The gym, the range and the course.

Sounds like a Narnia book, don’t you think?

I’m sat writing this just about to head to the gym, lower body day today. The dreaded ‘leg day’ as known to most gym bros for good reason, its hard work spending an hour squatting and deadlifting (I like to throw in some fun stuff like back and bicep training at the end to sweeten the deal!) but in my opinion it is the most beneficial workout of the week for my golf game. Big and strong glutes, quads and hamstrings, not to mention the smaller muscles of the hips and lower back all contribute to a solid and powerful swing. Don’t get me wrong, i’m not saying if you don’t go to the gym you wont have a solid swing but it definitely helps most of the best players in the world and plenty of aspiring amateurs to build powerful swings. I will go into more detail on workouts and exercises for golf soon.

The range/practice area and the golf course. People seem to get confused as to what should be done at each. Ask anyone and they will tell you the range is for practice  and the course is where you play, what most people then proceed to do is beat 50 balls with a 7 iron and 50 balls with their driver. Then they head over to the course where they take endless practice swings and spend more time thinking about their mechanics than the actual shot/situation they are facing. Most miss the point that the driving range and practice area is partly for ingraining mechanics and mostly for acquiring the skills you want to take to the course to improve scores. Equally people forget that the course is where you use the skills and mechanics you have practiced to hopefully put together the best round you are capable of on any given day.

I have been guilty of this in the past, I mean who doesn’t love getting in a grove at the range with a driver/iron and just pumping out great strikes over and over? The reason that wont help in a practical sense is that on the golf course you get one chance to choose the correct shot and execute that shot (unless your friends are really generous with mulligans!) so when practicing for the golf course you must get good at being in that situation.

A good example is chipping, if you are on the course, if you take 3 to get down you can’t drop your ball back where it was and tell your playing partners you are capable of getting up and down you just need a few goes. you have to get good at having one chance at a shot, my favourite way to practice chipping is to take one ball and play a set amount of ‘up and down holes’ usually 9 or 18. I will play each ‘hole’ as a par 2 and have one attempt at the chip and putt, ill tally my score to par and my aim is to be level par at the end, a tough ask I know but it gets you in the same situation you face on the course.

Bear this in mind next time you practice, make it as close to actually playing as you can and your score card and handicap will thank you for it.


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