Hilton Head Island is a golfer’s candy store with dozens of designer golf courses meticulously maintained at affordable prices. Add atop, like sprinkles on a sundae, clinics from some of the best instructors in the world and you’ll take indelible memories and an awesome swing home with you.
You can’t go wrong with pointers from any PGA-certified instructor on Hilton Head Island or
Bluffton, but if you want a little extra showmanship, seek out Doug Weaver, director of instruction at Palmetto Dunes Oceanfront Resort.
I arrived recently for a short-game clinic at the Arthur Hills course with instruction under way. Doug quickly introduced me to my classmates, Doug Sisson of Greensburg, Pa., and Robert Stenhammer, who runs a local property management company.
The interruption in practice was one of many, many to come as Doug stopped us to make a point, provide an example, or do a quick Socrates session in which he tossed to each of us a question. (It pays to pay attention.)
He might use as an example a conversation he had with a PGA Tour player in town for the RBC Heritage or a lesson he learned while on the PGA Tour himself.
“Golf is a social game.”
“One swing, 14 clubs.”
“Let gravity (or centrifugal force) do the work.”
Doug captured my swing on a smartphone app that recorded my swing and advanced it frame by frame. In an instant, Doug saw my fatal flaw: I wasn’t turning my lower body, leaving the task pretty much to my arms. I hadn’t played in a while and I had gotten stiff and lazy, but Doug would have no part of excuses. I like that about him.
In a little while with a few more tips and minimal effort, I looked like a golfer again.
Doug Sisson had the right idea: The first time he pulled a club out of his bag this year after a snowy Pennsylvania winter, it was under the watchful eye of Doug Weaver.
“I took a lesson from Doug last year,” Doug Sisson said. “It changed my game. That’s why I’m back this year. Doug really makes a difference.”
I highly recommend starting your Hilton Head golf vacation with a lesson or two. No matter where your golf game is when you arrive on Hilton Head Island, it can be so much better in a short order, thanks to the expertise of PGA instructors at Palmetto Dunes.