About Mike Carbray

Mike Carbray is currently the Director of Instruction at Butterfield Country Club in Oak Brook Illinois. A 27-hole facility built in 1920, Butterfield is one of the premier private clubs in the Chicagoland area. Mike also is the owner of Journey 2 Better Golf located in Westmont, Illinois. “J2B” is an indoor year-round facility dedicated to total game and body improvement though top-level instruction and the latest in high tech teaching devices. Mike is the 2018 Illinois PGA Teacher of the Year, raked #7 Best instructor in Illinois by Golf Digest Magazine, Top 50 Growth of the Game Instructors, US KIDS Golf Top 50 Master Instructor and was named the 2012 Illinois PGA Junior Golf Leader.

Mike has had great success with all golfers from complete beginner to PGA Tour professionals. He works and can communicate with golfers of all ages, but he really enjoys and has a passion for working with junior golfers of all levels. If it is introducing them to the game and helping them both improve and fall in love with golf or taking kids into college scholarship players, Mike has had numerous success stories.

Born and raised in Hamden, Connecticut, Mike’s love for the game of golf started in the 4th grade when his grandfather leased a public golf course from the town. Hockey in the winter and golf in the summer was how Mike spent his adolescence. In college, Mike was a member of the Elon University Golf Team.

After college Mike was lucky enough to start his teaching career at the famed Chicago Golf Club. He then spent the next 6 years working under Eden Foster, Golf Magazine, Top 100 teacher at The Maidstone Club in East Hampton, NY and Calusa Pines Golf Club in Naples, Fl. It was during these years where Mr. Carbray sought out and learned from many of the top instructors in the country as well as many PGA Tour professionals. Watching these people instruct and by reading their literature, Mike was able to combine thoughts and develop his own philosophy on the golf swing and the best ways to communicate it to his students. Prior to coming to Butterfield, Mike spent two years as the Head Professional at Kinloch Golf Club in Richmond, Virginia.

Mike enjoys competing and working on his own golf game. He has two professional wins in his career, 2009 Shelter Harbor Invitational and 2008 Calusa Pines Invitational. His lowest score in competition is 65. Mike currently lives in Glen Ellyn, IL. with his wife Meagen, sons Keegan, age 8, and Beckham, age 3, and dog Palmer.

My Swing Philosophy:

Proper impact while maximizing club speed are the keys to hitting long and solid golf shots. There are factors and positions in your swing that are needed to achieve a proper impact. I explain those factors to the golfer, why they are important and how and when they need to occur during the swing. I believe there is no one correct way to swing the club, there are an infinite number of ways to swing to get the desired impact. I do believe in using what you already have physically and highlighting the strengths of your golf swing and building off those strengths. I put my students through a hexagonal approach to improving their game. This allows me to asses a total picture of their body, swing and equipment. From this assessment, I can optimize performance and improve all areas of your golf game.

The Golf Hexagon is:

  1. Basic Instruction: Analysis of physical strength and flexibility applied to grip, stance, posture, alignment, swing fundamentals to achieve proper impact conditions, ball flight and distance and maximizing club speed.
  2. Short Game and Putting: The key to lower scores is the ability to master shots inside 50 yards and on the putting green. Eliminating 3 putts and making all puts inside 3 feet are essential. Proper lag putting techniques and distance control are a necessity to lower scores.
  3. Shot Making Skills: Shots inside 100 yards, recovery shots, specialty shots, trajectory control and ball curvature.
  4. Course Management: Thought processes on different shots and holes. Game plan for a round, risk / reward ratios and on course nutrition. Analysis of strengths and weaknesses and using them in a round.
  5. Mental and Physical: Seeing what the player can do physically by using a golf specific physical assessment and prescribing relevant stretches and exercises that allow the player to make a more efficient swing. Dealing with stress on the course and positive self-talk through the round.
  6. Equipment: Proper set make up; making sure clubs are properly fit to players’ swing. This includes the correct weight, flex and loft to optimize launch conditions, ball speed and distance. Having the correct lie angle, loft and head improve direction and off center hits. Also having the correct set make up for the course you play regularly is an important factor to optimizing your scores.