3 for 3

Hello, everybody! I hope everyone is enjoying their Sunday evening. I am in Atlantic City enjoying a nice dinner and getting ready to head home for a week off. The tour is headed to Canada, but I will be busy with a clinic, practicing with Todd, and a relaxing weekend at Sutton Bay.

Today completed a three week stretch for me where I saw the weekend every time. While I am still pretty frustrated with parts of my game, I’ve seen some improvement in different areas and am doing a better job of simply getting the ball in the hole.

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*Final shot into the 18th at the Kingsmill Championship

This stretch started in Kingsmill where I saw my ball striking finally make a turn for the better. I actually felt like I was holding a golf club and not a hockey stick like I had the previous few weeks. I finished in the mid 30’s and was happy to make a check.

I drove 10 hours with a tour friend up to Ann Arbor, Michigan for the Volvik Championship and I think I saw it all this week. I had some good holes, some bad holes, and way to many bogeys from the middle of the fairway. 😦 However, Ann Arbor is an awesome town to spend a week and regardless of my play I enjoyed the week very much. Every time I go my “must go restaurants” list gets even longer. There really aren’t enough meals in a day.

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*Caroline and I found two of the cutest hole volunteers in Ann Arbor! 

Finally, we come to Atlantic City! Always my favorite stop on tour. I’m just in love with playing this golf course. The poa greens were better than ever and we had some chamber of commerce weather the whole week. I was also paired with one of my absolute favorite playing partners, Pernilla Lindberg. I remember playing with Pernilla early in my career and thinking if I could have just half of the fight she has for every shot that I would have a great career. Having the opportunity to play with her is always a good reminder of that and I felt I found that fight in myself again today. It wasn’t the lowest round of the day, or even best round of the year for me, but I fought hard for every shot and climbed the leaderboard a few spots.

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*Good times tearing up the pro-am party with the Austad’s crew.  I hope they let them back in again next year. 😉 

I’ll go home this week and keep working on the parts of my game that are letting me down and decide on the rest of my summer schedule. Theres a balance between playing enough events to make a good living and taking off weeks in order to play “your best” when you are playing. I lean towards playing EVERYTHING but I know that in the end, it may not be in my best interest. I need to find the balance where I always have quality play over quantity.

20170604_141402*A couple good fans that always drive from Lancaster, PA to watch me play this week.  I have such great fans no matter where I play! 🙂

Have a great week and I’ll be back in action after this week in Grand Rapids for the Meijer Classic!

Best,

KK

Onwards, Upwards

Hello, everyone. I apologize for the delay in writing a new blog, I know this is long overdue. I’m in Indiana tonight for an outing tomorrow and thought it was time to put some words to paper. It has been a long and trying stretch for a few weeks now but I feel things are making a turn for the better (or at least I hope 😉

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*Hawaii’s cutest fans. I think they brought me my Sunday 66. 🙂

I remember writing a blog in August last year in the midst of what felt like the worst stretch ever. I was missing cuts by one shot in big events and felt that I was never going to find my way out. I was beginning to feel that way when I couldn’t find the driving range in Mexico. And no, it wasn’t the margaritas. Honestly, I was quite thankful it was a match play event and I was able to spare myself the humility of posting a score.

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*My fellow Sanford Health and Dakota girl Amy Anderson. Proud to represent both!
So, I come home from Mexico Thursday night after I played (the benefit of living in DFW) and I didn’t know where to even start. Sometimes you feel you work SO hard day in and day out and the game keeps giving you nothing. I took Friday off, cleaned the apartment top to bottom which serves as a strange sort of “lets start over” therapy, and hit the range on Saturday with a clear task from my coach to help get my swing back on track.

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*Team Kaufman working hard in Dallas. Apparently Todd said to keep your head down.

I spent a lot of hours on the “little nine” at Shady Oaks this week and slowly but surely I found the center of the club face again. I will be the guest at the Deaconess Golf Classic in Evansville, Indiana tomorrow and then fly to Williamsburg, VA on Tuesday for the Kingsmill Championship. The LPGA tour begins a 12 week stretch tomorrow, of which I will play either 10 or 11. THIS is when the season really gets going and I can say I’m ready to get after it.

