Tips for Finding the Best Golf Coach

When looking for an instructor, most golfers would start their search in golf courses that are nearest to them. In most cases, they would take lessons from any of the pros at the golf course where they spend most of their time in. While there is nothing wrong in seeking help from instructors near your area, there is no guarantee that these instructors would help you take your game to the next level.

If improving your game is important to you, then you need to choose your golf instructor carefully. Here are some tips for finding the best golf coach.

Consider your needs

Most golfers take golf lessons without even considering what they want to get out of it. In order to get the most out of your golf lessons, it is important that you ask yourself why you need golf lessons in the first place.

Do you want to reach a certain level of handicap? Do you have a specific goal? Do you want to increase driver stance? Do you have a slice, hook or short game problem? Take these things into consideration when choosing a golf instructor. This way, it would be easier for you to search for the right instructor who can help you reach your goals.

PGA or LPGA accreditation

When seeking a golf professional to help you with your game, make sure that person has the experience and education to take your game to the next level. In this case, we strongly suggest that you choose an instructor who is a member of the LPGA or PGA. You cannot get any better instruction than from someone with an active accreditation with the LPGA or PGA. They have a good deal of expertise in the game and have the ability to teach the basics in an understandable way. They have already given lots of golf lessons and are continuously being exposed to up-to-date golf teaching practices.

Compatibility

Before taking lessons, you want to make sure that you connect with the instructor. Of course, there is no way to tell whether or not you’ll have a good relationship unless you spend time with that person. Call the instructor and ask if they can talk to you about your game and improvement goals. Here, you’d be able to gauge if you’ll get along. Look for someone who you enjoy spending time with. After all, you’ll be spending a lot of time together.

4 Ways to Improve Pace of Play

Most golfers go out to the golf course to relax and unwind. But considering how much time it takes to finish the game, a lot of golfers make the decision not to play. This is especially true for golfers who are living ridiculously busy lives. I am one of them.

Most golfers play too slow. However, nobody wants to admit that slow play is their fault. No matter how much you deny it, I’m here to tell you that everyone is guilty of it.

In the hopes of improving pace of play, we have compiled some tips and suggestions that will help speed up the game a little. Maybe you can pass them on to golfers who could really use them. Here are 4 ways to improve your pace of play.

Keep up with the group in front of you

To help keep play moving at a brisk pace, try to keep up with the group ahead of you. Get going after hitting your shot. Remember, your place on the course should be behind the group in front of you, not in front of the group behind you.

Be helpful to others in your group

If there is a lost ball, you can help your playing partner find the ball while the others are hitting their shots. But please try not to spend too much time searching for the ball. Never spend more than 5 minutes looking for a lost ball.

Keep your pre-shot routine short

We all know that pre-shot routines are essential before every shot, but it doesn’t have to take forever. If your pre-shot routine involves making practice shots, you are free to do so. But please limit your practice shot to one or two. You are free to take as many practice swings as you want while waiting for your turn.

If your pre-shot routine is quite lengthy, then you might want to shorten it a bit. If possible, try to hit your shot within 20 seconds. From club selection to pre-shot routine to execution, everything should be done within 20 seconds.

Plan your shot before you get to your ball

To prevent unnecessary frustration from the group behind you, we suggest that you use the time to get to your ball to prepare for your next shot. Also, make your club selection and determine your yardage while waiting for your turn. Small things like this can significantly improve pace of play.

A Solid Pre-Shot Routine is a Must for Golf

A pre-shot routine is systematic and consistent procedure that is executed by golfers before every shot. It is a habit that virtually every professional golfer has. The best players understand how a pre-shot routine can improve the outcome of each shot.

Most golfers are aware of the importance a pre-shot routine is. However, they often deviate from it during a round. Others would say they do have a pre-shot routine, but they can’t tell you what it is when asked.

Here are some of the main benefits a good pre-shot routine can provide.

Gets you to a state of readiness

Before the shot, you should be physically and mentally ready. Having a solid pre-shot routine helps you imagine the trajectory and ball height of your shot and prepares you to make your swing. Without one, you’ll simply be hitting the ball without a clear idea of what you want to do. If you want to have a consistent golf swing, then you need to establish a pre-shot routine.

Quiet your mind

A lot of golfers often wonder why they can’t swing on the course as well as they do on the range. This is because you let the pressure get to you. You tell yourself that you can’t screw up best because everyone’s eyes are on you. Unfortunately, you find yourself getting a double or a triple bogey.

By settling into a familiar routine, you learn how to quiet your mind, preventing you from over-thinking the shot. Rather, you allow your body to take over and execute the routine.

