The precious lesson Rickie Fowler discovered on the vary as a child

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LOS ANGELES — Rickie Fowler didn’t study to like the sport at a rustic membership; he acquired his work in at a spread in Murrieta, Calif., with Barry McDonnell, his first coach.

McDonnell, who died in 2011 at age 75, had a significant affect on Fowler’s life — his signature was Fowler’s first tattoo — and Fowler’s dad and mom trusted him to show their son, usually dropping him off on the vary to study below McDonnell and selecting him up at darkish.

“I spent most likely virtually as a lot time with him as I did my household rising up,” Fowler stated.

One of many classes McDonnell taught Fowler was the best way to work the ball each methods and be artistic along with his ball-striking, which Fowler talked about on a GOLF Subpar Podcast look in 2020. McDonnell was old style, Fowler stated, and he most likely didn’t know the best way to work a video digicam to document and watch Fowler’s swing anyway.


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“It was very a lot, ‘Exit and hit pictures,’” Fowler stated. “If I used to be drawing it an excessive amount of or chopping it an excessive amount of, he’d be like, ‘Alright, hit a few hooks and see the place we’re at from there.’ Form of dig it out of the grime.”

Fowler stated the strategy helped him study the basics with out getting too mechanical.

“Like, if I used to be sitting there he’d say, ‘Let’s hit a draw from this pin over to right here,’ as a result of the vary I grew up on may be very flat. There’s some pins on the market, however fortunately it’s all grass so you might be getting the true impact, you aren’t hitting off a mat. Simply studying the best way to hit golf pictures.

“It’s not essentially instructing, ‘OK, you must be on this place to do that,’ he continued. “It’s like, ‘Alright, you must hit it from right here and make it go to there, determine it out.’ So as soon as I acquired on the golf course and even at present, typically I’m going again to pondering swing ideas are out the window. … I believe that was a superb factor that taught me the creativeness of it and with the ability to hit pictures when you’re on the market on the golf course making an attempt to visualise these issues when there may be nothing actually there to have a look at.”

You possibly can observe the ultimate spherical of the U.S. Open right here, as Fowler searches for his first profession main title.

Josh Berhow

Golf.com Editor

Josh Berhow is the managing editor at GOLF.com. The Minnesota native graduated with a journalism diploma from Minnesota State College in Mankato. You possibly can attain him at joshua_berhow@golf.com.

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