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 CARLY FROST
 Editor
 Ladies Golf Today

Carly's blog - news and views on the world of ladies' golf
December 20, 2011

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Congratulations Caroline!

This week's blog is dedicated to Caroline Hedwall who has won the coveted Ladies European Tour Rolex Rookie of the Year Award. The 22-year-old from Barsebäck, Sweden has been one of the most impressive female golfers in the world this year, demonstrated by the fact that she earned nearly 280,000 Euros, more than double the earnings of any previous rookie in the 32-year history of the LET. I was incredibly fortunate to spend a couple of hours one-on-one with Caroline back in May at the Portuguese Ladies Open. At the time she was quite a shy, unassuming golfer who clearly had an incredibly natural talent and great attitude towards the game. She really didn't know how good she was. Yet six months on she has certainly made her mark on the women's game. After breezing through Tour School, winning by nine clear shots, she won her maiden tournament as a professional, the New South Wales Open in Australia on the ALPG Tour in January. On the LET, she won the Allianz Ladies Slovak Open in May, Finnair Masters in July, UNIQA Ladies Golf Open in Austria in September, and the Hero Women's Indian Open just a week ago. She was a captain's selection to the European team for the 2011 Solheim Cup in Ireland clawing back from two down in her singles match to get a crucial half and upstaged Ryder Cup stars by winning the inaugural PowerPlay Golf Championship at Celtic Manor in Wales.

"To be honest, I can hardly believe this year," said Caroline. "I mean it's just been so good and if you told me I would have won four times on the LET I probably wouldn't have believed you. I can't relate to it yet because I need some time off just to think back on this year, but it's been unbelievable."

What a great ambassador for the game she will be in the coming years, and who knows, if she keeps this sort of form up, she just may go onto be the next Women's World Number One and follow in the footsteps of her hero Annika Sorenstam. I, for one, will be excited watching her...

Fashion for the fairway: It's time to wrap up warm!

You may have noticed that in my last few blogs, courtesy of Nike, I've been dressed rather smartly and most importantly as temperatures plummet, warmly, sporting a lot of swooshes on my clothing!

Not only is Nike apparel stylish and very comfortable to wear it's packed full of technical features, which essentially explains why despite falling temperatures I've still been enjoying playing a round of golf even on those bitterly cold days. Want to get the look for your wardrobe? Here's an outfit that looks great and is very functional too...

Nike Novelty Golf Knee Socks (£20):

Cleverly hidden from sight beneath the waterproof bottoms but an absolute essential as far as I'm concerned. The only time I'd ever worn long socks before this pair arrived was on the ski slopes but I can't believe what I've been missing - wonderful warm feet and legs. Unlike the long socks you can buy on the high street, these golf socks have been designed to stay up without being uncomfortably tight around the calf.

Nike Thermal Golf Shirt (£35) :

An absolute essential as far as I'm concerned. This base layer top is lovely and soft against your skin, trapping heat yet preventing you from overheating. It has added panels that provide support in all the right places so that you can get into golf posture and maintain it.

Nike Global Golf Sweater (£50) :

For a lightweight jumper this is surprisingly warm. It fits like a glove preventing that horrible bagging you get from some bulky jumpers, again so that you can swing freely, but with the added layer of warmth.

Nike StormFit Waterproof Suit (£100):

This jacket has a very clever design with a hood that is stored in a zip compartment around your neck, which when not used gives you a lovely comfortable padded feeling, or in-use acts as a great added barrier to rain. The fit is snug thanks to Velcro adjusters so that you can swing and putt freely without the jacket getting in your way.

I must confess that the trousers are getting a touch dirty around the base but they are still more fashionable than the boring black trousers that most people choose. They're very comfortable, soft touch material, with an elasticated waist allowing you to tuck in all your layers of clothing neatly.

I like the little touches like the zip pockets so that your tees don't fall out as you walk and also the Velcro adjusters at the bottom of the leg so that you can keep the trouser tight around the shoe and save mud getting on your socks.

Nike Knit Hat & Scarf (£35) :

The final touches, that all-important headwear. The nice thing about this woolly hat is that it is very fashionable so you feel as though you can wear it on or off the course.

It also comes with a matching scarf to complement your look.

NEW GEAR

TaylorMade launch new woods:

Rocket by name, rocket by nature...

TaylorMade has unveiled a fancy new line of fairway woods and rescues for next year named RocketBallz after their amazing rocket-like launch capabilities.

This easy high launch comes thanks to a high-strength steel face plate welded to the body, a clever sole design with a 'speed pocket' that improves head and face flexibility and a deeper face with a further forward centre of gravity location (for a high launch and low spin). Add to that a lighter shaft and grip and the result is massive distance gains.
In fact TaylorMade tested the new RocketBallz woods against their predecessors and top players gained an average of 17 yards more distance - amazing!

The TaylorMade RocketBallz fairway woods cost £179 and the rescues cost £139. There is also a Tour version with a slightly smaller head shape preferred by better players. Visit www.taylormadegolf.eu for more information.