Set the pace for your shot

When it comes to golf, you need to keep a slow, steady and consistent pace. Nerves can become a hindrance to taking a smooth, consistent swing. Rushing is a symptom of nervousness. You rush because you want to get it over with, and this can lead to inaccuracy.

A solid pre-shot routine allows you to set the pace for your shot. It reminds you to slow things down and keep the tension and anxiety levels down. It sets a positive mental and physical tone for your shot.

Golden Rules of a Great Mental Golf Game

A lot of golfers take golf lessons in the hopes of improving their game. While there is no denying that physical skills will help you achieve your goal, you won’t be able to perform your best if you don’t invest in your mental game. There is no point in having a fantastic swing if you can’t chip or putt when you’re being watched by other golfers or the public.

If you are committed to being the best golfer possible, it is important that you develop and practice the psychological practice of your golf game. Here are the golden rules of a great mental golf game.

Deal with your nerves

Nervousness is as common in golf as it is in other sports. There are several reasons why golfers get nervous on the course. Perhaps they’re worried that they may not play to their expectations or play poorly in front of their playing partners. We tend to associate nerves with fear or doubt, which is why most people perceive it as negative.

Nervousness, on the course, is actually a good thing. In fact, the best players actually embrace it. If you can start putting a positive association with that feeling, it can be harnessed into a more positive force more powerful than you can imagine. If you can do this, then you’ll be able to perform to your true potential and enjoy your time on the golf course even more.

Visualize the shot

Visualize how and where your swing will land the ball. Imagine how your shot will turn out, how your ball will bounce, how high it will go and where it will travel. Picture the path your ball will take to the target. By visualizing the shot, your brain actually tricks your body into stimulating your body to do the same; thus, making your shots more consistent.

Set realistic goals

There is nothing wrong with playing for fun, but it’s always a great idea to set golf before heading to the course.

The best players set very specific goals before each round. It gives you the purpose and something to strive for every time you play golf. Be sure, though, that you set realistic goals. If you set big goals, you’ll only set yourself up for disappointment.

 

How to Stop a Bad Shot from Ruining Your Golf Game

How to Stop a Bad Shot from Ruining Your Golf Game

You were having a nice game. Things are going nicely and you’re having a great time with your golf buddies. For a split second, you lost your concentration and all of a sudden, you end up with a double-bogey, which caused your level of play to quickly spiral down.

Bogeying can be devastating. With the self critical thoughts cascading through your mind and the rush of intense emotions coursing through your veins, you end up ruining the rest of your round. To be a better golfer, you need to develop the mental toughness and learn how to bounce back from these shockers. Don’t let a disastrous hole ruin your golf game.

Slow down and breath

When things get tough on the course, call a mental time out and take a deep breath. You can take a walk, clench and unclench your fists, change gloves or any physical task that would provide a momentary beak from the situation. This will help clean your mental slate before the next shot.

Manage your expectations

Don’t expect your round to be perfect. Even the best golfers in the word can make mistakes. If you expect too much of yourself, you’ll end up frustrated and disappointed in yourself. Manage your expectations and allow yourself to make mistakes during the game.

Stop dwelling on your mistakes

It’s amazing how easy it is for many of us to get derailed with just a single bad shot. Golfers would mumble to themselves, “what a stupid shot I hit” and carry it to their next shot. However, negative emotions will not only tense you up physically, it will also cause you to lose control mentally and emotionally. As a result, you follow a bad hole with an even worse one.

In golf, you must be in control of your thoughts and emotions before you can control your performance. Forget about the bad shots. Your focus should be on the next shot, not on the previous shot.

How to Keep Your Golf Game Fresh in the Off Season

Since most courses are closed in the winter, golfers take a break from golf during this time of the year and focus on other things instead. However, you are likely to lose your fine-tuned touch if you take a few months off. Mind you, getting your golf swing back after winter isn’t easy.

Instead of taking the winter off, use it as an opportunity to improve your golf game. Here’s how to keep your game fresh in the off season.

Swing everyday

Just because you can’t play golf, doesn’t mean that you should keep your clubs in the closet until spring. You can practice your golf swing at home, as long as you have enough space. If possible, we recommend that you practice in front of a mirror.

By doing practice swings every day, you’ll stay in touch with your clubs. Plus, practicing your swing in front of the mirror will help you visualize hitting the perfect shot.

Get fit

Golf may seem like an easy sport. All you have to do is to swing the club until you put the ball in the hold. Easy, right? Not necessarily.

