3 Ways To Maximize Your Time On The Golf Course
A great golf player once said that: “Listen, we are sitting here and talking about practice, not the game, not the game, not the game, but we are talking about PRACTICE.” So what does that mean and how is there anything wrong with golf practice?
As a keen writer and a professional golf player, I noticed that most of people often write great articles about how to read the putt, how to change the grip, or how to fix the slice, but rarely do they talk about how to practice correctly. As I gave lessons over the past few years, I saw hundreds of my students hitting a golf ball without a good plan, then raking over ball after ball mindlessly to strike it in another terrible direction. This could not be farther from how you need to practice.
All of my students understand that I am a supporter for daily practice, and performing it properly involves 3 forms of different practice, including Competition or Score Based Practice, Skill Building, and Block Practice.
1. Block Practice
Block practice is basically the most common form of practice and the only form that a lot of golf players tend to do. In general, it is the act of doing certain exercises and repeating them over and over again till you get used to the movement of the feel. What I often want to see from this form of practice is several types of feedback so that the golf player would recognize whether he is doing the exercise correctly on every repetition or swing.
Let’s see what is a good block practice? For example, if you are practicing on your full swing and particularly on a certain part or piece, applying an alignment rod as the obstacle will help the golf player feel the necessary exaggerations and allow him to have an immediate feedback on if the exercise is being correctly completed. One of my favorite exercises is to put an alignment rod approximately 15 to 19 feet on the aiming line to practice starting the golf ball right or left of the expected target.
2. Skill Building
Skill building is a much-ignored part of most golf players’ practice sessions. It is basically the exercise of taking what you are diligently working on and using it to an environment similar to the golf course. For instance, if you are practicing your pitch and chipping shot mechanics during a block practice session, then you would come to the area of practice and work on up-and-downs around the green. During this period, the most important thing is never striking golf ball from the same spot more than one time. I always emphasize to all of my students that it is very important to always play down the golf ball after dropping it during this aspect of the practice routine and also repeat the entire routine as though you were on a real course. Generally, the key here is ensuring that you are using the concepts from the block practice on your skill building practice. Even when the results aren’t as expected, you will be used to doing your new swing thought and movement under the condition of a golf course.
3.Competition or Score-based Practice
The final and also my favorite method of practice is score-based competition. It is basically where you apply the skill building practice as well as block practice to a competition or a game where there would be a score and the possibility for failure, nervousness, or stress to strengthen your new skills while playing under the pressure of a tournament-like environment. The most important element in this type of practice is that there should be a complication for not achieving your expected goals. Staying with a short game, you could practice about 20 up-and-downs around the golf green and require a certain number of successful up-and-downs. Have a good benchmark and increasingly make it more challenging when you become better. If you are making a putting shot, look for a partner and then play a 9-hole game to add more pressure. And if you are working on the golf course, try to strike a certain amount of consecutive greens or fairways in regulations.
Adding pressure will basically allow you to feel not comfortable so that whenever you play in a real competitive setting or tournament, you could feel as comfortable as possible. If you follow our practicing guidelines above and you will be able to get the best scores on your golf game.