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Thursday, January 14, 2021

How to Get Better at Golf: The Ultimate Guide

 


Interested in learning how to get better at golf? If so, tip number one: don't underestimate what you're expected to do.


See, golf has always been a very challenging sport. Other than battling the course and conditions, you must know how to hit a variety of wildly different shots. You also need to master your mental game to avoid the yips and improve faster.


Even if you're not a complete beginner, that's a lot to keep on your plate. To make your task a bit easier, we've compiled this short guide on getting better at golf.


Use the Right Equipment


Before getting on the green, you'll want to make sure you're prepared. This includes picking the right equipment for your current skill level.


If you're shooting in the 90s, don't bother with long irons or blades. Instead, stick to hybrids or 7-woods. Your friends may give you flack over it, but at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is your score.


Picking the right golf ball is also important. If you're a complete beginner, go for a ball that's designed for distance rather than spin. As you get better, you can start trying out a softer ball that you can spin with your shorter clubs.


Tee It Forward


As a rule of thumb, teeing it forward should be your go-to move in 95% of situations. Don't make it harder for yourself by playing from the tips. This often results in many long approach shots that will slow your round down.


If you don't feel like teeing it forward every time, consider playing par-three courses. Once you get better, move on to new courses and different tees. Again, it's all about knowing your limits and keeping the experience fun for everyone.


Find Your Tempo


What do all the great PGA Tour players have in common? Simple: they make the game look easy by having complete control of their tempo.


One of the many golf tips you can learn from them is swinging with a 3:1 tempo. What this means is that their downswing is three times shorter than their backswing. Regardless of whether your swing speed is slow or fast, stick to the 3:1 tempo.


If you aren't paying attention to this rule, your game will likely be inconsistent. This includes having difficulty with your swing, transition, and follow-through.


Go Through the Setup


Golf is as much about the setup as it is about hitting the ball. Before making your shot, make sure you double-check your fundamentals.


For starters, you need to be in a proper stance. Your legs should be shoulder-width apart with your knees slightly bent. If you're using a longer club such as a fairway wood, widen your stance to compensate for it.


Once you're happy with your stance, address your posture. You want to have your head back at address while keeping your knees bent and your hips tilted.


Finally, it's important to match your grip to your swing. If you're starting out, don't overthink it and use a neutral grip. As your swing develops, take note of your tendencies and start weakening or strengthening the grip as necessary.


Keep It Cool


We all hit a bad shot once in a while—it's how you react to it that counts. Do you make it personal and act like you're the only golfer ever to hit a blunder? Or do you laugh it off and immediately start focusing on the next shot?


If you want to be a better golf player, you need to take duffs in stride. Pro golfers get paid millions to play this game and still hit a bad shot from time to time. If that happens to you, let go of the tension and remember that you're there to have fun.


Watch Your Alignment


One mistake many beginners make is aiming square at the target. If you're aiming to the right, your body will try to pull it back left. If you're aiming to the left, your mind will subconsciously try to get it back to the intended target.


If you're having trouble in this regard, check your aim before changing your swing. Have a friend record your swing or use alignment sticks at the driving range. The more square you're to your target, the better your shot should be.


Find a Consistent Swing


Speaking of golf swings, how well do you get along with your driver? If you're like most beginner golfers, chances are it's been giving you some trouble.


Well, this isn't a coincidence. The driver offers the least amount of loft, which makes it more likely to expose the flaws in your swing. If you're struggling with the driver, start focusing on distance instead of hitting it straight and work from there.


Another thing that can help is increasing your loft to at least 10.5 degrees. This is a big help in getting the ball airborne. Also, don't make it harder on yourself by playing a stiff shaft. A regular or senior flex shaft should do the trick.


Stay in Shape


Golf is a mental game—but it's also a physical one. If you're in good physical condition, your game will get better as well.


For best results, go for a weekly exercise program. You want to be able to recover quickly and reduce fatigue during a round. This is particularly important toward the end of the round, when you're more likely to feel sore, stiff, and worn out.


This is one of the many reasons why choosing a private club is worth it. A good club will have all the facilities you need to work on your stamina.


More on How to Get Better at Golf


As you can see, golf isn't as simple a game as it may appear at first. Still, the above tips should give a good idea of what to expect.


If you're a complete beginner, consider hiring a swing coach. This will help you focus on the fundamentals and create the right habits from the get-go. Even a couple of lessons can make a big difference compared to learning on your own.


Want to know more about how to get better at golf? Interested in some of the more advanced golf tricks? Keep reading our Sports section!

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