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*A few of my absolute favorite people on tour in Dallas for the Angela Stanford Foundation Pro-am. 

I saw Ian Poulter finished 2nd at the Players Championship today. Whether you are a fan or not, to watch a Ryder Cup-er go from the top of the game, to nearly losing his card (saved by Brian Gay!) to finishing second in today’s event gives hope to anyone going thru a tough time. He is the definition of persistence and determination. As a player, I know how hard it is, and I commend him for his efforts and congratulate him for his accomplishment. Stories like that give hope and a reminder to any player going thru a tough stretch that a second place finish may be right around the corner.

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*Sometimes you just need to relax and have a facial. #thingsyoudon’tseeonthePGAtour

I appreciate everyone’s support no matter how I play, but hope to give you something to cheer for in the coming weeks!

Best,
KK

Ft. Worth —> California

Hello from DFW! I got home to Ft. Worth late Tuesday night after a three week road trip and a final 19 hour drive home from Temecula, CA. So, its hard to believe I’m packed and ready to go again after a 3 day “off week.” However, I haven’t been on a plane since coming home from Singapore so I am thankful for that.

If you’ve been living under a rock, I’ll inform you that it is Masters weekend. My saturday flight to Hawaii today was specifically planned to I can wake up tomorrow and watch the final round instead of traveling on Masters Sunday and missing EVERYTHING!

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*Opening the ANA Inspiration with a traditional Japanese Sake drum ceremony. 

Before we get to the Masters each year, though, the LPGA kicks of the Major season with the ANA Inspiration (formerly the Kraft Nabisco) in Rancho Mirage, CA. I have two topics I would like to comment on before moving on from this for good. First, my own tournament play. In the past, this has been a tournament that has gotten the best of me. I have worked hard all year to change my thoughts and feelings towards the course and event. I played an even par Thursday round and felt I really turned a corner. I fought back from a 2 over start and was there to make birdies. Friday, on the other hand, was like deja vu. I felt anxious about the cut line and started pressing from the third hole on. It was one of those days when you start to question everything you’re doing.

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*Practice at Mission Hills.  

A couple days later, when thinking more clearly, I realized I had gone back to some old habits: looking at the leaderboard too much, trying to predict the cut line mid round, and comparing myself to other players. I know, more than ever now, that I absolutely have to stop. I have to live in my own world and not even open the leaderboard app. between rounds.  I have to focus solely on myself out there because thats the only thing I can control. This may sound super easy for some, but with my personality I know it is not. It is a very big challenge for me, but one I must take on and commit to every week. If I can learn to live inside my own little world week in and week out I know I will see some better and more consistent results.

*Lots of matching going on at the ANA last week with Kris Tamulis and Angela Stanford. 🙂

Second, the rules violation that occurred during the second round has been hot topic all week. As a player, I have to say first that my heart goes out to each player. Lexi was clearly running away with the event and had it taken away, So Yeon won fairly by the rules but everyone wants to put an asterisk by it. I’m sure both girls left the event with a funny feeling in their stomach; not the way it should be. So, here is my thought on the rule. We, the professional golfing community, need to get a hold on our own sport. I stand firmly against call ins from viewers at home for a couple reasons. One, not every single shot is shown on tv. Some players could violate a different rule on every hole and never get caught. Two, there is no other sport or competition in the world that allows anybody other than the referee to call the game. There are probably many times where replay would show that a player could also have gained more with a different ball spotting etc, but those aren’t every called in. Nobody ever gets to minus a shot or two or FOUR from their score. Finally, every round isn’t treated the same. If a viewer was to call in on Monday, it wouldn’t be reviewed once the tournament is closed. How is that ok? That’s like saying there will be no booth reviews allowed in the 4th quarter of an NFL game. What a laughable thought.

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*My pro am group from the ANA included two LPGA commissioners and Tommy Thayer of Kiss. Always fun playing with celebrities!

At the end of the day, golf was built on etiquette. Only the player knows if a violation is intentional or not. Only the players in his or her group are responsible for policing play. It’s not a perfect system, but there never will be. We need to take control of our competitions and stop allowing such fiascos to overshadow the incredible play and deserving victories. I sincerely hope I see a change in this policy very soon. At the very least, allow reviews to be made ONLY on the day of play, and then take away the penalty for an incorrect score card. That would at least be moving in the right direction.

