How To Set Your Priorities For a Better Golf Game
One of the keys to playing your best golf more consistently is to reduce the number of things you focus on in practice. This may seem counter intuitive, and you may feel as if every part of your game needs work and should be addressed in practice. That concept is not only wrong, but also unproductive. In fact, it’s the slowest path to improving.
You will make much more progress, much faster — and start posting lower scores sooner — through the simple process of prioritizing.
And, believe it or not, your score card has all the clues you’ll need to discover your priorities.
In this newsletter and accompanying video – Part 2 of the High Performance Game Improvement series – I’m going to show you how I use easy-to-keep statistics from the course to set my priorities. As I start to put some serious effort into improving my own golf game (coming off the long shoulder-surgery enforced layoff), I find myself asking exactly the same questions every golfer asks: What do I need to work on? Where should I spend my practice time to get the maximum results? What sort of practice regimen and drills should I be using on the range? How will I know if I am making progress?
This video will show you exactly how I answer those questions and how I am able to sharpen my focus on the most important aspects of my game – both good and bad – to determine my top priorities. By selecting the one or two top priorities (both strengths and weaknesses) that will make the biggest impact on your scores — and then focusing 80% of your efforts on just those areas — you’ll give yourself a better chance of accomplishing your goals, and you can do it far faster than you imagine.
(Want your own copy of ScoreTracker? Click HERE)
Begin At The End
So let’s start with the end in mind and work backwards from there.
The goal of your course navigation strategy should always be to put yourself in situations where you are playing from your strengths.
Want the perfect example? Consider Luke Donald.
Luke Donald finished the 2011 season ranked the number one player in the world. But you’d never guess it from his driving stats. He finished 147th on the tour in driving – pathetic by PGA Tour standards.
So how did he wind up the #1 player?
By finishing in the Top 10 in a number of other categories:
- 8th in scrambling;
- 8th in accuracy inside 100 yards;
- 2nd in accuracy from 50 to 125 yards;
- 1st from 100 to 125 yards;
- Top 5 in putting inside 15 feet, and;
- #1 in putting from 5 to 10 feet.
No other player is in the Top 10 in so many categories.
These are clearly his areas of strength, and he is smart enough to navigate his way around the golf course so that he is hitting from these distances as often as possible.
Do you think he is working on his driver? You bet. It’s probably his number one game improvement priority. But it’s not his only priority.
Clearly, he spends just as much time in his areas of strength, keeping his skills in these areas fine-tuned and sharp. How do we know that? His scoring shot skills from 50 to 125 yards and his putting from 5 to 15 feet are the strongest in the world. And, when all was said and done, this is what earned him millions of dollars and the #1 ranking.
Do you have to be excellent at every aspect of the game? Luke Donald is proof that you don’t … provided you cultivate and continue to sharpen skill strengths you can rely on — with complete trust — when you play.
During your next round, use your scorecard as a tool for identifying your own strength/weakness profile.
In the next newsletter I’ll show you how I use my scorecard priorities to select specific targeted drills, frame my practice session, and then practice effectively.
Here are links to the entire High Performance Golf Newsletter Series. If you haven’t seen the videos I recommend you start with the first post on establishing performance baselines. Click the link below to get started, then look for the links at the bottom of each post to continue with the next video:
High Performance Golf: Establishing a Performance Baseline
High Performance Golf: Scorecard Analysis and Setting Priorities
High Performance Golf: Driver Accuracy Practice (part 1)
High Performance Golf: Driver Accuracy Practice (part 2)
High Performance Golf: Determining Mid-Iron Carry Distance
GET A FREE COPY OF SCORETRACKER
If you’d like a free copy of the ScoreTracker spreadsheet and instructions for using it, please click this link to the ScoreTracker Page.
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