Much of the soil here is rocky thanks to the failure of the ice dam containing ancient glacial lake Missoula in Montana. Pretty much has to be drill. Even aeration here with my Plugrs® is a serious hammer fest and there are properties I dread aerating with those units. I'm currently searching for a owner operator of a Ryan 28 reciprocating so I can compare it to my Plugrs in how it handles rocks etc.
Honestly I'm not expecting dramatic night and day results from drilling holes but I do expect it to make some difference.
It will be important to have untouched "rings" controls for fair comparison.
Neighbors place has it way worse due to poor cultural practices. You can see it on Google Earth.