How to Practice

What do you do when you go to the rang to work on your game?  Do you just dump out the bucket and start hitting and it is over once the last bullet is gone? Here is a great way to get the most out of your practice time.  In the above photo there are 60 balls laid out and took 45-60 minutes to go through the process. Remember quality over quantity. If you are a newer golfer quantity matters but when you start to get proficient quality takes the lead.

60 Ball Plan: YouTube Video on Practice Setup
-First 10 Balls are used with a wedge to warm up. Get the body moving, controlling contact, and playing leapfrog.

-Next 30 Balls will be for improving your technique. Results on the ball do not matter. What matters here is you are doing the drills you need in order to move your skills to the next level. A pass is if you pass your drill not if you hit the ball close to a target. One row is drill #1 and the next row is drill #2. Once you hit 5 balls of drill #1 move to #2. When done with drill #2 go back to drill #1 and repeat the process. This way you have 5 balls to work on the drill and create the motion change. After that you have to forget what you were doing and concentrate on the next drill. When you go back to the original drill now you have to remember what you were doing and repeat the motion. This adds a little spacing between drills, allows the body to forget, and gets it to recall. If you just did 20 balls in a row at some point the mind will shut off and progress will sees. Use alignment rods to make sure you are aimed in a good direction and the ball position is good.

-Next 10 balls are going through your process with full routines and hitting different shots: pre shot, react, and reflect. Visualize shots you will have for the day, holes you know on your course, and change targets/clubs often. OB might be right, water left, bunker short, or some other obstacle you need to avoid. If you are a high skilled golfer change your intention after every ball, if you are newer to the game swing the same club to the same target for 4-5 balls, and if you’re in the middle hit 2-3 before changing. Remember quality here is important so don’t just rifle through the balls. If it was a good shot store it in your mind and if you missed you missed. What could you change on the next shot to have a better outcome? On the course you get one chance then have down time to ponder what happened before you get to your ball and swing again. Go in and out of using alignment rods. Maybe alternate stations from a ball with guidance to a ball without.

-Last 10 balls is for you to challenge yourself. This is where you need to win your way off the practice field and put some pressure on. An example could be you are going to hit 5 drivers and 5 wedges alternating between. Can you hit one drive down a designated fairway and if you succeed you get 1 point. Then hit a wedge to a given target, something that is 60-100 yards out. If the ball comes to rest in a proximity you are ok with you get 1 point. At the end make up a consequence for the game say if you do not get 4 out of 5 points on the driver challenge you have 10 pushups and if the wedge is below 4 points you have 5 more minutes on the treadmill. The games and consequences can be what you want but if there if nothing tied to the game you will not feel the pressure. Challenge yourself! All alignment rods come up since you can not use these on the course.

Remember train smart and make practice harder than you play. That way when you play you know how to handle the pressure and the playing part is easy because you have done it in practice.