So you want to play better golf. We all do but despite the practice and hard work it doesn’t seem to work that easy. What gives? The problem most golfers have is they don’t know how to improve. This has nothing to do with the mechanics of the golf swing. It has to with having a plan for improvement and sticking with it. Here are 4 things you can do to setup a plan that will make improving possible:
Set specific, attainable goalsMost golfers say “I want to go from a 15 handicap to a 10 handicap”. This sounds like a clear goal but it’s actually very vague and doesn’t really help you understand what to improve. A specific, attainable goal would be that you currently average 7 tee shots a round in the trees and you want to reduce that to 4 a round. That gives you the clear goal to improve your accuracy with the driver. Your goal could be to go from missing 8 putts a round inside 6 feet to only missing 4. This tells you to spend time improving your short putts. I can tell from experience that anyone who wants to become “more consistent” or “take a few strokes” off their game, rarely improves. Improving a specific skill is the quickest way to improvement.
Practice with a purposeOnce you have your goals you need to setup a practice program to reach those goals. The golfer who grabs 3 balls and aimlessly hits putts around the practice green for 30 minutes does not improve his putting. He thinks it will improve, but he’s not fooling anyone. The golfer who wants to improve his short putting and sets up a practice station with a string or chalk line, goes through 1 or 2 specific drills, and focuses on aim and speed, improves his putting. Have a purpose to your practice session and your time spent will be time well spent.
Look at improvement incrementallyAs much as you want to go from hitting 8 tees shots in the trees to splitting the fairway each time, it’s not going happen in a week or 2. Finding consistent improvement with your golf game takes time and it’s not a linear process. You may a have a round where you hit it great and the next round you hit it terrible. This is normal and part of the improvement process. Look at improvement over the course of 3-4 weeks. Have the stats gone from 8 balls in the trees to 6. If so, this is an incremental improvement and a step in the right direction.
Stick to your method
How many times have you worked on your golf game, put in some good, efficient practice time, started to see improvement, and then after 1-2 bad rounds, and bailed on the whole thing to try something different? It happens to the best of us, but players who really improve don’t blow up the process after a few bad shots. Take a lesson, find a method and stick with it. You have a much better chance to find success by sticking with your method. Improving your golf game can often be an elusive challenge but it doesn’t have to be. Use these guidelines and you’ll have a much better chance for success.
Clay Hood is PGA Golf Professional and Co-Founder/Marketing Director for Precision Pro Golf. Clay can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org