 

*I made a quick trip to Temecula, CA for the Kore Am pro am on Monday before driving home.  The picture on the left doesn’t do this view justice.  Amazing drive from Palm Springs to Temecula.

I had two good days working with my coach in Ft. Worth this week. He decided to make a quick trip down to work out a few kinks before heading to Hawaii. I’m very lucky to have a coach that always makes the time and the trip when I need it most!

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*Working on some “miscellaneous shots” that I don’t often practice with my coach.  Let’s hope I don’t need to use them. 🙂

Here’s to lots of birdies in Hawaii!
KK

Up and Up!

Hi everybody! I’m writing this blog from windy Palm Springs, California. It isn’t often we get windy days here, but when it blows it really blows! This is the site of our first major of the year, and I thought I would take you thru what my plan is to get prepped for the week.
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*My fan club in Phoenix.  We celebrated 3 birthdays that week! 

The best thing about this week is that it is only a two hour drive from our last event in Carlsbad, CA, so I was here by 6:30 last night. I knew the forecast was calling for wind so I was up and at the course before 7, and on the range by 7:30. I really wanted to “chart” my wedges and we need minimal wind. Charting wedges merely means I’m going to hit 5-6 balls with each grip and/or swing length and take the average of those shots. It’s the one time my caddie stands willingly on the range and lets me hit balls at her. 🙂
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*Dropping the puck at the San Diego Gulls game last week. 
We headed to the course shortly after I finished my wedges and played the back nine. I focused a lot on chipping and bunkers because I feel that is not well represented in the practice area this week. After I finished playing I did a little swing work and some putting, but the wind really picked up so I felt it wasn’t worth it to stand on the range and beat balls.

 

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*My San Fransisco host family moved to Carlsbad! I’m so lucky to have these guys cheer me on!

After I left the course I actually went and got a facial. Yes, we often do random things like that on the road. It’s relaxing, and if I don’t do it on the road I probably never will! It is always important to do things away from the course to get your mind off of golf. Perhaps even more important during a major.

 

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*LPGA photo shoot for new head shots and sponsors. 🙂

I plan to play at least 9, maybe 18 tomorrow, practice after and then attend the pro am party tomorrow night. It’s a full day but I’m looking forward to it. Wednesday I will play 9 holes of a pro am and get some good practice hours in. I am really looking forward to this week. My game feels as good as it has all year and I’m ready for it to reflect in my scoring. We were close last week; I’m excited to keep building on that!

Send some good vibes to California, please!

KK

Honda LPGA Thailand - Day 3

CHONBURI, THAILAND – FEBRUARY 25: Kim Kaufman of United States plays the shot during the Honda LPGA Thailand at Siam Country Club on February 25, 2017 in Chonburi, Thailand. (Photo by Thananuwat Srirasant/Getty Images)

 

Mindset

Hello from Singapore! I have just finished a partial practice round but unfortunately was rained out! Thankfully I have a great caddie that has walked the course and knows what we need to do even if I haven’t seen every hole.

On my last flight I was loaned a book about blogging from a friend on tour and if I learned only one things its that my blogs are probably too long! So, I’m going to start taking a different approach and write shorter (difficult task for me), but hopefully more often.

I just finished a very up and down week but for as many things that disappointed me I know that there were many positive to take aways as well. I write to my mental coaches at Vision54 every other week and thought maybe I would share with you what I wrote to them. A completely unfiltered look at what goes thru a tour players mind when they finish an event (or at least my crazy mind ;).

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*Dinner with the Fraser’s in Australia.  So great to see them every year!

So I started off by making a list of the positives:

-Bringing round 1 back from +4 to +1
-Making 7 birdies in round 2
-Making balance/tempo/tension practice a part of my daily routine (I could write a whole     blog about this, but just go with me here).
-Playing my first three holes of the day on the range
-Letting my “swing feel” come to me in the moment instead of deciding before the round (something I strive for).

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*Quick tuk-tuk ride to dinner for Audrey’s birthday in Thailand. 

