Golf seems like a very complicated sport. From which golf club to use to how to practice, and when to swing away versus setup with a lay-up shot golf courses. Playing golf entails numerous rules, specific terminology, and flawless technique. Golf lessons always seem like a good idea, but only 15% of golfers actually take them. So how come so many people play golf so well? They practice. Just like with any other sport, practice is key to improving your game and mastering the techniques. Golf is a game that takes a toll on the players mentally, but with the right discipline in place, dedication, and practice, you’ll be able to call yourself a pro golf player in no time. Here are some practice tips to help you become a better golfer.
1. Play with the proper clubs
You can carry up to 14 clubs in your bag, but do you really need all of them? If you’re a beginner, you should probably stick with only a few of them. You can always count on your driver, putter, and sand wedge, but make sure you also have a 6-iron, an 8-iron, a pitching wedge, and a fairway wood standing by. These clubs allow for a higher level of control and make your life easier during the first golfing sessions. According to Golf WRX, leave the weaker loft clubs to experienced golfers and opt for clubs with stronger loft. A stronger loft makes it easier to get the golf ball in the air, reduces sidespin, and allows for a straighter fly. The minimum loft for a driver should be 10 degrees.
2. Alternate between lighter and heavier clubs
They all seem the same at first, but what a difference a club can make! Beginners will benefit the most when training with a lighter club. A lighter club allows them to train speed in their golf swing and increase distance. It also helps them swing the club faster and enjoy that “swoosh” sound a swing makes to announce a great shot. The heavier club puts your muscles to work and, in time, allows you to develop more strength. More strength equals more speed. The average amateur golfer has a clubhead speed of 80-90 mph while tour pros reach 110-115 mph and long drive competitors take pride in their 140s. Now, you need to find a way to fill in the gap between the amateur average and pros, and the only way you can do that is by practicing. Alternate between lighter and heavier clubs to hit different types of muscles and increase strength!
3. Widen your stance
A big part of golf practice revolves around the correct posture. Your stance plays a vital part in a successful swing, so pay attention to how you position yourself before hitting the ball. Now, your stance depends on the type of club you’re using and your goals. If you’re using a driver – the longest club you have, you should expect a larger swing arc and more speed. This requires a solid base to ensure the proper level of balance when you swing the club. Golf Monthly states the easiest way you can achieve this is to hold the top of the driver next to your left shoulder. Then just allow it to hang and it should be in line with the inside of your left foot. Repeat the process with your right shoulder and your right foot to get your ideal stance width. This facilitates a strong base and a higher level of control.
4. Insist on the short shots
We know it may sound boring to practice only with your wedges and putter, but practicing your short shots is an excellent golf practice session. Half of your strokes come within 50 yards of the green, so it makes sense to spend at least half of your practice perfecting your short approach shots, sand shots, pitch shots, and, in general, any shot meant to have the ball ascend and descend sharply. The best part is that you don’t have to go to the driving range to practice. You can simply get some buckets and put them at various distances in your backyard. Your goal? To send the ball into the bucket. Want to practice your shots on the putting green? You don’t really need practice greens. You can simply test your hand on the carpet and focus on sending your ball into furniture legs. The number one rule when playing short shots? Keep your ball on the ground around the greens. Use your highest-lofted club and make sure that the ball spends as little time as possible in the air.
5. Always check your alignment
A good body alignment when you hit the ball is essential for the success of your shot. However, the correct alignment as per the rules of golf might feel a bit unnatural. Basically, when you hit the golf ball, your head and body should face in the opposite direction of your target. However, there’s nothing that practice can’t solve. Golf.com recommends relying on your golf alignment sticks to improve your alignment or, if you don’t own some, just pick two of your clubs. Ensure that one club is above your feet and the other above the ball. Use the sticks to make sure your arms, feet, and eyes are parallel to the left of your target. Keep checking your alignment and integrate it into your pre-shot routine. Leave the alignment sticks at home when you’re playing on the course though! Want another tip? Raise your left heel for more shoulder turn in the backswing.
6. Monitor your progress
A good body alignment when you hit the ball is essential for the success of your shot. However, the correct alignment as per the rules of golf might feel a bit unnatural. Basically, when you hit the golf ball, your head and body should face in the opposite direction of your target. HThe best players in the world rely on launch monitors to monitor their spin rates, launch angles, smash factor, and clubhead speed. It is a very useful tool especially if you want to understand your swing dynamics and enjoy effective shots. You won’t need it for every shot but it will certainly provide guidance for your practice. You should also take a look at The Stacker, a golf accessory meant to help you add discipline and have a more regimented practice. The perfect alternative for golfers who don’t want to carry a bucket of balls around and an elegant investment for a golf experience on a driving range, The Stacker allows you to monitor the number of used balls without having to count them. Moreover, due to its pyramid shape, any avid golfer can keep an eye on their range balls and allocate a number of balls to every type of club he wants to use during their practice.