Many Golfers go to the practice facility with good intentions… to improve their games. But many Golfers DO NOT have a specific plan in place prior to arriving. So… their practice often becomes disjointed, with no goal in mind… often leaving the facility in the same condition they arrived… with no improvement or worse… frustrated and feeling defeated.
When making changes, we need to remind ourselves that our game is strengthened through practice. We’re not born Golfers… we must learn how to become Golfers… and that happens from practice (translated: Homework).
Here are three types of practice routines to help you improve your game.
1. GAME IMPROVEMENT PRACTICE
This type of practice is used when working on a new position, technique or fix. It will most likely include drills, exercises, or specific practice routines that will assist with incorporating the new component into your game.
When I have students commit to a game improvement practice session… oftentimes I don’t have them aim at a particular target (unless the fix is specifically for target alignment). Trying to hit a target while also working on your swing/game oftentimes results in giving up on the game improvement technique in effort of hitting the target. In either case… usually neither is achieved.
In this type of practice it is imperative that you become objective oriented…rather than outcome oriented. Focus on drills, positions, and/or techniques that will make the necessary change and worry about outcome and hitting targets later.
2. MAINTENANCE PRACTICE
You’ve worked hard on making the necessary changes to your game… now it’s about repetitive practice to make those changes “stick.”
You might still be doing drills and implementing routines into your game from the Game Improvement Practice Sessions… but for the most part… you’re able to execute these drills and routines with some success. Now it’s about doing a bazillion swings, putts, chip shots… etc… so the drills and routines become part of your game without having to “think” about them. Feel the half-swing drill you’ve been working on to create lag, as part of your full swing. Implement the distance control drill into your putting game. It’s about making the improvements become habits.
And now… as part of this practice session… I’ll shoot at targets as well. A typical one-hour Maintenance session for me might be:
10-15 minutes reviewing/executing the drill I’ve been working on
35-45 minutes incorporating the drill into my swing/stroke/chip
10-15 minutes of target practice
3. WARM UP PRACTICE
It’s game time. You’ve made the necessary changes to your swing. You’ve practiced them relentlessly and now it’s time to take your new game to the golf course.
You arrive about 45 minutes to an hour ahead of your tee time and after gearing up… you head to the driving range to warm up. And that’s what you do… warm up.
Now is NOT the time to “fix” things. That would be “death” on the course! Besides… you’ve been working on this “stuff” during the other practice sessions. Your goal is to limber up the body and prepare for your epic round. It’s all about picking targets and beginning some type of wedge… hit some pitch shots. Maybe about 50 yards or so. About half dozen… lazy… tension free pitch shots. Then a few nine-irons. Seven-irons. Hybrids. About half dozen drivers. Then finish with more 50 yard shots.
Head to the practice green … chip a few balls to select targets and wrap up the warm up session with stroking a few putts from various lengths… starting with long putts and finishing with short ones. The idea being that the last few putts are makeable and a high success rate.
DON’T use the warm up practice session as a Game Improvement session or Maintenance session. It’s just about limbering up. And like Sam Snead said, “you have to dance with the one you bring.” In other words… you have to play with the game that you’ve brought. If you’re fading the ball… play the fade. If you’re hitting it shorter… play extra club. If the driver magic has left you… hit 3-wood off the tee.
Incorporate ALL THREE TYPES of practice sessions in your practice routines and enjoy the success they will bring!
Peace… Love… Golf!
Oh yeah… and if you’re looking for a game changing experience and you think I can help… check out the online video golf lessons I offer! Click here: IMPROVE NOW