Cindy Miller, a wonderful teacher and player of the game, made space in her schedule for a shake at some questions we compiled. Cindy has been featured on The Big Break, the Golf Channel’s reality show, and the LPGA and the Legends tours. We are grateful to her for sharing a bit of her golfing life with us.1. You “burst” onto the television golfing scene in The Big Break III: Ladies Only! (filmed in 2004, shown in 2005.) How’d you get that far in your golfing life?
The first one, Big Break III; Ladies Only (2005) continues to be the series with the highest ratings of any Big Break. The second one, Big Break Reunion aired in 2007.
I applied to be on the show via an email I received. Once I sent the application in, I basically forgot about it until two months later, when I received a call from the Golf Channel asking me if I would like to audition for the show. I flew to Orlando where there were approximately 100 other women (all MUCH younger than me) who were there to audition as well). I will finish this when I know what you are looking for.
2. You went pretty far (semi-finals, as I recall) in The Big Break III. What element(s) of your game took you that deep into the competition?
I was fortunate to survive many of the elimination challenges on the Big Break III; Ladies Only. My short game definitely saved me more than once.
3. They say that first-time visiters to Augusta National are blown away by the changes in topography, a hilliness that television cannot portray. What is one aspect of The Big Break that viewers cannot see, that makes a big difference?
One aspect of the Big Break that viewers are not able to witness is the waiting, anticipation and stress that you go through while being taped. On our series, we had to get up at 5:00 AM, have breakfast, go to the course, and then sit and wait in a room. We had no idea what we were doing that day, what shots we would need to perform, how long they would be, or what contests. EVERYTHING was a secret. When you were given permission to hit golf balls, they would say, “Practice shots between 50- 150 yards.” The hardest part for me was not knowing what I was going to be asked to perform, and not knowing what to prepare for.
4. Tell us what the LPGA Legends Tour is and how you’re doing on it.
The LPGA Legends Tour is the official senior tour of the LPGA. We have over 100 members, including 10 World Golf and LPGA Hall of Fame members. Legends Tour players have compiled over 650 LPGA Tour victories, including 65 major championships. We are in our 12th season and have played for over $9,000,000 in prize money. Over $11,000,000 has been awarded to charity through Legends Tour events. I currently sit number 28 on the Legends Tour Career Money List. (www.thelegendstour.com) I am trying to bring an event to Buffalo. If anyone out here would like to help me find some sponsors, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
5. What are the ultimate goals of the Legends Tour?
The ultimate goal of the Legends Tour is to have between 10-15 events per year. We currently have nine.
6. You spend a portion of your days teaching golf to students. What are your keys to being a successful teacher?
I believe a few things are very important to be a good teacher of the game. You first need to be a good student, a good player, and a lifelong learner. The student is always more important than the teacher.
7. Statistics vary, so I won’t list any on this topic, but what are the keys to turning new golfers into older golfers (keeping them in the game)?
How do you help students stay in the game? You help them improve and have fun. This is a game.
8. I’m your typical macho guy, delusional in that I think I can hit it 300 yards and have wedge into every green. What’s one swing thought or tactic that I REALLY can use/need to learn?
The one swing tactic that always works. He and/or she who misses it best, without getting ticked, always wins. The one swing thought that is universal, TEMPO. (be smooth)
9. What questions has no one ever asked, that you would love to answer? Ask the question and answer it, please.
The one question that no one has ever asked me, that I would love to answer, “Why do you continue to play this game and try to compete at the highest level when you are 56 years old?” My answer, “Because the game of golf has no limits. You can always improve, and never master it. Your clubs have no idea how old you are, and the ball doesn’t know what is in front of it. It is a game of personal accountability and consequence that no other game in the world can compare. I love the opportunity of getting better each time I play, even though I may not score better. If I learn a new lesson about me, my game, and life, I have won.”