A round of golf usually lasts for 4 to 5 hours, sometimes more, depending on your pace of play. During the game, you’ll have to bend, swing the club repeatedly and walk a few miles. In order to play a great game, you need strength, flexibility and stamina.

This winter, start a fitness program that includes stretching and strength training. Or better yet, find a fitness instructor who can prescribe the right workout routine for you.

Take a lesson

Winter is a great time to review your fundamentals, as well as make certain changes to improve your swing. Find a qualified golf instructor in your area and take a golf lesson.

Changing your golf swing and developing new habits takes a lot of time and practice. Since you can’t play golf due to the cold weather, you still have time to adapt to these changes before the golf season starts.

Managing Your Emotions on the Golf Course

Managing Your Emotions on the Golf CourseGolf is a game that requires focus and concentration. In order to play a great game, your mind should be fully alert and your body relaxed. Most golfers have the ability to stay calm under pressure. However, there are times when golfers get angry or frustrated that we sometimes see golfers who scream, yell or even throw their clubs in frustration. If this sounds like you, then you need to manage your emotions.

Anger is normal. Everyone gets angry sometimes. But when you let anger take over, it interferes with your performance and sabotages your game. Not only is it difficult to play when you blow your top, it also makes you lose your focus. You become over-aroused and forget the skills you so carefully practiced. The angrier you become, the more mistakes you make. By the end of the round, you come home feeling frustrated; defeating the purpose of having fun and relaxing on your day off.

Here are some tips on how to keep your temper in check on the golf course.

Manage your expectations

Most golfers would spend a lot of time on the golf course, looking for ways to improve their game. They would visit the driving range; practice more and even take some golf lessons. Of course, when you put this much effort into improving your game, you would expect better results.

Before you head to the course, we suggest that you make a list of your goals – long-term and short-term goals. Once you’ve decided on your goals, go over them once again. Are they realistic? Are you confident enough that you can achieve those goals? Setting unattainable goals can lead to disappointment, and ultimately, frustration.

Accept the outcome of each shot

We all hit bad shots. Even professional golfers do. Some may feel bad; while others just brush it off. How you react to those bad shots will determine how you perform from then on. If you dwell on your mistakes, your game is likely to suffer. Keep getting angry and golf will give you more reasons to explode. Learn to accept the outcome of each shot. Focus on your next shot and give it your best.

It’s just a game

Unless you’re playing competitive golf, it is just a casual game you play with your buddies on your free time. You play golf to stay fit, to relax and have fun.

We know you’re doing everything you can to improve your game. But if you fail, there is no need to get upset. Remember, it’s just a game.

Top Golf Tips for Women

Golf Swing Tips for Women

Golf Swing Tips for womenGenerally speaking, women do not hit a golf ball as far as men. But that does not necessarily mean that men are always better. With the right technique and some practice, you can generate more power out of your golf swing.

In the hopes of helping women golfers build a solid, consistent swing, we gathered some of the most important swing tips every women golfer should know. Keep these tips in mind and start swinging like a golf pro.

Wider-than-shoulder-width stance

Men can get away with a narrow stance. But since women have wider hips as compared to men, a narrow stance will throw a woman off balance. Women need more stability to create better resistance and control the hip turn. The best female players in the world are those with a stance that is wider than their shoulders.

Use your woods and drivers

A lot of golfers spend time practicing with their long clubs and lesser time with their woods and drivers. During a round, you’ll be using your woods and drivers more frequently as compared to 5 or 6 irons, so you might as well give them a good workout.

Swing your body around

Most amateurs would slap at the ball and try to scoop the ball into the air. Despite striking the ball as hard as you can, it isn’t going to go as far as you had hoped. In fact, the harder you try, the worse your shot will be. To increase clubhead speed and add distance, you need to make a complete turn with your hips on your backswing. This will create more momentum for the downswing.

Grip

Once the club hits the ball, the power that your hips and shoulders have generated will transfer to your hands.  You will lose a great deal of power if your grip is compromised. That said, it is important that you get accustomed to using the proper grip. Practice holding the club in the correct position.

Beginner Tips for Women Golfers

Beginner golf tips for womenGolf can be quite an undertaking for someone who’s just beginning the game. So many different kinds of clubs. So many rules. But once you have familiarized yourself with the basics, you will then realize that golf is a rewarding game that you can enjoy for many years.

Check out the tips below and start spending a sunny day with friends out on the course.

Learning to play

Taking a lesson from a golf pro before going out to the course is highly recommended. Learn the basic swing mechanics. Learn to putt, how to hit your driver, fairway woods and irons.

