NORTHBROOK — Louis Sauer never tires of receiving text messages from his appreciative golf students.
Every week, his phone buzzes with notes like "I just shot my career best," "I just won a tournament" or "we couldn't have done it without you."
"It goes beyond golf," said Sauer, of River North. "You're getting people to get to a level they never thought they would get to."
Sauer, 41, has been a golf instructor for the last 18 years, including running Louis Sauer Golf in suburban Northbrook since November. Of his 100 clients, about 20-25 are from Chicago, he said.
That includes Logan Square's Michael Grant, a two-time club champion at Conway Farms Golf Club; Whitney Young graduate and Lakeview resident Conor Dore, a two-time all-state golfer; and Lincoln Park's Matt Sondag, who's seen his score drop more than 10 strokes since using Sauer's tutelage over the past nine years.
"He's not just a golf instructor that's taking your money and happy that you show up; he wants and demands to see improvement," Sondag said.
Justin Breen says Sauer is also a standout golfer on the real course:
Added Dore, now a collegiate golfer at SIU-Edwardsville: "Before I went to Louis, my swing was extremely inconsistent and didn't really know how to get around a golf course, but I had talent. He has helped me get the most out of the talent that I have and improve everything along the way."
Sauer is a lifelong golf lover who's still a scratch player. More than anything, he enjoys passing on the skills and knowledge he's acquired to other players.
His instruction facility features TrackMan — a swing analysis system that compares golfers' shots side-by-side; Foresight — an on-course simulator that has courses like Cog Hill; putting analysis machines; and even a FocusBand, a mind performance trainer that teaches golfers to simply calm down.
Louis Sauer's golf strokes side-by-side on TrackMan. [Louis Sauer]
"He has created a unique environment that creates a better learning environment for all levels of golfers," Grant said.
Sauer offers individual or group lessons, and on days between lessons, his students also return to his facility to practice their strokes while he observes.
"They can't stray to the driving range that way," Sauer said. "It gives me a chance to monitor their progression and practice. The range gives you no feedback."
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