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Golf - Home on the Range

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There are several ways to improve your golf game this season.

The first thing that you can do is to buy some new clubs. For most golfers this will help improve not only their performance, but their confidence as well. A word of caution when it comes to buying new clubs, always try before you buy! Most courses have demo clubs that can be taken to the range or even on course for a trial round. This is the best way to ensure that the clubs match your swing.

The second way to lower your scores is to ensure that you warm up properly before you play. To do this you are going to need to work on your time management skills. Show up at the course at least an hour before your tee off time. This will give you time to check in, stretch and go through a complete pregame warm up. You can also get a bite to eat or purchase some on course snacks and drinks for your upcoming round.

A pregame warm up should include chipping and pitching as well as gradual full swing shots at the range with both your irons and your woods. Finally, go to the practice green to check the speed of the greens. Remember that the speed of most practice greens is slightly different than the speed of the greens on course. Practice greens usually get more traffic and as a result are usually slower than the greens on course.

The most effective way to improve your game this year is to spend more time at the practice range. At the range you have the opportunity to hit shots over again. If you make some bad swings, then simply evaluate what caused the bad shot and make a correction. The only place that you should ever “experiment” with your swing is at the practice range.

The practice range is my office. It is where I make adjustments and focus on the mechanical aspects of my swing. I also work on establishing and sometimes refining my pre swing routine for each type of shot. The range is where you not only can work on the weaker aspects of your game but also learn your distances. Take advantage of the yardage markers on the range, so that you can learn what your distances are for all of your clubs under normal conditions.

Practice drills are a great way to develop consistent and permanent swing moves. They will help you to groove your swing so that less time is spent thinking during your next round of golf. Swing drills will help you to develop your muscle memory and make your swing more natural and shot making more consistent.

The next time you are at the range for a full work out, try playing a 9 hole round of golf. Pretend that you are on the first tee of the course that you are planning to play your next round. Start with your driver and after you hit one drive imagine yourself on the first fairway. Next calculate your approximate distance to the flag, based on your previous drive and hit your second shot. You can select a target on the range as though it was the green on the golf course. If your second shot lands close to the pin or on the green, then change clubs and prepare to play the second hole. If it is not close, then select a wedge and make a short pitch shot, the approximate length that you would have for your third shot on the golf course.

Continue to play each hole until you have played the entire front nine. The only shot that you will not be able to hit at the range is your putts. You can simply finish you full practice session with some “quality time” on the practice green.

This season, if you want to shoot lower scores than simply put in the time. You will only get from your golf game, what you put into it!


Next Week: Achieving Your Personal Best!
Previous Week: Pace of Play Tips

Cameron Burechails
Head / Teaching Professional
The Georgian Bay Golf Academy