How To Track Your Golf Scores And Progress 1

Practice does not make perfect!

Perfect practice does make perfect!

Hitting a huge basket of golf balls at the driving range does not practically make you a better golfer if you do not have a plan or idea of what you want to achieve during the practice session. The best practice sessions are the ones where you actually hit fewer balls but have better quality. Split your practice session into four sessions as listed below. You will find your time spent at the driving range or on the practice ground will be much more valuable. You will learn more and improve at a much faster rate.

Warm up - This is a key part to any practice session or round of golf. Make sure you have warmed up. Here is a quick and easy pre-round warm-up routine to help you avoid those big numbers on the scorecard.

Hip swings: Simply swing your knee back and forth for 30 seconds per leg. This movement will help loosen up your muscles and joints and elevate your heart rate. These muscles are typically tight especially if you sit all day.

Squats: Squat up and down for 60 seconds. This is an excellent overall exercise to build strength, but it will also get your heart rate up to warm up muscles and make them more elastic so they will move easier.

Cross-crawl: Hold the club parallel to the ground and raise your knee to the opposite elbow for 60 seconds. The simple motion of crossing your elbow to the opposite knee activates the core muscles for better rotation. You should feel your heart rate getting faster.

Core warm up: Put the club behind your back and loop your arms around it. Practice shifting your weight back and forth for 60 seconds. This is to practice the motion that you are going to be doing for the day. Shift your weight to the back leg and then to the forward leg. This exercise will activate core muscles used in the golf swing.

Shoulder warm up: Put the club behind your shoulders and practice making a good shoulder turn for 60 seconds. Try to get your shoulder under your chin on the backswing and practice finishing in balance.

At this point, your muscles are loose, your joints are lubricated and now you can hit a few practice shots without feeling tight. From that point, hit five practice shots with a 80% pitching wedge to finally loosen up.

Technical aspects - Spend some quality time working on any technical aspects of your golf swing. Hopefully, you have regular lessons with a PGA Golf Coach who can help you iron out any faults and give you something to work on to improve your golf swing. It is important to hit less golf balls in the lesson as you can practice your swing more working on the key aspects you are aiming to fix.

Shot Shaping - This is a very important part of your practice. This can be done by any standard of golfer as the shot shaping ability can be altered. If you are highly skilled and can shape the golf ball left to right and right to left, then spend time working on this skill by aiming at different flags and targets, trying to shape the golf ball. If you are not as comfortable shaping it on demand, then do practice aiming to hit the golf ball higher, lower, left and right on demand.

Challenge - Make sure at the end of the practice session you challenge either yourself or a practice buddy. This way you will be practicing under pressure and this will be vital when taking your practice to the golf course.

Aim at different flags and targets and keep a noted score of your results.

Wouldn't it be great to have unlimited golf practice time?

How to Make the Most Out of Your Golf Practice

You could spend hours on the range, working on every last detail of your swing. Then, you could head over to the putting green, rolling putt after putt into the middle of the hole. Surely, with all of this time available to work on your technique, your game would improve rapidly. Right? Well, while it might not be quite that easy, it is likely that you would become a better golfer if you could practice all day long.

Of course, for most people, that isn't reality. Instead, life gets in the way, and golf practice sessions are forced to fit in among other responsibilities. Your job likely occupies a big percentage of your time, as do family-related duties, general chores, etc. When all is said and done, there isn't much time left for hobbies like golf. And, when you do have some time available to invest in golf, you probably head to the course rather than visiting the range for a practice session.

Unfortunately, there isn't anything we can do for you with regard to your schedule. The modern world is a busy one, and it's hard to keep up with everything. What we can offer, however, is some advice on how to wisely spend the little golf practice time you do have available. When you get the chance to stop by the driving range for some practice, how do you spend that valuable time? We are going to offer some tips in the article below. You may be pleasantly surprised to find how much progress you can make in limited time, as long as you are focused and have a plan in place.

All of the content below is based on a right-handed golfer. If you happen to play left-handed, please take a moment to reverse the directions as necessary.

A Two-Headed Monster

A Two-Headed Monster

When you think about practicing your golf game, you really need to divide that practice up into two components – full swing practice and short game practice. These are each extremely important, but they don't have much to do with one another. Sadly, it is the short game practice that is often overlooked by the average amateur. It is tempting to spend most of your valuable practice time on the driving range, making swing after swing. After all, who doesn't like launching the ball down the range with a driver?

While that might be fun, overlooking your short game is a big mistake. It is impossible to build a quality golf game without having the ability to putt, chip, and pitch the ball at a competent level. The best practice sessions are those which allow all aspects of your game to get a workout. Yes, you need to work on your full swing, but you need to make time for your short game as well. In fact, you will probably make the most progress if you decide to spend more time on your short game than your long game.

So, how do you organize your time to make sure that everything gets done? Let's take a look at some basic tips.

