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  In the rough > Tip of the day

 

Tip of the Day

Plan Your Practices to Keep Improving

In order to improve, you need to practice smarter.

Let me explain this from a business point of view. To run a company, you must be focused on what you want to accomplish if you expect to be successful. You need to set goals, meet deadlines, review progress reports and re-tool areas that need changing. If you didn't, you would be out of business pretty fast.

Your practice sessions need to have the same focus. It is amazing to hear how many golfers practice with very few objectives in mind except, perhaps, to hit a few balls at the targets on the range. To me, this is like unlocking the front door to your business and expecting people to flock in all on their own. It's just not going to happen without some effort on your part. The same goes for our game improvement.

First, let me challenge you to track the progress of your game using a "Diary." Log all your shots. Where you hit them, how far, result, etc. By reviewing your shots, you can quickly see areas that we will want to concentrate on, such as chipping or sand shots, to lower your score quickly.

The first step is to start counting your good shots and chart them in your diary. For example, lets say you are willing to practice two days a week and hit 100 balls per practice session. The question you then will need to ask is what clubs should be used? Do you use all of them?

Many Pro's will tell you that the most important club in the bag is the wedge. Remember, as you practice and improve, you will be changing your golf swing (slightly), and I would imagine you would like to achieve your goals as quickly as possible. If you learn the swing with one club, such as a wedge or a 9-iron, your feedback will be more accurate, and your short game (which has a HUGE impact on your score) will improve much more quickly.

As you hit your 100 balls per session, write down how many good shots you hit. It's also important to give yourself attainable goals while you practice. In the beginning, maybe your goal is only for 15 percent of your shots to be good. Start low, so you can have some success, and then raise the bar a little each practice session thereafter.

Along with charting your progress while you practice, keep track of how you do on the golf course. How many fairways did you hit, how many greens did you reach in regulation and how many putts per round did you take. It won't be long before you see where you need to spend your time to reach your goals. As you concentrate on those areas, you will see your golf game improve to the level you desire


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