Missouri Golf Post

Hello! I’m Martin Krulatz, PGA Member and Head Golf Professional at Old Kinderhook at Lake of the Ozarks. My world of golf includes managing a facility, teaching the game privately to new and seasoned players alike when in need of help, hosting golf tournaments, teaching golf camps, and playing competitively in locally and regionally in U.S. Open qualifying and Web.com qualifying.

TMGP: What/who got you started into the game of golf?

Martin: Like most people, my father introduced me to the game of golf. At the age of 3 I was trying to hit my father’s left-handed golf clubs in a right-handed manner. By the age of 5 I had my very own set of golf clubs custom built just for me!

TMGP: Can you describe your best moment or day on the golf course?

Martin: The best day on the golf course is when in competition you are going along your day and noticing that every shot you are trying to pull off is doing exactly what you want. You’re finding the correct side of the fairway off the tee, making great club selections on 2nd shots, hitting the ball close to the hole and scoring. These days are the best because it usually means you’ve bested your competition!

TMGP: Do you teach lessons? Describe what you do to fix things when needed. Go to a teacher? Work things out yourself?

Martin: I instruct a fair number of golfers, from high school students, young juniors aspiring to competitively play in just a few years, beginners just entering the game, seasoned veterans, highly skilled golfers, both men and women alike.

The primary cause of poor results when trying hitting the golf ball is a player’s fundamentals being incorrect. If you’re trying to build anything that will last, you need to start with a good foundation. The bulk of my students either need a refresher on what those fundamentals are or need an introduction as to what the fundamentals entail.

If you find yourself in need of instruction please seek assistance from a PGA golf professional. We are the experts in the game of golf and would be happy to provide help you need to enjoy the game!

TMGP: Do you have a regular “game” with friends?

Martin: Tuesday’s at 2pm during the golf season Old Kinderhook has a Skin’s Game that is open to everyone! The total of $48 covers your golf fee and prize fund for a great afternoon of golf that has a little something riding on it.

TMGP: What’s your best score? Number and what was it to par?

Martin: My best score was a round of 69 on my home track, which is 2 under par. Sadly, I was putting on the 18th hole for an eagle 3 and walked off with just a par!

TMGP: What’s the most beautiful/scenic course you’ve ever played?

Martin: Old Kinderhook of course! A close 2nd was an ocean-side golf course I played while on my honeymoon in the Dominican Republic.

TMGP: Have you ever met or played with a current or former PGA Tour player?

Martin: I grew up playing a golf course in Wisconsin that wasn’t far from the state line with Illinois, near the town of Antioch. A gentleman by the name of Fred Hawkins played there during the summer while escaping the heat of his full-time residence in Florida. I had pleasure of playing 9 holes with this individual. One might wonder, “who’s Fred Hawkins?” Fred Hawkins was nearly part of a rather exclusive membership. He finished 2nd in the 1958 Masters, one stroke behind a rather famous individual who you may know, Arnold Palmer! This is also the same year Ken Venturi argued Palmer may have taken relief where he otherwise was not deemed to have been justified to do so. Nevertheless, the rest is history. Even at his elder age when I was able to have conversation with him he still marveled at his 1st car ride down Magnolia Lane.

TMGP: What’s the best golf related advice/tip that you’ve ever been given?

Martin: “Hit the little ball before you hit the big ball!”

TMGP: What course in Missouri would you most love to play on and why?

Martin: My top choice would have to be St. Louis Country Club due to the rich history of the game at the facility. It has hosted the men’s U.S Amateur, women’s U.S. Amateur, the U.S. Open and this year it will host the Curtis Cup. With that much history, I’d love to see where a lot of greats have gathered to compete and do the same myself.

TMGP: Do you feel that your perspective on the game has changed or evolved since you first started playing?

Martin: No, no I don’t. I was raised up on the principles that golf would make me a better person through the lesson of etiquette and learning to follow rules. Though some have previously tried to impose sanctions upon certain members of society as to who golf is for, the game is blind as to whom it favors and to whom it imposes its ever-burdensome troubles upon in the course of a round. Golf always has, is and always will be for everyone! The idea needs to be offered to open people’s eyes to this reality. Golf will always give back more than what one tries to take from it too, which humbles a person beyond comprehension.

TMGP: Do you have any specific golf products that you rely on/enjoy using?

Martin: I most enjoy my Titliest ProV1x golf balls that have my name on the side, as well as my Scotty Cameron putter which was made for use on a professional tour!

TMGP: What’s the coolest or dumbest golf gadget you ever bought?

Martin: It has to be the laser yardage finder. It’s amazing how easy that device makes it to get a number!

TMGP: Can you share an amusing or little known fact or golf story that your golf buddies would be surprised to find out?

Martin: In qualifying for my high school golf team my sophomore year I took a 13 on a par-5 due to hitting 4 tee shots out-of-bounds on the 4th hole.

TMGP: When Missouri is covered in snow do you fly off to play on warmer courses? If so, where do you go?

Martin: Sadly, I don’t get away. If I did however, I would head for Florida which seems to offer more than the deserts of Arizona provide.

TMGP: Have you changed out your long irons to hybrids? What’s the longest iron in your golf bag?

Martin: I have gone from a standard 4-iron to a club described more as a utility 4-iron which allows for me to hit the ball up into the air easier, yet still provides the shape of an iron at address. The longest standard iron I care is the 5-iron.

TMGP: What’s your favorite rescue club?

Martin: I only have one, my Titleist 712U 4-iron!

TMGP: Have you ever taken putting lessons?

Martin: Every time I hit my ball inside my playing competitor’s, I take the opportunity to observe the path the ball takes, which is all the help I need when it comes to putting.

TMGP: What’s the course that you play on most often? What advice would you pass onto someone who is playing there for their first time?

Martin: Old Kinderhook of course! Best advice is to aim where the fairway is the widest. It may not mean you have to hit driver off every tee box, but it does provide you the best opportunity at hitting the fairway every time and setting yourself up for a great chance at hitting the 2nd shot onto the green.

TMGP: What would you say are the top 3 golf courses in Missouri?

Martin: As far as current public facility courses, Old Kinderhook, Dalhouise and the Branson Creek course now being called Buffalo Ridge are all facilities which offer the public a chance to play courses in a condition which would otherwise be indicative of, and only accessible at, a private country club setting.

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The Missouri Golf Post is a monthly digital magazine that “celebrates the people who play the game.” Each monthly issue contains several “feature” stories on golfers, golf courses, and/or major tournaments of interest statewide. Each issue contains a number of regular departments on topics such as Tournament Summaries, Fitness, “The Superintendent’s Corner,” Instruction, and Rules.

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