The first time I played golf I was 16 and I loved the game. I was also beyond bad. I hit my ball into every sand trap and body of water on the course. Sometimes I even managed to completely miss my ball. The question of how to get better at golf was always on my mind.
The only reason I did not give up on the first course was that I believed I could get better. I started asking questions and receive a lot of advice, some good, some bad. I admit I am stubborn, but I do know how to listen to advice. For this reason, I recommend taking lessons.
I knew there had to be a way to shave some strokes off my score but I had no idea how. In order to improve, you must understand what you are doing wrong and the steps necessary to correct the issue.
Practice is critical because you need to have a feel for your clubs. Simply hitting the course with enthusiasm is not enough. You must swing correctly and finish your swing or you will end up in a sand trap. I learned a lot from my coach and although I will never win a professional tournament, I can hold my own.
I recommend asking a pro for a few drills. This will help identify your weak areas so you can pinpoint your practice sessions. In one of the drills, I was shown shaved strokes off my score. Start with 10 balls and put them into a circle three feet from your hole.
Try to sink all of them as you move around the circle. Every time you miss, start over. Keep going until you sink all 10 in a row. I can almost guarantee when you succeed you will cheer.
How To Get Better At Golf With These 10 Pro Tips
Tips to Improve Your Game
To improve your game, try the following:
- Use your favorite club as often as possible
- Hit your ball diagonally directly into the wind
- Have your putter fit for you
- Hold your pose after completing a shot
- Practice your worst shots often
- Know the total yardage of your course
- Stretch your hamstrings
- Take the time to calm down after a bad shot
- Calibrate your short game
- Have patience
Lessons and Practicing
Spend your money on lessons before you purchase a new set of clubs. The first step is to make a commitment to improving your game. The second is finding a professional coach. Lastly, make certain you follow through on the commitment you have made.
If you have recently discovered golf, a coach will teach you the fundamentals. If you began playing a while ago, you can smooth out your rough edges. If you are not familiar with any pros in your area, check with your local golf course.
To improve your game, you need a lot of practice. Go to a driving range and practice making all different types of shots and experiment with your clubs. If your putter does not feel comfortable in your hands, have it fit you.
Do not hesitate to ask for help if there is a specific shot you are unable to make. Nobody in the history of golf ever shot a perfect game on their first attempt.
Click the video above to watch.
Have a Plan
You can go to the range, swing, and hit every ball and still not improve. Your muscle memory will suffer and bad habits will form. The next time you play, have a plan. Choose targets in the distance to replicate the demands of the course.
Use a different club for every ball. Try using your driver, fairway wood, 7-iron, and wedge in a consecutive sequence. This will prevent you from using the same club every time and help you understand which club is the best choice for each type of shot.
Understanding Different Clubs
Every club was designed with a purpose. Each one sends your ball at a particular trajectory and a specific distance. Your hybrids, fairway woods, and driver are the longest clubs in your bag with less loft on the face and longer shafts.
This means your ball will go farther. The shaft on your irons becomes shorter as the loft increases. This means your ball will travel a shorter distance and come down steeply as you go from a 5-iron to a sand wedge.
When you are using a shorter club such as a wedge, the ball should be hit during the descent of your swing arc. Your ball needs to be slightly behind center. When you use a driver, your ball should be close to your front foot at about six inches.
If you do not yet understand the purpose of each club, read your owner’s manual or ask your coach for instruction.
High Bounce Wedges
Find a good sand wedge with plenty of bounce. You can make pitch and bunker shots easier without getting stuck in the ground.
A higher bounce angle also helps to smooth minor mistakes such as leaning your shaft too far forward when you strike the ball. The forgiveness in a sand wedge will help to improve your technique.
Also related: Lob wedge vs sand wedge (The differences explained)
Strength and Flexibility
Just because practice is important does not mean you will always be able to access a golf course or range. Even if you are practicing in your backyard, you can improve your strength and flexibility.
Try to take a minimum of 100 practice swings every day. You will learn the different positions of your clubs and build a repeatable motion. You do not need a course to practice and improve your swing.
Click the video above to watch.
Calibrating Your Short Game
There are a lot of excellent wedges on the market. A lot of the pros have as many as four wedges in their bags. You also need more clubs for other shots which can seem overwhelming at first.
You may not have played enough to have distance control. Try calibrating short games. You can write the information down onto the shafts of your clubs. This will teach you which club to use so you are prepared when the time comes to hit.
Stretch Your Hamstrings
Your hamstrings are critical to playing a good game and preventing injuries. If your hamstrings are short and tight, your game will suffer. You can stretch your hamstrings in two different ways.
Lie down on your back in the center of an open doorway. Extend one of your legs up the frame of the door while keeping your other leg flat on the floor with your toes up. Hold the position for a few seconds then repeat with your other leg.
Balance on one leg, then lean forward using your torso. Extend the other leg behind you. Stop when your chest is about parallel to the floor. Go back to a standing position and repeat for several reps. Switch legs and repeat. If you are having a problem with balance, try holding onto something.
Purchase your clubs strategically. You do not need to begin with a full bag. You need one club for hitting off your tee on par 4s and 5s.
You will require two to three clubs for advancing your ball down the fairway in increments of about 100, 150, and 200. A hybrid or 7-iron are both good choices.
A sand wedge is necessary for the green and a putter is needed for greenside bunkers. If you have the money available, you can still purchase a full set and only use what you need to start. You can also purchase high-quality, used clubs individually at numerous golfing websites.
You need to learn when to play it safe and when to be aggressive. If you are confronted with a shot you know you will be unable to make, let it go. Instead, hit the ball into a spot where you can make the next shot easier.
If you believe you can make a difficult shot, be aggressive and save your score. If you consistently try to hit shots you are unable to make, your score will suffer.
The Bottom Line
Learning how to get better at golf requires both time and patience, but it is also worth the effort. Try not to take yourself too seriously and have fun on the course. You do not want to place so many demands on yourself you stop having fun and dread going to the course.
Concentrate on one thing at a time and continue until you improve and are satisfied with your results. Eventually, you will see improvements in your overall game. Every time you lose, view it as an opportunity to play a better game.