I was born in the middle of the night amidst the worst blizzard of that winter. To my parents horror, the doctor said there were complications. My umbilical cord was wrapped around my neck, cutting the oxygen to my brain for over a minute. This lead to my disability known as Cerebral Palsy. The doctor told my parents that they would have to wait and see if I would even be able to walk (let alone eventually play golf avidly)! As you can probably guess, my CP turned out to be rather mild, however I still had to do my fair share of physical therapy in my younger years. This was terribly boring, and to a certain extent, embarrassing. With my parents help I sought out alternatives to traditional physical therapy ranging from horseback riding to karate. Then one fateful day, when I was about 12 years old, a relative gave me a driver and a 7 iron. As excited as I was to have received them, I was unable to use them because they were right handed. That was a bit of a let down since I played every sport left handed. So my dad traded them in for a pair of lefty’s! I took to golf like, well, you get the idea!
I practiced for hours in my back yard with that 7 iron. My grandfather, who became my earliest coach, said I had the most natural swing he had ever seen. I asked my parents for a full set of clubs the Christmas before my first year of high school. I had intentions of going out for the schools golf team. I practiced that entire spring, summer, and fall leading into my freshman year of high school. I thought for sure I’d make the team that spring! That was not to be as I broke my right arm 3 consecutive times over the course of my first year. When tryouts came around my arm was so atrophied I was unable to do anything but putt! But I knew I had a year to rehab. Every portion of my workouts dealt with some aspect of the game of golf. And education of course. My grandfather was wise enough to understand that my only chance to make my high school’s team was to have an impeccable short game. To the extent that he would not even let me hit my driver, only my 3 wood off the tee. Well after an entire year of workouts, practice in the back yard, occasional range work, and weekly visits to the chip&put course, I made the JV team and my love affair with the mistress we all love (and hate) began in earnest! This is also where my ideas behind the “Back Yard Golf” methodology that I will continue to elaborate upon originated.
By the end of my high school career I had made the Varsity team, I only got into one match though because my game simply wasn’t long enough off the tee. I’d one-putt all the time, but it would take me 4 to 5 strokes to get to that point (doesn’t make for a stellar 9-hole score card!). My coach preferred that I help teach the younger players since I had such a pure swing, and being lefty, a mirror image of those righty’s I was teaching. I did not protest, I actually liked teaching the game. I loved seeing a “young” (or “rookie” if you prefer) player hit a great shot after I’d help him or her. Which leads my story to the “us” part, and the origins of JaysGolf.com.
Around the time of our senior year, one of my best friends, Scott (yes the Scott of Scottsdeals.com) took an interest in golf and asked if I’d help him out. After a bit of protest by him regarding my stressing the fundamentals first, he finally listened to me and did a summers worth of “back yard” work. I can still remember how excited and proud he was to play a solid round with me on the course after having put in the fundamental work it takes to be good at this game. I can also recall how proud of him I was as we played that first full round, and how excited I was to now have a good friend to play rounds with. Oh, and the fact that Scott is also a lefty made our partnership that much more fun. Well, eventually, the student began to beat the teacher!
As time went on Scott’s brain child for the ITechConnect’s “family” of web sites came to fruition and JaysGolf.com was born. With our mutual love of golf, Scott’s technical know-how, and my passion for teaching and playing the game, we intend to make JaysGolf.com a one stop destination for everything related to the game of golf.