The 2011 golf season is still in its infancy, but Adam Hadwin has already mastered a pair of skills that will serve him well as he progresses in his pro career.
The first skill is self-analysis. After missing a pair of cuts at events in Columbia last month, Hadwin set up a video camera to break down his swing. He noticed that his fundamentals had gone a little wacky – a product of playing in 60-kilometre-per-hour winds the previous week – and he was able to make the appropriate fixes.
The adjustments yielded the 23-year-old Abbotsford pro’s first victory of the year – a six-stroke triumph at the Pacific Columbia Tour Championship in Bogota on March 27.
The other important advancement Hadwin’s made? Learning how to shake a case of the hiccups.
During the first round the Pacific Columbia Championship, an unwanted case of diaphragm spasms plagued him throughout the opening round.
“I think I may have eaten breakfast too fast that day,” Hadwin related with a wry chuckle during a recent interview. “I didn’t think too much of it – it’ll go away, right? But I was hiccupping on the bus all the way to the course. They went away during my warm-up, but in the middle of the round, they came back.
“They kind of went off and on all day. They’d go away for 45 minutes, and then they’d come back.”
Fortunately, the 23-year-old from Abbotsford managed to avoid any hiccups during his swings, and he carded a sparkling round of six-under 66 – a solid foundation for his eventual victory.
After the round, Hadwin tried everything he could think of to get rid of the hiccups, but drinking copious amounts of water and holding his breath didn’t seem to work.
“Finally, at about 10 at night, I tried drinking water upside down, and that finally got rid of it,” he said with a laugh. “You just take a water bottle, put it in your mouth, then you lean back over a bed so your head is hanging upside down. Then you suck the water in. You take three or four gulps, and then when you get up from that, you hold your breath. Then you should be good to go.
“Thank goodness I didn’t have a hiccup while hitting or putting. That could have resulted in some serious bad shots.”
The victory in Bogota is a major confidence booster for Hadwin as his sophomore season on the Canadian Tour begins in earnest in May. The Abbotsford golfer finished second on the CanTour’s order of merit during his spectacular rookie season.
The two missed cuts in Columbia prior to his recent win were somewhat stunning to Hadwin. He didn’t miss a single cut on a recognized tour in 2010, including eight CanTour starts, the Nationwide Tour’s Wayne Gretzky Classic, and the PGA Tour’s RBC Canadian Open.
“It sounds kind of arrogant, but I was shocked, like ‘What just happened?'” he said. “It was almost like a reality check.
“I didn’t know what to do with myself on the weekend.”
With his game – and the hiccups – in check, it’s clear Hadwin is back on track.