It blows my mind to watch amateurs practice! Ill walk up and down the range and watch the balls fly left and right no routine or purpose. Those same players are asking me why they are not improving at the rate they would like. Jordon Speith uses alignment aids but the 15 handicap doesn’t. Explain that to me please?? After my freshman year getting my feet wet in the TSSAA State Championships I played Old Fort on the range 3 to 4 times per week. Intense focus on tee shots that made me uncomfortable. By my junior year it felt like my home course. Challenge yourself to follow the steps below on the range to push yourself to improve your ball striking and focus during practice. I’ve said it numerous times and ill say it again. Practice has to have a feel of real and there has to be task completed before you leave that phase. Lets turn it up and prepare to win!
- Focus Like its 18 at Augusta– Id rather see a player be focused on 1 ball per club full routine and making sure they are under control with each shot than see 5000 balls fly per min. Find your target see the shot fly during your pre shot and get it done. After the shot has fallen stop and evaluate and repeat. Put the pressure on to hit the shots you see.
- Shot Shaping/Lie Management- Every Shot on the course isn’t going to be a flat lie with no wind. Practice hitting draws cuts high low uphill downhill good lies bad lies. Its important to always put yourself in real situations. Can you flight it high and low? Your going to need all of these shots on the course so why not develop them in practice?
- Swing Bottom Management- Great players hit the ground consistently where they choose. Spray a line on the ground and get an idea of where you are hitting the ground with your irons. Just as there is an amateur and pro side putting the same can be said for ball striking. Pros hit the ground for the most part on the target side of the ball. How many times in a row can you control your swing bottom? Its a big deal..
- Play golf on the range- During my freshman year I was so nervous at my state tournament because I had not been putting the same pressure on myself in practice. When we got in the car to leave I told myself id never be unprepared again. 2 to 3 times per day id play the course on the range. The first hole is a 395 yard par 4 with water down the right side decent starting hole. The exact club was in play on the range id visualize hitting a cut off the 150 with a 4 iron or hybrid. Depending on how well I struck the shot would determine the club I used for the approach shot. If the approach shot was solid id visualize making the putt if not id hit a pitch to a target. Get where im going with this? I was ready for that place year 3 and gathered ALL State honors.
Practice has to feel real if you want to grow. You have to fail to win and that has to drive you. I’ve failed far more than I’ve ever won. My freshman year getting in the car I was down because of my play and I never wanted to be unprepared again. Sound familiar? – Sasha