Thursday, January 31, 2019

3 Golf Tips to Start Putting Better Now

golf tips putting
Putting is often overlooked when you are practicing your golf game; it's usually placed on the back burner after you've hit everything from driver to wedge. This practice probably has you missing more putts during a round which may lead you to grumble about an inflated score.

Instead of pulling out the driver or irons first during your range session, make it a practice to head over to the chipping and putting area first, and then again during practice, to work on the short game.

According to short game guru Dave Pelz, chipping and putting are the two most important aspects in your golf game, although he believes that, in order to save more strokes, concentrate on your wedge game.

Even so, Pelz states that "putting accounts for approximately 43 percent of your total strokes."

That's almost half of your golf game!

For the time that you are at the range, consider these 3 golf putting tips:

1. Putts that are short, never go in - although this statement is pretty self-explanatory, practice the speed of your putts so that your golf ball makes into the "circle of trust" which is within about three feet.

2. Make sure your golf ball drops into the cup. It's great to hear (and oh so satisfying) the sound a golf ball when it hits the bottom, isn't it?

3. Take the time to read the lie and line of each putt and ask yourself a few questions before taking the putt such as, are you looking at an uphill, downhill or sideways lie? Make adjustments to speed and lie and "feel it" to the hole.

In the game of golf, visualization is key - your mind can help you "see" the putts rolling in if you relax and study each line.

Remember, putting is all about the speed, your line...and feel!

Add your golf putting tips in the comments area of this golf blog and tag us with your tips on Twitter @Golf4beginners.

Photo by tyler hendy from Pexels

Friday, January 25, 2019

The 2 Traits You Need for a Better Golf Game

A better golf game doesn't come about just because you purchased the hottest golf clubs on the market or because you have enlisted the aid of a qualified teaching professional - it also helps if you make a decision and commitment that you want to achieve a better game and lower score.

For the average 15 plus handicapper, consistency is rarely a strong suit - fat and thin shots, lack of proper course management, rarely add up to a low score.

Two traits to consider for a better overall golf game, in this author's opinion, are...

Consistency and Motivation.

What does it mean to have a consistent golf game? says consistent means, "constantly adhering to the same principles, course, and form"...that being said, does it mean to have a repeatable swing? Is it important to have a reliable putting stroke?

Yes and yes to the above questions and, in addition, it is important to keep your mind free from those distractions that would change the course of your consistency, such as golfers offering help or reading too many golf tips from different sources, for example.

On the flip side, according to instructor Kiel Alderink in a article, "it is the inconsistency that makes the game exciting," but, in my opinion, not necessarily for beginners. He goes on to say,...

"If you played golf every day and shot the same exact score, would that be any fun or challenging?  If you hit the ball the same height, distance, and shape every time you would get very bored.  It is the unknown that makes the game exciting.  The chance to put up your best score every time you tee it up is exciting.  If you knew you were going to shoot the exact same score as always, well that would be a walk in the park, literally."

I prefer less excitement and lower scores!!

Related Reading -  Golf Psychology: Tips to Avoid Choking

As for motivation, Merriam Webster dictionary says about this particular drive, it is, "the act or process of giving someone a reason for doing something."

I throw this question out at you ... what makes/keeps you motivated to play golf?

Is it a beautiful day for a walk in the park or, perhaps, have you been determined to lower your handicap, have been working on your short game and want to see if your efforts are bearing fruit?

For this author, and since I started writing the Golf for Beginners blog, I want to continue to have fun. I look forward with enthusiasm during the game to see if I will play better than the prior week (that and I get to play a round with my husband).

Dr. Deborah Graham, in a article summed up best the reasons to stay motivated:

"To reach full potential, it is important that competitive golfers retain as primary motivation for playing golf, a great love of the sport and an appreciation of the tremendous personal and competitive challenges it provides."

Follow Golf4Beginners on Twitter and let us know your thoughts in the comments section of this golf blog!

Friday, January 18, 2019

3 Tips for Buying Golf Clubs for Beginners

golf clubs for beginnersYou have decided to take up the great game of golf...congratulations! What is your next step?

Finding a qualified instructor to teach you swing basics, to guide you in your search for the best beginner golf clubs and to help you along the journey to a better game.

Selecting the best golf clubs for beginners should be as fun and educational as learning the game itself. It is important to choose clubs that will not only be stylish but functional and which will take you through the first learning curve and onto the next level.

In this article, Golf for Beginners offers you three tips for choosing the best golf clubs for beginners.

1. Set vs Individual Golf Clubs? A beginner to the sport may opt to select irons, woods and a putter separate from each other or select a set - since you don't know whether or not you will stick with the game and how much your swing will change while embarking on the first leg of your journey, it might be wise to settle on a set of golf clubs, complete with the basics.