You can contact golf practice centers and local courses for individual lessons. Here, you can be sure that the instructors are certified by the Golf Teachers Association of America, LPGA Teaching & Club Professional Division and the PGA.

What you need to know about clubs

Choosing the right equipment will ensure that you’ll have a great game. However, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get started. Most golfers start by renting clubs from the golf course or just borrowing some of their friend’s clubs.

Once you have decided that you want to commit to this game, then that’s the only time that you should buy your own set. Start with a basic set of clubs, nothing too expensive. After all, you can always upgrade later on.

Before the game

Now that you’ve learned some basics and you’ve got your clubs ready, it’s time to test yourself on an actual game.

We know that you’re excited to get started, but you need at least 10 to 20 minutes to warm up. Do some stretching exercises, take light practice swings and hit a few balls before the game.

Let the games begin

Remember, golf sucks at first. You’re not gonna be shooting a perfect game of golf. But it will get better in time.

Make it a point to play at least 2 full rounds a month. As a beginner, you should focus on developing your game instead of the score. Test different clubs, try different shots.

Keep Your Game Hot Even When It’s Cold Outside

keep-your-game-hot-even-when-its-cold-outsideNot all of us are fortunate enough to live in warmer states, where golfers have an opportunity to play golf year round. In fact, the golf season is coming to sad, sad end for many of us around the country.

Cold weather golf may not be the most fun golf there is, but we’re sure you’ll have a wonderful time if you come prepared.

Here are some tips to enjoy a great golf game in cold weather.

Dress in layers

What you wear will affect how you perform on the course. Depending on how cold the weather is, you want to wear multiple layers. But don’t bundle up so much that you can’t even make a good, full swing.

On a calm, 35 to 40-degree day, you can play in a compression shirt, a golf shirt and a wind vest. This is enough to keep you warm, but won’t hinder your ability to swing a club. Don’t forget to carry hand warmers. Try your best to keep your hands warm. If your hands get cold, the feel for the club and rhythm are lost.

Walk

Although it’s more convenient to ride a golf cart, it would be best if you walk the course. Not only is it a great form of exercise, it can also help keep you warm. This gets your blood flowing so you stay warm. Ditch the golf cart. You’re less likely to stiffen up if you walk.

Take an extra club

Golf balls don’t travel as far in cold weather. Plus, you’re wearing more clothes and your muscles are going to be tight. Meaning, you may have a hard time reaching typical distances with each club. Consider playing one tee up from your normal length.

Drink up

A lot of golfers drink beer alcoholic beverages to keep their body warm in the cold weather. But the truth is, drinking alcohol lowers the core temperature of your body. Save the booze until after your round.

A better option would be to bring a thermos with some herbal tea or hot chocolate and then take small sips throughout the round.

4 Ways to Maintain Your Golf Game in the Off Season

4-ways-to-maintain-your-golf-game-in-the-off-seasonWith winter fast approaching, we all know that our time on the golf course is numbered. Many of you are probably preparing to put your clubs away for the winter.

Just because the fairways are covered in ice, doesn’t mean you should just hibernate. We recommend that you take advantage of the off season and use this time to prepare for the next golf season.

Here are 4 ways to maintain your golf game in the off season. Use these tips so you can tee up with confidence once the warm weather returns.

Improve your mental game

A lot of golfers may not realize this, but your mind is your most powerful tool. No matter how expensive your clubs are, you won’t be able to perform your best without focus and concentration.

You can use the time away from the course to put together your mental approach to the game and start practicing it. This is also a great time to work on your pre-shot routine.

Stay in shape

The off season is great for working on getting stronger and more flexible. Do some yoga, lift some weights, do cardio exercise or any form of exercise that will help increase muscular strength, flexibility and endurance.

Regular exercise will not only help improve your golf game, it will also help you stay fit and live a healthier life.

Keep your mind active

On a cozy winter night, nothing feels better than to curl up in bed with a good book and mug of hot chocolate. Read some golf books such as Leslie Nielson’s “Stupid Little Golf Book”, “The Greatest Game Ever Played” by Mark Frost and Ben Hogan’s Five Lessons: The Modern Fundamentals of Golf. If you really love the game, you’ll surely appreciate these books.

Use a mirror

While there is no substitute for getting out on the course, practicing your swing in front of a mirror lets you check your swing posture, along with your hand and arm positions in the backswing and throughswing. Plus, it will help you familiarize yourself with changes you make to your golf swing.

Setting up a practice studio in the basement or garage is fairly simple. All you need is a full-sized mirror and a tape to create alignment marks on the floor.