small muscle swings and mixed muscle ‘Dynamic’ swings. As a result of this greater understanding, I have at my fingertips a number of proven principles.

My reputation as a comprehensive AAA accredited Golf Coach is seen with my clients saying, that I have a rare combination of technical knowledge with the ability to convey that information clearly and concisely, in a manner that can be understood, digested and remembered by the student. Special attentiveness is given to average and high-handicap golfers.
My teaching approach will not confuse players who have had orthodox golfing education. In safe hands; once the fundamentals are firmly in place, I will help you understand the workings of your swing. I will highlight certain key checkpoints, such as the top of the backswing to enable you to monitor your own progress.
After a golf lesson; practice, play and enjoy.

Are you a technical teacher or a feel teacher?

My aims are to simplify the golf swing, and therefore start by implementing its elements to the pupil in terms of physical “feel” rather than through semantically complexities and awkwardness.
I have a combination of technical knowledge with the ability to convey that information clearly and concisely, in a manner that can be understood, digested and remembered by the student.
My teaching approach will not confuse players who have had orthodox golfing education.
I enjoy listening to a person who comes to me for help. I want to understand how they feel about their golf. With this knowledge I want to try to simplify things a little bit, give them a basic concept, a few concrete principles, and some guidelines for building their own game.

I use exercises to promote the feel of a real golf swing. Those done without the club, those done with a club but without the ball and those done hitting a ball .If needed, I will take you through step by step.
I use Drills to dramatically improve your fundamentals and swing.
The PMA learning System is employed with the feel and technique of the ‘Dynamic’ swing and makes it one of the easiest to learn.

Can you take a golfer with my present playing ability to the next level?
Yes, you are in safe hands; once the fundamentals are firmly in place, I will help you understand the workings of your swing.
I feel that I am uniquely positioned to help you adopt and build ‘success patterns’ to bring your golf game to a new high standard.
My golf coaching and no-nonsense philosophy will benefit golfers of a wide range of skill and attitude.
From here I can also guide you in proven mind and management techniques. The mind set that you bring to the game determines not only the enjoyment you will derive from it but also the level of proficiency you will achieve.
I am always totally thrilled when I can improve the game of the beginner, middle or high handicapper. Refreshing the basic skills for the scratch player is very rewarding.
Struan Mcdowall teaching is a well co conceived concept that includes a repertoire of preferences aligned in a rational method by a coach who knows when to apply a specific method to a specific individual.
Practice, play and enjoy.

Can you take a golfer with my present playing ability to the next level?
Yes, you are in safe hands; once the fundamentals are firmly in place, I will help you understand the workings of your swing.
I feel that I am uniquely positioned to help you adopt and build ‘success patterns’ to bring your golf game to a new high standard.
My golf coaching and no-nonsense philosophy will benefit golfers of a wide range of skill and attitude.
From here I can also guide you in proven mind and management techniques. The mind set that you bring to the game determines not only the enjoyment you will derive from it but also the level of proficiency you will achieve.
I am always totally thrilled when I can improve the game of the beginner, middle or high handicapper. Refreshing the basic skills for the scratch player is very rewarding.
Struan Mcdowall teaching is a well co conceived concept that includes a repertoire of preferences aligned in a rational method by a coach who knows when to apply a specific method to a specific individual.
Practice, play and enjoy.
How long do you want me to take lessons?
A course of 5 to 6 lessons is ideal to start you off. Players reach flat spots when developing a new skill because the brain and the nervous system can absorb only a limited amount of knowledge. There should be a lapse of time between golf lessons so they can be assimilated before taking new ones. A lesson once a week is good .But certainly not more than 2 a week. When the Course of lessons has been learned well enough so the swing is more habit, then the player is ready for new advances.
For the most part my fundamentals and how I show you are achievable and quickly appealing to the muscles.
How often do you want me to practice?
Golf is for enjoyment. So unless you are thinking of making the pennant side, winning the club championship, turning professional, and your practice should reflect this. Practice for the crack player takes on a ‘holistic’ scheduled approach (consistent, slow & disciplined) that is not for everyone. I will always ask you what you would like to achieve. If you are playing in the Company Sponsored Pro/Am tomorrow (no practice time) I will show you things that you will be able to apply during the round so if you play a poor shot at least you will be able to follow that up with a better attempt and do your best on the day.
Your goal with practice is to build up a remembered feel of the stance and swing. Think of this as ‘The Set’. The idea is to have enough remembered feel of “the set” to last your entire round of golf.
So you can appreciate that if you turn up to the course with no practice for 6 weeks you may have enough remembered feel to last halfway down the 1st fairway. The point is that sometimes you will need a heavy practice session to top up and other times a light session.
Before your next lesson , 3 sessions at the range after a lesson is at least what you need.
Or, 2medium buckets of balls at the range and 15 minutes swinging the club in the yard at home.
I cannot perform teaching miracles unless you do some practice to absorb what you’ve been taught.
Recipe for practice;
Begin practice with the #6 iron because it combines both a full swing and control for new golfers, work hard to develop at least ‘one sure’ shot such as a pitch or a chip shot. Ref practice for the beginner.
I am at the Sandringham ‘Range’ Tuesday to Saturdays so you can always ask me a question. I am happy to help.
How often do you want me to play golf?
The trick with playing is to do it on a regular basis. That means if it is only once a month, make sure it is for say the third Sunday, at 11.30 each month. Avoid just playing on the spur of the moment if your time is limited and stick to your pre-arranged golf time. Make it fun, have a lesson, practice, enjoy the game. If you are playing once or twice a week there is not a problem here.
How long do I expect it will take me to reach my goal?
     
 
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