“I’d rather you grab a small bucket and make every single ball count than grab a large and just ‘drag and swing’ for an hour.” -Michael Midgette, PGA
As a PGA Professional and Instructor who’s passionate about the competitive side of the game, I’d like to share some of my observations and recommendations concerning PRACTICE. The top three “complaints” I hear from amateur golfers I coach are:
“I have trouble transferring my game from the range to the course.”
“I have no direction or any idea of what I need to work on.”
“I don’t have the time it takes to get better at golf.”
If any of these sounds familiar, I have a few answers for you.
Transferring your game from the range to the course is one VERY common thing I hear about, and yes, it is a difficult part of the game. One GIANT reason for this is not enough “transfer practice.” I see a lot of people at the range working on their swings or hitting balls. While I encourage both, you need to practice hitting at targets, changing ball flights, and even practice your pre-shot routine. These activities on the range will get you away from the mechanics of the golf swing, and into your creative (or “golfing”) brain, which you should be using on the course more than your “analytical” brain to become a better golfer.
If you have trouble gaining direction, you’re not going to find it on YouTube. While there are many excellent tips and videos you could watch, most people don’t know what areas need improvement or have had their swings properly assessed. This is almost like searching WebMD and self-medicating afterward. If you need some direction, call your local PGA Professional for a half-hour swing analysis, and go from there. At the very least, video your swing, and either view it yourself or send it to your Pro (hint: I offer online analysis programs). This is where you’re going to gain some direction.
To those that feel they don’t have the time it takes to improve, I’m going to respectfully, but strongly disagree. First, lower your expectations for your golf game relative to the amount of time you have to practice & play. Second, every session you have to yourself on the range, FOCUS. Focus on the purpose as to why you’re practicing, focus on targets, focus on the drills you’ve been given, etc. Whatever you’re trying to accomplish for yourself and your game, just focus on it as best as you can. I always tell my students, “I’d rather you grab a small bucket and make every single ball count than grabbing a large and just ‘drag and swing’ for an hour.”
I hope these tips resonate with all of you and you gain something for your game. As an SCNS Sports Foods Ambassador, I’m more than happy to answer questions and help even more. Visit michaelmidgette.com, follow me on Instagram @mikey.golf, and join my e-mail newsletter.
Michael Midgette, PGA