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As Davis Love III walked the fairways of the Oakland Hills Country Club, in contention during the final round of the 1996 U.S. Open Championship, he had a powerful ally on his side. For the rest of the nation the day may have been Father's Day, but for Love every day on a golf course is father's day.
It was Davis Love, Jr., master professional and legendary teacher, who taught his son the game in all its beautiful complexity. As a child, Davis III was encouraged just to play, to enjoy the game as he grew and developed his athletic skills, to find the pleasure in the game that can lead to the desire for improvement. But when, early in his teens, Davis III declared himself ready to take golf seriously, to put in the time to learn and understand the physical and mental components of the game that turn a golfer into a champion, his father was delighted, determined, and ready.
With every shot he takes, Davis Love III provides a tribute to the strength and the value of his father's teachings. And in Every Shot I Take, he shares with us the lessons he learned about how to play golf with power, with skill, and with joy. Those lessons range widely, from the psychological ("Let your attitude determine your golf game; don't let your golf game determine your attitude") to the physical ("To hit the ball far, hit the ball straight; I try to hit the ball at 80 percent of my overall power, because at 80 percent I have a much better chance of hitting the ball with the center of the clubface") to the technical ("When you begin your downswing, and your left foot returns to the ground, put your cleats in the same holes they were in originally"). They include drills like the Hitchhike Drill, where you place your right hand behind your back and your left thumb on your right shoulder, then in a spinning motion move your thumb to your left shoulder -- that's the golf swing in miniature! There are the Ten Commandments of Putting, six steps to successful long bunker shots, and tips for playing in the wind and rain, on fast greens, or out of long rough. Yet all are ultimately about something more than golf.
Golf was, for Davis, Jr., a way of being a father, of teaching his sons how to learn, how to approach whatever they might choose to do with knowledge and with care, how to overcome obstacles through dedication and understanding. It was the vehicle through which he taught the most important lesson of all: "Follow your dream, and enjoy the trip."
Through this moving tribute to his father's love, Davis III passes along the benefits of those lessons in a gem of a book that will improve your golf game -- and enhance your life.
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It's hard enough to carry the name of a famous father. Davis Love III took on even more pressure when he stepped into his famous father's spikes and went out, like his father before him, to earn his living on the Professional Golf Association tour. Fortunately for the son, the father was not only a fine player, he was also one of the country's most respected golf teachers, and he taught his son well. Love III's homage to Love Jr., who was killed in a plane crash, is a literal love-fest, a gracefully emotional hybrid of personal memoir and golfing wisdom. Like Harvey Penick's Little Red Book, the instructional portion of Every Shot I Take, collected from the father's compulsive note-takings, is filled with the kinds of nuggets--practical and inspirational--that golfers cling to when the sweet spot on their clubs begins to turn sour.About the Author:
Michael Bamberger was born in Patchogue, New York, in 1960. After graduating from the University of Pennsylvania in 1982, he became a newspaper reporter, first for the (Martha’s) Vineyard Gazette, later with The Philadelphia Inquirer. Since 1995 he has been a senior writer for Sports Illustrated. He and his wife, Christine, live in Philadelphia.
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