Monday, January 25, 2016

Take a Golf Trip and become a better golfer

Whether it's a once in a lifetime trip, or you go to the same destination annually, sometimes it's those special courses that bring out the best in you.

According to a well-known psychologist named Anders Ericsson, becoming a better golfer requires practicing beyond your comfort zone. That includes changing it up from the same 18 holes week after week. And proper technique goes beyond mindlessly pounding balls in an effort to build muscle memory – because according to Ericsson, muscles do not have the memory, only the brain does.  He further stated that improving your golf game has to be deliberate; it has to be done with purpose and must include a little pain until a golfer finally learns to bend the ball at his will.

For those of you who are seriously aiming to be a better player, here are six drills to help in that process. If you try them at your local golf club before heading off on your trip, or on the trip itself, they will be sure to further your game. They are guaranteed to push you out of your comfort zone and lower your handicap.

Rehearse your full swing.  Take note that mindlessly swinging will hardly make you a better golfer, so make it your goal to do a deliberate practice swing of the particular technique you would like to learn and utilize. For instance, if you are focusing on the backswing, you don't have to jump up to the tee right away.

Take dead aim as a game. Maximize your the of practice tees by using them to your advantage. Kick off by playing an entire nine using a variety of clubs and scoring yourself accordingly. Generally, the first hole calls for driver, then 6-iron, and eventually wedge. Use specific clubs in succession and so that you are able to make use of your equipment in random order.

Improve your chipping distance. Some golfers find chipping a challenge. If this doesn’t happen to be your strength, don’t fret because there are ways to improve on this aspect. Once you're out on the practice green, take five balls and drive chips to your target hole until you eventually knock all five balls to within a club-length of the cup. Repeat this drill until you finally manage to knock them all inside.

Target that straight five-foot putt on the practice green.  When you are on a golf trip, make it your goal to do at least 50 straight five-foot putts. It will be a bit challenging but it will greatly improve your short stroke.

Work on your half wedges. Acknowledge that you can’t always hit wedges at full distances and dedicate some time to improve on this. Do not be discouraged when you hit awkward distances like 35, 50 and 75 yards, instead keep hitting until you land a ball within an acceptable distance.

Blast sand shots! Be extra careful not to mindlessly swing sand shots from the practice bunker. Instead, use this to further improve your skill. Decide on a challenging radius around a hole and practice blasting five balls within your chosen radius. Eventually shrink your radius, send shots from a new distance, and start over again.

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