Practical Advice On How To Lower Your Golf Handicap
Low golf handicap – it’s every golfer’s dream.
You’re on this page, so I take it you’re not satisfied with the current handicap, and want to improve it. Whatever may be your current number – 20, 15, or 12 – the practical advice given here will help your dreams become a reality.
Evaluate your performance
To move forward, first you need to know where you stand. The following set of questions will assist you with self evaluation.
- Questions to ask after each game: What is your fairway hit percentage? What’s your GIR (Green in regulation)? Your putt per hole average? How many fairways did you miss? How many sand shots did you hit?
- General questions about skill and gear: How good is your short and long game? Areas and shots, you feel, needs improvement? Your skill playing out of the sand? Did your equipment meet your expectations? Will changing the equipment improve your game? Note down one particular aspect of your game that needs immediate improvement.
- Miscellaneous questions: How often and where did you play? What’s your preferred golf course – 9 or 18 holes? Did playing conditions and partners impact your performance?
There is no substitute for practice
Practice is the key to success, so keep visiting the driving range. Go to the range for at least two hours of practice regularly. If you already have a decent drive, constant practice will help master the stroke. Work on the short game too? Just 15 minutes of regular drill before and after each round can do you a world of good.
Sure, you enjoy the time spent on the golf course with friends, but solo play can be fun too. When playing alone, distraction is minimal, and it gives an opportunity to assess each aspect of the game on the course itself. No one is around to judge or comment on your game; take risks, try out new techniques, and don’t hold back.
Furthermore, don’t wait for ideal playing conditions to start your practice session. Rain, heat, wind, chill, etc. are opportunities to test and improve your golf skills. Enjoy the game, don’t stress too much. With regular practice your game will improve, and the handicap score will go south.
Try different golf courses
We have to warn you; don’t get too comfortable playing on your home course. The reason: doing so will make it harder to adjust to other courses and it’ll also skew your handicap. Playing on your home course you’ll become very familiar with the conditions, and this will greatly help the handicap score. But, in truth, the score is grossly inaccurate. It’ll not reflect your true skill level. Try new landscapes with different types of greens and more challenging hazards.
Prepare mentally and physically
As the pros say, ‘Golf is 90% mental’. They may have exaggerated a little, but no one can deny that mental aspect plays a crucial role. There are two sets of mental challenges golfers face. One, the pressure and complexity of the game, and the second, the emotional side that can screw up a player’s game even before the tee off.
Do you feel nervous and anxious before every game? That’s perfectly fine, all pros experience these emotions, but what sets them apart is that unlike armatures they look forwards to such situations. Relax and face the fear.
A few stretches before the game isn’t enough to keep you in shape. Regular exercise routine, that includes stretching, core workouts, and breathing exercises, can do wonders for your strength, flexibility, and concentration. Hitting 100- 150 yards consistently will remain just a pipe dream, if the swing lacks strength.