The Monday following a major is a popular day for golfers to get on their grind and hit the practice tee. With that in mind, here’s the second installment of my “Grand Slam” Practical Practice series.
A lot of golfers say to me, “I hit the ball so well on the range, but when I head out on the course, I fall apart.” My answer is always the same – “You’re not alone.” This is a common issue with most golfers, and it also carries over to practice swings. Many players take wonderful practice swings, but as soon as they approach the ball, the wheels fall off.
My best advice to overcome this is to practice the way you play. Every shot on the range should be treated with as much care and attention as the ones on the actual course. If you just get up and whack balls on the range without that focus, all you’re doing is working on your range game, which, aside from trying to impress people who really don’t care, will get you nowhere when it actually comes time to tee it up for real.
Approach practice as you would a real round of golf, and simulate the course in your mind when you hit the range. Visualize the first fairway, pull out the driver, get behind it, take practice swings, throw grass in the air, and hit a “real” tee-shot. Then, take out a club that you think you would use on your second shot, and try to stick the pin. By practicing the way you play, you will have more confidence during a round – because you’ve been there before. And the most important aspect of simulating an on-course shot is going through your pre-shot routine every time you strike a ball. Routine clears the mind of negativity and allows for maximum performance.