Do you have a strategy?
I’ve been listening to quite a few podcasts recently, mainly PGA On The Mark with Mark Immelman and one thing that has really struck me, is the need for a strategy before stepping onto any course. Just stepping up to the tee and then deciding what shot to hit is not the way.
So, I have started to look ahead of game day and study the course guide and decide what I am going to hit off the tee that will leave me a comfortable second within reason. I know what my current capabilities (wayward drivers, poor chipping) so I plan each hole with all these in mind.
For me, knowing what shot or club I am going to use before hand allows me to concentrate more on the over all picture and takes away the indecision that I normally have on the tee. It has allowed me to free up my thinking and then concentrate on my pre shot routine (which I am still working on), swing thoughts and other factors such as wind, before pulling the trigger.
At my home club (Canons Brook Golf Club) its a lot easier as I know the course like the back of my hand and I can select the club without even thinking, doesn’t always work though!!!
The podcast has open my eyes to more then just strategy but how to think on the course when you get into a bit of trouble. Here are a few of the things I think about or use on the course:
- Bogey from the trees is great
Putting from 5-10 feet is not easy. Go high, don’t leave it low, go past on the high side. Speed control from 20ft rather then holing it
- Approach shots (most important shot in golf), just get it on the green. The flag is not the target
Don’t play for birdie
- No need to chip in and around the green. A bump and run is great
All of this is helping me to get that handicap down and play some of my best golf. Over the next few weeks and months, I want to really nail down my pre shot routine and work on my decision making when hitting my second or approach shots.
How do you get ready for a round, do you study the course guide like me or do you just go for it???