Golf Training: Challenge Yourself

Golf Training: Challenge Yourself

I’d suggest during your next golf training session that you spend more time developing a world class short game.  Without having one, it would be nearly impossible to post good scores when you’re not striking it well.  Even when you are striking it solid, it doesn’t necessarily mean your going to hit greens or leave yourself in a great position off the tee.  On those days, having a great short game will allow you to save a few shots.

Developing that great short game comes from learning a few core concepts.  Those concepts are related to understanding what the golf balls reacts to.  The golf balls understands face angle, club path, angle of attack and speed to mention a few.  I suggest paying strict attention to these during your set-up the next time you head out to work on your short game.  Learn what happens and how the ball reacts when the ball is set back in your stance with say your lob wedge versus your gap wedge.  What was the difference?  Was there a change in flight?  Was there a change in how much the ball rolled out?  These are a few things to observe and commit to memory so you call recall the specific changes to your set-up to execute the shot out on the golf course.

Once you start to develop how and what to change to create specific ball flights, it's time to take it to the golf course.  Developing that great short game comes from constantly challenging yourself around greens.  That means not hitting the same simple shot over and over again.  This to me is seen much to often while training.  I prefer to see a golfer practice the most difficult shots possible on or around the practice green if it allows for it.  If that option isn't available then use the golf course to train these situations since the variables are always changing from hole to hole.   Work on the long chip shots with tons of break, hit that pitch shot under the tree, create the worse possible lie in the rough or bunker for that matter.   See how many times you can get up and down over a stretch of holes and situations.  Keep this in your journal as your journal will keep track of your progression.

Here is a game for you to play when your practicing playing golf.  This is going to be the ultimate short game test for you that will also serve as your benchmark and one of your goals to improve.  I want you to play like you normally would until you reach the putting green.  Once you reach the putting green, the rules will change and you have to follow these steps:

  1. If your ball lands inside 10' of the hole, you throw it on the fringe and hit a long chip shot.
  2. If your ball lands within 10'-20' of the hole then you get to throw the ball off the green and hit a 10-20 yard pitch shot from the fairway.
  3. If your ball lands on the green but outside of 20' then you get to throw the ball off the green and hit a 20-30 yard pitch shot from the rough.
  4. If your ball lands on the fringe, throw it in a green side bunker.
  5. If you ball lands in a bunker, throw it in the worse possible spot to be around the green but still leaves you a shot at the pin.
  6. I recommend this step for only the more advanced player or to somebody who really wants to challenge themselves.  If your first putt goes in, you must hit a second putt from the exact same spot.  If it goes it again, then mark your score down.

The object of golf training is to make it as difficult as possible.  The harder you make your golf training the more prepared you will become to handle the rigors of playing golf.  Remember, training shouldn't be easy.  If it's easy, you are not pushing yourself to become the best player you can become.


Thanks for reading,

Dennis Sales, Performance Golf Coach

Offering best short game golf lessons Dallas Fort Worth, Texas

2011 & 2012 Top Ranked Golf Instructor in New England