Golf is a game of many different skills including hitting the ball straight, chipping around the green, putting, bunker shots and many more. But none of these would be possible without the correct frame of mind and focusing one hundred per cent on the job at hand. So by approaching each shot with the right mind set you will probably play better golf and therefore increase your enjoyment of the game. The tips below should help the novice golfer to remove some of those shots from the score card.
Golf tip — First tee relaxation
Make sure that when arriving at the first tee you are relaxed; this will help you play better golf. One of the worst things you can do if you want to play a good round of golf is turn up at the golf course when you are very tense or even in a bad mood.
Golf tip — Position on the tee
When there are trees or some deep rough down one side of the fairway, many golfers tend to tee up as far away as they can to the opposite side, which more often than not is counter productive. You should tee up nearer to the trees or rough and you will find that your shots stay on the fairway more often.
Golf tip — See your shot first
When preparing to take a golf shot, try to visualise the shot in your head, just like an action replay. This seems to work for many golfers, also, other sportsmen and women use this method in which they rehearse the action in their mind and hopefully the body will repeat it. Doing this will also help you to focus your mind on the forthcoming shot.
Golf tip — Dealing with a Slice
If you have a tendency to slice the golf ball, don’t try to aim further to the left to compensate for your slice. Many golfers do this and it is not until perhaps your playing partner points this out when they are standing behind you at address, slicers often try to compensate without even realising they are compensating. When at address go through a routine of making your feet, shoulders and the back of your left hand square to your target. Slow your swing down and make sure you are controlling the club with your left hand and arm not powering with the right arm.
Golf tip — Play one shot at a time
When playing golf you don’t want too many distractions especially if you are in a competition. Some of them are self inflicted and probably the most common distraction amongst high handicappers is the inability to focus only on the shot you are about to play instead they are thinking about the next hole or if I shoot a five on the next three holes, and so on. Just concentrate on what you are doing at that particular moment and not about all the what ifs for the rest of the round.
Golf tip — Enlarge the cup on extra long putts
When I was learning to play this great game, one of the best pieces of putting advice I had, was when you are faced with a really long putt try to imagine a two or three feet circle around the hole and aim for that. This will hopefully give you more two putts and less three putts
Golf tip — Hitting over the lake
If you are about to hit your shot over a lake or any hazard you should be thinking positive thoughts about your shot and where you want it to land. Don’t start being negative when playing over a hazard these types of thoughts are very destructive. My friends used to say to me when we were about to hit over water, “whatever you do don’t think about the lake” and of course I did and I had to fish my ball out of the lake.
Golf tip — Hit behind the ball in a bunker
Another good piece of advice when learning golf, if you are like me when I was younger and having trouble getting out of bunkers, try to visualise hitting the sand about three inches behind the ball, this helped me a lot in the beginning. Also, when taking a shot in a bunker it is still a golf swing, you are not digging your way to Australia.
Golf tip — Know when to play the percentages
Many golfers especially the inexperienced ones love to try and take short cuts when for example they are in the woods and their chances of hitting the ball in the direction of the green are virtually nil yet they still attempt the shot ending up in a worse spot and adding two or three shots to their card. Don’t be too greedy think about the shot, it might be better to lose one shot by hitting out sideways onto the fairway than losing a possible three shots by taking unnecessary risks.
I hope the above paragraphs are interesting, and they help you on your way to playing better and more enjoyable golf.