Thursday, December 04, 2014

Golf Vacation Practice: Range Drills

Some people define a golf vacation as a simple recreation. Something that is meant to be fun and not warrant seriousness. But there are other golf enthusiasts who are simply filled with passion for their chosen sport enough to make a few sacrifices. They cherish victories and take every defeat as a painful reminder to excel further. With proficiency aptly defined by handicaps (the number of strikes it takes to finish a hole), a dedicated golfer will do his or her best to reduce the frequency of those swings... If you'd like a refresher on the handicap concept, look back to our "Basics of Handicap" post to have a better understanding for these tips.  

One of the first things to improve when reducing handicaps is the spatial skill. Practicing this skill requires dogged repetition. If you are interested in skillfully launching your ball at an approximate distance your eyes have determined, you need to keep doing the range drills.

Why the Golf Range?
A golf range is pretty similar to a shooting range. You stand at an aisle and send forth a ball's flight to the prescribed distance (your target). Unlike an actual leisure game, you don't move towards the landing site of the ball. The reason for the stationary position is that it allows you to focus on individual aspects of your game – like distance, accuracy, and flight of the ball.

Muscle Memory
This is the first hurdle to being an adept player. It takes hundreds of club swinging for your body to be familiarized. A dozen trials would not yield a desirable result simply because the mind and the body is not yet fully synchronized. Muscle memory works the same in golf as it does with other sports. You often need at least a month of repetition to have smooth and fluid reflexes, making the swing of a golf club second nature.

Accuracy
As your body gets accustomed to launching golf balls with ease, the next concern is accuracy. It takes a certain tweak in the swinging curve to redirect the flight of the ball to an actual target. Muscle memory is crucial in order to be able to pull off split-second modifications in your swing. Practicing accuracy is a matter of recurring calculations of distance. It is one thing to let yourself drift in the “second nature” of club swinging, it's another thing to curb that impulse and take full control of it.


Repetitive drills can be tedious and time consuming, but positive results will eventually unfold in the latter part of the process. If you are truly committed to improving your game, always visit the range. It will never be a waste of time even if you delegate fractional hours of it into your golf vacation.

Monday, December 01, 2014

Organize Your Golf Bag Now to Focus on Your Game Later

"Having your golf bag organized will help you greatly as you improve your skills. Knowing where each club is within the bag, you will not lose focus on the shot you have planned, while you search for the proper club."

--John Hughes, PGA.com

There is no written rule on how to correctly arrange your clubs in your bag during a golf trip. But having them organized in a way that makes sense to you, can do a lot to help a golfer. Perhaps it's the first step to improving your game. What you bring and how they are brought is also a matter of pride and can increase self-confidence.

So, here's a guide you on how to organize your golf bag and hit the course like a pro:

Check the sections
A golf bag consists of different sections and compartments. Knowing how to utilize each of these sections and what club to put in each will make it easier to focus on the actual golf play.

Know the two kinds of golf bags
2 basic types: (1) the one you carry while walking and (2) the one kept on the golf cart when riding. A cart bag has a front section, where the hand-carry is, and a back. Despite the difference, the set-up of your clubs remains the same.

Follow the club arrangement
To correctly place your clubs inside your bag, follow these steps:

  1. In the front compartment, all wood, putter and hybrid clubs (if you have each of them) should be placed here.
  2. In the second row, all your long and mid range irons. This would typically include 3 to 7-irons. You can also put the 3-iron on the compartment nearest to your body while the rest remains in order.
  3. The 8 and 9 irons, the pitching wedge, as well as the sand wedge should be placed on the final compartment (or the compartment near to your body). Noticeably, the longer clubs located toward the back, and the shorter ones toward the front compartment.

Towel placement
A towel may be your most important accessory to have when playing. The proper way to place your towel is to have it clipped at the front of your golf bag so it hangs down while on the move. This way, it's accessible when you clean your golf balls and clubs. Most golf towels have come with hole lined with metal for easy clipping.

Tees and Golf ball placement
Tees and golf balls are highly important and frequently used items on your game. Use the front side pockets to keep them. If you have other side pockets you may also put your spare balls and gloves, ball markers, divot repair tools, and other less frequently used items.


Above all, stay organized. Every time you pull out a club, you should also know where to place it when it's done being used. Make this a habit because later on, you won't have to think about where to place tool, instead, you can focus enjoying the game during your golf trip.