Most sets will include a golf bag, putter, a driver, a few woods, irons, etc., generally a mixed bag. The key is to know what is in that mixed bag before you purchase it.

2. What should be included in a set of beginner golf clubs? PGA Tour golfer Joey Sindelar suggests that an essential set of golf clubs for beginners include, "a half set or a two-thirds set, starting with 3, 5, 7, and 9-irons and 3 and 5-wood clubs," driver and putter. His reasoning?

"If you’re not swinging hard enough you won’t even know the difference between a five, six, seven iron — there’s not enough of a gap there."

In his Golfweek article, Bill Herrfeldt suggests you skip the driver as beginners might find this golf club difficult to hit.

3. What should you look for when choosing beginner golf clubs? 

  • Value - if buying a new set, consider last year's model.
  • Larger sweet spot - easier to connect with the golf ball
  • Graphite golf shafts (for slower swing speeds) over steel

Although it is always a good idea to try before you buy, in the case of a beginner golfer selecting a new set of golf clubs, this might not work so you might want to ask your teaching pro or local golf shop owner/manager if he or she has any suggestions to get you started.

NOTE: This list was created to get the conversation started and is a good guideline but there is no substitution for meeting with a qualified professional to discuss your needs.

Friday, January 11, 2019

4 Reasons Why Walking the Golf Course is Better Than Cart Path Only

After a soaking rain, many golf courses issue a "cart path only" notice, which means players must keep their carts off of the grass so they don't destroy the grounds.

Barring any physical ailments which would hinder a nice walk in the park or hilly terrain which would need a billy goat in order to scale, there are reasons to choose walking over a golf cart ride.

If given the option to walk or ride, which should you choose?

cart path only or walk the golf course

Editor: For some courses, there is no option to walk but there are golf courses which are an easy walk.

The next time the golf shop issues a "cart path only" notice, consider this:

1. SPEED OF PLAY: You actually play faster when you walk - on your wayward shots you usually don't lose your ball because you are walking straight to it.

2. VISUAL ASSESSMENT: As you walk, you feel the wind and see the angle of your next shot so you can choose the appropriate golf club to get your ball to its next placement or on to the green.

3. YOU ARE WALKING ANYWAY! Cart path only forces you to walk to a golf ball which could be on the other side of the fairway. You also may have to carry several golf clubs to your ball in order to determine the correct distance...and... don't forget to take a towel so you can lay all of those clubs down in the very soggy grass (you don't want to get those grips wet!) 

Try walking the time you get to your ball all you need to do is address and hit your shot which saves time and effort.

4. EXERCISE: Pushing a hand cart burns calories as does a good walk in the park. Our smartphone fitness gizmo says that, after nine holes, we walked about 8,000 steps! health news confirmed, "The World Golf Foundation estimates that golfers who walk an 18-hole course clock about 5 miles and burn up to 2,000 calories.

The game is meant to be walked...young Tom Morris probably would never have considered riding to his next shot. 

If you are not ready for eighteen holes, why not start with nine?

Share your thoughts in the comments section of this golf blog and on Twitter @Golf4Beginners.

NOTE: Golf for Beginners blog and the author state that, whether or not you have a physical limitation, you should check with your doctor before walking or playing any sport.

Friday, January 04, 2019

New Year Resolutions for a Happy Golf Year

golfer driving rangeWith the new year in full swing (so to speak), golfers are making resolutions - the ultimate players are tweaking goals for themselves while beginners are laying the basic groundwork for the future.

Are you looking to shave strokes off of your handicap or are you seeking to improve your chipping?

This golf writer has created several golf goals:

1. Improve short game: chipping and putting. Concentrating on the most important parts of the game will help me to lower both my round score and my handicap.

2. Keep a positive mindset and "can-do" attitude while playing: it's easy for your thoughts to spiral downhill during a round as the strokes start to add up. Instead of focusing on the negative, catch yourself, look around at the beautiful day you have been given and think about your best shots so far during the round.

3. Practice with a purpose: No point in practice if the only thing you do during your time on the driving range is smacking golf balls as far as you can - think about every shot you take and make the most of each ball you place in front of you.

3. Play more golf! I offer this golf resolution every year and try to stand firm on this goal. Can't play 18? Go out for 9 holes! Watching a kid for the afternoon and think you can't play golf? Take the kid to the driving range and teach the game to someone new! Where there is a will, there is a way.

Whatever you choose to do, be specific about your goals, write them down and continue to review your progress throughout the year.

Happy New Year! Any questions or comments, place them in the comments section below and tag us on Twitter @Golf4Beginners.