Then I expressed what I felt where two areas I needed to improve on:

-I need to get my putting together. I feel I am all over the map. I find myself trying to “steer” my putts and become timid. I am focused on my stroke, even though I don’t want to be, and it results in a stroke that isn’t very fluid or natural. How can I step up and putt on the course as I do on the practice green?
-I found myself struggling to decide between my gut instinct and the “disciplined” shot. How can we work out which is the best time to use each?

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*Honda LPGA Thailand gala dinner with my roomie Angela and good friend Alena.

From here I will likely receive answers from them in the form of practice plans, ideas to try, and questions to ask myself in order to get to the bottom of it. While I know we can often make the game look easy its a forever learning process that requires assistance from coaches in the technical and mental areas. As a players, I think one of the easiest ways to help yourself get better is being able to distinguish when you need help technically vs. mentally. It is way to easy to call up your swing coach and blame it on him or her, when in reality you might just need to look in the mirror and face what’s going on inside your own mind. 🙂

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*Bitters and Love in Singapore. A must go if you’re ever in the city. 🙂

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*Breakfast with orangutans at the Singapore Zoo with Alena and Brittany!

I hope you enjoyed the insight today!

KK

Let’s Go!

Good Monday morning everybody! I absolutely can’t believe its been over 2 months since my last blog! Time has absolutely flown by and here I am in my 4th year on the LPGA already. I have had a great off season spending most of my time in Ft. Worth and just finished up a promising first event in the Bahamas.

Let’s start with the off season. I think if you took a poll and asked people what they thought we did in the off season you wold be surprised at the vast array of answers. I’ve heard everything from exercising and dieting to playing golf every day to working a part time job. In reality, everyone is pretty different. For myself, I need to stay away from the golf course from Thanksgiving thru the end of the year. Don’t get me wrong, there are some beautiful days where I would very much enjoy heading to the course for a few hours. However, I know in the long run, come around the end of August, I’m going to be glad I take that time off. The season is an incredibly long marathon, and as my coach likes to say, “you don’t run the Kentucky Derby every day.” Second, it’s a time that for a few precious weeks of the year I relish in the routine daily activities of a “normal” lifestyle. I love love LOVE what I do and the places I travel and the time I am away, but at the end of a 10 month golf/travel campaign, seeking normalcy is the best thing I can find.

While I tried my best to “stay put” in Ft. Worth and get to know my new home, there were a few occasions where I had to pack a bag and head to the airport. I went to Phoenix to escape a bad stretch of weather here in early January. I have great friends there to see and stay with and it was chance for me to see my mental coaches at Vision54 before the season started. It ended up being a very busy and productive trip. The cold weather in Texas was a blessing in disguise.

I also headed out to Carlsbad a week later for a club fitting. I had heard everyone talking so much about the new Callaway Epic driver so I was excited to test it out. It didn’t take me long to switch out all my old heads for the new Epic line. I played the driver, three wood, and five wood this week in the Bahamas. I stayed in California for a couple extra days and was very fortunate to play at Tradition in La Quinta and Mission Hills in Rancho Mirage (site of the ANA Inspiration, our first major). Tradition was really unlike anything I had every played. It took desert golf to a new level and how the course is positioned right against the mountains is just stunning. It was for sure one of the best days of my off season. I was especially thankful to my partner, Juli Inkster, for chipping in for eagle on 18 and saving us 50 bucks. 😉

Other than those two quick trips I have been enjoying my time out at Shady Oaks getting ready for the season. I will have two weeks here now before I head overseas and I will be found on the Shady Oaks “Little Nine” nearly every day. 🙂

I can’t leave a blog without my thoughts on my last event. The Bahamas was awfully kind to us this year, producing 4 days of nearly flawless weather with very low winds (unless you were in the final groups on Sunday!). It made for incredibly low scoring conditions, but the birdies were out there on every hole. I have to say my game has come out of this off season feeling better than past seasons. I drove the ball well, hit my irons well, and rolled the ball well on the greens even if they all didn’t go in. I lost the majority of my shots on the par 5’s with my pitching and wedges. It’s ok though, I have a great place to practice those things out at Shady. 🙂 I truly felt I played great there, but also have a very clear picture of where I was losing shots which makes it easy to make a plan going forward.
I have two weeks here at home, then I’m off on a three week stretch to Australia, Thailand, and Singapore. Hopefully the LPGA being back on tour gives you something to do if you’re battling a tough winter! Just remember that summer is getting closer every day. 🙂

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Callaway fitting in Carlsbad.  So thankful they help us get the best clubs in our bag every season!