Tried & tested: VIVOBAREFOOT Hybrid golf shoes

You may remember that a few weeks ago I showed you a sneak peek of a revolutionary new golf shoe that can be worn without socks - the VIVOBAREFOOT Hybrid. Well I couldn't wait to try out this shoe sockless and there was no better opportunity than in the Moroccan heat last week, a country where I would really feel the benefit of not having to wear socks. The verdict? Amazing! These are without doubt the most comfortable golf shoes I've ever worn. They are incredibly lightweight and soft on the foot, with no harsh pressure points. The lacing system pulls the shoe in nice and tight so that you feel like it envelops your whole foot. The shoes' developers claim it will improve your swing control and balance on the golf course (or Proprioception as they call it, which is the ability for your body to sense the forces acting on it) however I actually found the opposite. Because balance is poor in my swing anyway, wearing a less structured shoe meant that my lazy footwork was very evident and I easily spun out of shots. But that's definitely a part of my swing and technique I'm going to have to work on this winter.

My only criticism is that they're not massively stylish. I'd like to see a couple of more feminine colours on offer. At £100 a pair the Hybrid isn't cheap, but if you want a really comfortable shoe you won't be disappointed. Your feet will literally feel like they are treading on soft feathers as you walk down the fairway. Available in ladies sizes 3-8, www.vivobarefoot.com

Fitness update:

You are what you eat and drink, quite literally...

With Christmas just days away our attentions will soon be focused on eating, drinking and enjoying ourselves. But while I don't want to put you off tucking into your delicious Turkey dinner, our resident golf fitness expert and C.H.E.K practitioner Scott Bryant has been giving me some tips on how to eat a healthy Christmas dinner without putting on weight. Yes it is possible to eat fat without getting fat! In fact, Scott's golden rules for our Turkey dinner should apply to all the meals you eat throughout the year. If you follow the guidelines you'll not only feel healthier, but you'll be fitter for the new golfing season too...

Rule No. 1: Buy organic food

That means buying organic, whole foods (hardly processed, if at all), rather than meat or diary that has been farmed on lands where chemicals are ploughed into the ground to speed growth and the cattle are pumped full of hormones to grow fatter and supply more milk. These harmful toxins are stored in the animal's fat and therefore passed onto you in your food. Organic certified food is the most natural, healthy food and will make you a stronger, healthier person.

Rule No. 2: Never cut fat out

Go on, admit it, how many of you will go on a 'low-fat' diet come January 1st ? We'll all be thinking of shedding a few pounds after an over-indulgent Christmas, but low-fat diets are a nutritional disaster for your body. The big misconception is that you must cut out fat to lose fat. In fact you need fat in your diet to lose weight. Without fat the body doesn't function correctly and it starts to store fat. That's because we are all designed to eat fat. Fat keeps us warm and it regulates hormones and keeps the liver running smoothly. The key is to make sure you are eating the 'right' fats. Examples of good fats include:
* Organic free-range meat and fish
* Fresh nuts and seeds (but not roasted)
* Olive oil, coconut oil and clarified butter (and yes, goose fat counts, so roast those potatoes!)

Rule No. 3: Eat your food in the right proportions

Why do you eat your Christmas dinner then fall asleep on the sofa? The answer is because you haven't eaten your food in the right proportions for you metabolic type. Your metabolic type is like your genetic fingerprint. Every individual is built differently and has different nutritional needs. That means knowing what proportion of fats to proteins to carbohydrates you need to eat for your body to function effectively. Getting those proportions wrong results in the body going into crisis and shutting down, hence you fall asleep. The below chart shows you how there are three types: carbohydrate type (slow oxidiser), mixed type and protein type (fast oxidiser). In the New Year Scott will go into these metabolic types in more detail and help you identify which type you are. In the meantime, the easiest way to find out is to start eating your proteins, carbohydrates and fats in different proportions to one another and see what diet you feel healthiest on.

Rule No. 4: Drink plenty of water

Water is the one essential ingredient to life. Your body is made up of 75% water. Drinking water will help to detoxify your system after your over-indulgent Christmas dinner, removing all the harmful toxins from your body. But like your food intake try to consume purified water, ideally bottled or filtered, from a source that is pure. Unfortunately our tap water is far from perfect, just think alone of what the water has passed through before it comes out of the tap! The correct quantity of water to drink every day is approximately half an ounce of water for every pound of body weight.

How to prevent a hangover!

Yes it is possible. The golden rule is never to drink alcohol before eating a meal. Drinking on an empty stomach can cause hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar). The typical response is to eat convenience/snack foods like crisps, nuts and bread. These will cause you to pile on the pounds. Instead you must always eat a fat or protein-based food before that glass of wine or beer touches your lips. Most people make the mistake of lining their stomach with carbohydrates, instead, have a nice cheese, some of the leftover Turkey dinner or even a steak before you start drinking, and try to match your alcohol intake to water intake.

For more about Scott Bryant visit www.activebryantsystems.com or to book a free one-hour physical assessment with Scott contact him on: 07841 14478, email: scttbrynt@aol.com








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