Purposeful practice

Being located at one of the best driving range facilities in Norfolk, we see a lot of golfers practicing on a daily basis. Now, if you are coming up the range for recreation, stress relief or just to get out of the house for an hour then this may not be for you. However, if you are practicing to progress your golf game then consider some of the points in this blog. 

I had a client recently who practices frequently (2 or 3 times a week) but is struggling to see results in their game. We talked a little about what his practice session looked like and here is a summary:

  • 100 balls
  • Start with high lofted club
  • Go up the bag in random order
  • Hit towards flags on range

“how long does this normally take you?” – “30-45 minutes”.

100 balls in 30 minutes is 18 seconds a shot… 

“Does that give you enough time to prepare, execute and reflect?”

If you were training to become a sniper marksman to the highest accuracy, you would not fire one after the other as quickly as possible. 

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So… How can I practice more purposefully?

Work on a specific goal 

What do you actually want to work on today and how can you achieve this? 

“I want to drive it better” < “I want to focus on my ball flight with driver”

“My short game needs work” < “I need to work on my turf interaction with my short wedge shots”

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Specificity helps narrow the focus of the session

Measurable outcome

Having something to measure and reflect on will tell you if what you are trying to achieve is being achieved. Think about how you could use alignment sticks, tee pegs, chalk lines… not just a target in the distance on the range!

Discomfort

Being comfortable with uncomfortable situations is not just a key practice skill, but a life skill. If you embrace the uncomfortable zone, the chance for growth and creativity increases. 

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What does discomfort look like in golf practice?

  • Challenging lies – not just flat range mats!
  • Varying shots – low fades, high draws
  • Creating pressure situations – lose points for target misses

Reflect

Another important life skill which is transferred over to golf and practice. Spend time after each ball and each session to evaluate and reflect on the above points.

  • How did that shot relate to my objective?
  • How am i feeling today?
  • Was that a purposeful session?

After these questions should come a follow up question/s – not just yes or no!

 

So next time you are at the range, before you buy your basket, ask yourself how are you going to practice today?

Lewis

@LClarkePCoach