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Kris and I as guest bartenders at the Pure Silk pro-am party. 🙂

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Auds and I happy to be back at work!!

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Things are serious in the pro am when the rally caps come on. Happy to report that it worked and we took home the hardware!

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One of the benefits of staying on the beach. 🙂

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First practice round of 2017. I’m lucky to call these people friends!!

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I became a true Texan when I attended the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo for Bulls Night Out.

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The 17th at Tradition. Yes, that landing area is as small as it looks.

Highs and Lows

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you all aren’t out there trampling people for tv’s today; but if you are, best of luck. I enjoyed a nice Thanksgiving at home in Clark for once and after a family wedding on Saturday I’ll be headed back to Ft. Worth. I’m looking forward to spending some time getting to know my new city.

It’s hard to believe another year has come to an end and I’m writing another year end blog. I had a solid week in Naples finishing T30 to finish out the year. I ended up 53 on the money list with a scoring average of 71.553 and 3 top tens. I haven’t sat down to really dig into my stats yet but when I do I’m sure I’ll find areas that improved and areas that will be of focus next year. In the meantime, It was fun to sit back and think about the best parts of this season, along with the times that taught me the most. I picked my 3 biggest moments of 2016 to share with you today.

1.) Singapore: After 2 seasons on tour I finally earned a spot to play in the HSBC in Singapore in February. This sticks out in my memory because the feeling of earning your way to play in those limited field events is always so satisfying. On top of that, it was one of the coolest places I had ever been, and somewhere I likely would never have gone if I didn’t play on the LPGA. I did not play well the first couple of rounds, but thankfully I should be back to play this year. 🙂

2.) Mid season slump: After a pretty solid first half of the year I hit a slump in late July thru early September. I made only 1 out of 4 cuts and finished in a tie for 44th in that event. It’s funny how this stretch of ugly golf is what sticks out in my mind the most. Throughout most of the year I feel I’m always right in it to play every weekend and have a good finish. I bounce back after missing a cut or having a bad round and I am always super happy and thankful for my job. However, during this time I realized that sometimes this “dream job” can be really REALLY hard. Although my game didn’t feel that bad I just wasn’t getting the ball in the hole and soon it felt as if everything was slipping away. I left France after missing the Evian cut by 1 shot and felt a sense of relief that the remaining events would be “no cut” events.

3.) Korea/Malaysia: I was happy to play in Korea this year, an event I had played only my rookie year. Malaysia was an event that I had originally wanted to take off because I always grinded out a bunch of 74’s and my caddie made more money than me. These courses both played very differently but my mindset and plan was the same: focus only on the process and let the score come. This is always my game plan but some weeks its just easier than others and these two weeks proved to be the epitome of what can happen when I really stick to that process. I finished T10 in Korea and two weeks later T7 in Malaysia. My best finish of the year on one of my least favorite golf courses. It’s funny what can happen when your attitude and mind is focused on what is possible and not on what has happened in the past.

I could probably write a list of 100 things I learned, enjoyed, and remember from this year but these definitely stick out in my mind the most. After 30 weeks on the road its time for a break from traveling and the golf course. Next year is a big year with at least 4 new LPGA events on the schedule and the Solheim Cup in Iowa. It will hopefully be a big year for me out there.

Happy Holidays! See you next year!

KK

 

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A little time at Disney before the final event in Naples.

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LPGA Girl’s Golf Junior Clinic in Naples.

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Matching as usual during the final event with Kris Tamulis.

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First day of off season spent on the boat in St. Pete thanks to these amazing friends! 🙂

Ricoh Women's British Open - Day One

From this years British Open at Woburn.

2016 Sime Darby LPGA - Day 2

From my best week of the year in Malaysia.  🙂