  • Think in thirds. Rather than dividing your practice time in half between your long game and your short game, try dividing it into three equal chunks. One third of your time will be spend on the long game, one third will be spend on putting, and one third will be spend on chipping and pitching. That means that two thirds of your total practice time will be spent on the short game, which is about right. This is perfectly illustrated by thinking about a one-hour practice session. If you have one hour to practice, try hitting balls for twenty minutes, hitting putts for twenty minutes, and chipping/pitching for twenty minutes. In the end, you will have spent your practice time wisely, and your game will be better for the effort.
  • Strip away distractions. One of the common problems faced by amateur golfers trying to get the most out of their practice sessions is losing focus. You arrive at the driving range with the intention of spending some focused time working on your game, but you wind up talking to other golfers for the majority of the time. Or, even if you aren't talking to anyone, you might get distracted in another way, such as looking at your phone or watching others practice. Needless to say, a potentially productive practice session can quickly be wasted if you lose focus on the task at hand. Do your best to stay on task to make sure you get the biggest possible benefit from the time you invest.
  • Have specific objectives. As mentioned above, we like the idea of dividing your practice session into thirds to make sure that you touch each area of your game before you are finished. However, you still may find yourself 'wandering aimlessly' within those sessions if you don't have a plan. So, before you arrive at the driving range or short game practice area, have a purpose in mind. What kinds of shots are you going to work on? For instance, you may decide that your full swing objectives are to find a good rhythm with your driver and to hit plenty of wedge shots. Then, on the putting green, you may want to work on short putts, since you missed a couple during your last round. Finally, your chipping goal for the day may be to improve your bump-and-run technique. Whatever the specifics may be, create a plan and then execute that plan during the allotted time.

It should be clear by this point that quality golf practice doesn't happen by accident. Rather than just walking out to the range and hoping for the best, you should be intentional with your actions from start to finish. Every minute of your time should be accounted for, and you should know specifically what you want to work on.

That last point is one that gives some golfers trouble. When trying to decide what to work on during a given practice session, many players actually default to their strengths. Instead of working on the part of the game that give them trouble, some golfers go the other direction and just rehearse those things that they already do well. Does this make sense? Of course not! For instance, if you are already confident with your driver off the tee, you shouldn't stand out on the range all day, hitting drive after drive. Sure, you can hit a few to stay sharp, but there is no sense is continually practicing something that is already a strength.

The smart way to go, of course, is to practice your weaknesses. You should be using your practice time to address the parts of the game that give you trouble, so you can perform better in those areas during upcoming rounds. If you are willing to attack your weak points during practice, those points might not be so weak in the future. Golf is a game which has a way of exposing your weaknesses, so it is up to you to fill in those gaps to the best of your ability.

Finding the Right Facility

Finding the Right Facility

One of the keys to successful practice sessions is finding the right facility to do your work. Unfortunately, this can be easier said than done, especially in certain area. If you live in an area where golf is quite popular and the weather is good all year long, you probably won't have much trouble finding a quality practice facility. On the other hand, if you live in a climate where golf is a seasonal game, a good place to work on your skills may not be so easy to track down.

It is important to note that you don't necessarily need to practice your game at the same place where you play most of your rounds. If your favorite local course doesn't have a quality practice area, look around to other facilities near your home or office to see if you can do better. When trying to decide where you are going to practice, keep the following points in mind.

  • A grass tee line is ideal. When hitting full shots, it would be best to be able to hit them from a grass surface. Artificial mats are extremely common these days, so many of the ranges near you may offer exclusively artificial hitting areas. That will work if it is your only option, but hitting from grass is far superior. After all, practice is about replicating what you will find on the course to the greatest extent possible, and you are going to be hitting your shots off of grass during your rounds. Depending on where you live, you may find that some facilities offer a grass hitting area in the summer months, while using artificial mats throughout the rest of the year.
  • A quality practice green. Some practice facilities – usually those with a golf course on the property – offer large, well-manicured putting greens. Other facilities, however, will treat the putting green as an afterthought. Since it is typically offered for free, the putting green doesn't always get the attention it deserves in terms of care. Your putting practice is going to be far more beneficial if you are able to use a good green – ideally, one which runs at a similar speed to the course where you play most of your rounds. It's possible to work on your stroke on a bad green, but it will be much more difficult to gauge your progress.
  • An area to chip. This is perhaps the most-overlooked area of the game when it comes to practice facilities. Sadly, many facilities simply don't offer a place to chip or pitch. And if they do, it may be neglected from a maintenance standpoint. If you can manage to find a golf course or driving range near you which offers a quality chipping area, you have found a winner. This area of your game needs consistent practice, but you can't put in that work if you don't have a place to do it.
  • Fair rates. Of course, this is the real world, so we need to think about pricing in addition to the amenities that you would like to find. Compare prices at the various practice facilities in your area to make sure you are getting a good deal. If you are able to practice regularly, you may want to consider a membership, if such a deal if offered. Or, at the least, you may be able to use some kind of loyalty program to save a bit of money over the long run.

Once you have done a bit of homework, it doesn't take much to spot a good practice facility. When you've found a good spot, you will notice that the range balls are relatively new, the grounds are nicely cared for, the staff is friendly, and there are plenty of other golfers around most of the time. With any luck, you'll find such a place within a short drive of your home or office.