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Center’s doors swing open

Scratch Golf Accelerated launches local store to offer training

Posted: June 17, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: June 17, 2011 1:55 a.m.

Doug Dannevik, left, an instructor for Scratch Golf Accelerated, speaks to a group during the training center’s grand opening in Santa Clarita on Saturday. The center operates an indoor, climate-controlled arena to teach golf.

 

A unique golf-training program, Scratch Golf Accelerated, opened its doors this week in Santa Clarita for players of all skill levels.

Operating in an indoor, climate-controlled arena, Scratch Golf’s lessons are not like those usually offered at golf courses.

It’s a training program for both young people and adults alike.

For those too intimidated to learn the sport at a driving range in front of others, the new training center groups one instructor with four people, and golfers learn to play the game using a variety of simulators and drills designed to improve technique and create muscle memory.

After each session, statistics are posted on a member’s profile so an adult member, or the parent of an enrolled child, can see exactly how the member performed in the last session, said Jonathan Hastings, sales and marketing manager.

“We guarantee increasing your ability to play golf by 20 percent,” said Hastings.

Muscle memory
The program puts players through different drills in each session with an instructor. Students rotate from putting green, chipping green, bunker and four PGA simulators, and students practice each repetitively in separate sessions, creating muscle memory in movements and strokes.

As players stand on balance plates that measure whether a player is leaning too far to the right or left, or putting too much weight on the front or back foot, data is captured analyzing how a golfer stance could be affecting play.

Other aspects of the game measured include putting. The data collected allows the player to see how many putts or chips are making it into the cup or target, giving the golfer information along the way to know how he or she is progressing as a player.

Using the PGA simulators, instructors and golfers break down their movements and skills by video and watch their games on 10-foot screens.

For younger players, instructors focus on developing speed and strength. Adults work on flexibility and balance.
Instructors hold parent-teacher conferences for parents in the program.

Young professionals
Twenty-five percent of all women’s golf scholarships, and 10 to 15 percent of all scholarships for young men, go unused, he added.

Scratch Golf is trying to create awareness for the sport, and help prepare young men and women for college and to be eligible for those scholarships.

“We have the ability to train a pro golfer,” Hastings said.

Scratch Golf Accelerated
The vision for the training program came from owners Vikash Sanyal and Greg Lumsden.

A founder of Odyssey golf putters and Never Compromise putters, Sanyal joined with golfing enthusiast Greg Lumsden to create the Scratch Golf Accelerated program.

The curriculum was developed by popular PGA golf coaches Rick Smith and Tina Mickelson, sister of pro golfer Phil Mickelson.

There wasn’t a training regimen that would improve people’s golf games faster,” Hastings said. “The owners came up with an idea to create a popular way to train.”

The instructors work under golf professional Doug Dannevick. A one-time volleyball coach, Dannevick perfected the concept of team training. He went on to become a PGA golf professional, Hastings said.

Moving to Valencia from San Luis Obispo a couple of months ago to open this training center, Dannevick is a “community guy” with a lot of passion for the sport.

“He’s a wonderful guy to work with,” Hastings said. “He truly understands how to train and get along with all ages.”

City of choice
Santa Clarita is home to Scratch Golf Accelerated’s second location.

A privately owned company, the training firm searched communities throughout Southern California before settling on Santa Clarita. The team also scouted locations in Orange County and the San Fernando Valley.

“We wanted to find the best communities, a family town,” Hastings said. “We were so absolutely blessed to find Santa Clarita.”

Leagues
Membership lengths range from one, to three, six or 12 months, and golfers choose whether they want to train one, two or three times per week. Each session is 75 minutes. Membership fees average $42 per session.

In July, Scratch Golf is also launching junior and adult leagues. Foursomes will play on simulators, competing on the putting and chipping greens as well as the sand bunker. The leagues are elementary-school age, junior high and adult.

Scratch Golf Accelerated is located at 25621 Hercules St., Santa Clarita, and can be reached at (661) 775-0578 or www.scratchjrgolf.com.

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