18 helpful golf tips presented by your favorite golf shrink
By Charlie Blanchard
Today I will add to the countless number of golf tips that have been offered through the ages. The theme is “if you want to reduce your handicap, listen to your shrink”. In this case, your intrepid Dr. Golf is your shrink. Eighteen is a good number in golf, so these are concise.
Book a golf lesson with a PGA Pro from time to time. Ask your pro to watch and film both your swing and your putting to give you honest and helpful feedback and suggestions.
Carry several new golf gloves in your bag. When a glove becomes soggy, let it dry and put on a new, dry one so your hands don’t slip. Discover sales and buy in bulk.
Use a chalk line and chalk line to practice. For those tricky 4-8 foot putts, you need your eyes directly over the ball and the putter back and through.
Have your eyes checked every 24 to 36 months by an optometrist or ophthalmologist, especially if you’re over 45. As you age, eyesight often becomes problematic. If Ben Hogan’s aging eyes had been better, it’s unclear how many majors he would have won.
Add at least 15 more meters to your ride. Sure, it’s the holy grail of golf, but you can’t score unless you get your drive into position to attack the green. One way to do this is to get stronger, and gym workouts are a must for sure. Also refer to tip no. 1 above.
When you buy new clubs, have them installed. The latest clubs have lots of variations, like loft, lie angle, shaft length, stiffness and more. Mounting also helps with balls and putters.
Use a laser rangefinder or GPS device or both. They give your distance and speed up the game.
Spend half your practice time putting and chipping because half your shots are there.
For chip shots near the green, keep the ball low and running. Leave the big flop hits to the big money pros. Consider using a hybrid to get the ball higher if you’re on shorter grass.
Take a break from Facebook or YouTube and read some great classic golf books.
Replace your long irons with hybrids. Unless you’re a legit scratch handicap, you shouldn’t carry anything stronger than a 6 iron in your bag. Hybrids are much easier to hit, and go longer and higher, for people with swing speeds under 100.
Spend time practicing with alignment sticks or clubs on the ground while on the range. Two sticks, placed like rails, will help you aim for your feet, hips, eyes, arms and shoulders.
Keep track of your stats. Most amateurs only look at the score. If you’re serious about golf, you need to know your numbers. Chart your shots on the fairways, GIRs, up and down saves, putts, and more. You will find that this will highlight your strengths and direct your practice effort.
Take light on a golf trip. Airlines charge for golf clubs except for the Southwest. I keep a good set of golf clubs with distant family members so I don’t have to lug them around for visits there. Stash rain gear, caps and shoes in your golf bag, and secure clubs in a rolling travel bag with an extendable rigid club glove arm for added protection.
If you’re a corporate executive, plan (and pay for) a company golf outing with a casual meeting. Take your company’s employees and sales force out for a day of golf; even a member-guest affair, whether locally or at a resort. Do it with class and it will go a long way in keeping your key employees and even your customers happy and impressed.
Buy an adjustable driver if your clubs are still in the dark ages. The ever faster pace of technology means that clubs become obsolete in just a few years. You can adjust loft, face angle, and launch trajectory with a simple tool from the maker.
Dress like you’re a golfer and honor the game. No jeans, t-shirts or flip flops.
But you don’t always have to strictly adhere to the book. There are 24 rules of golf in the USGA book.
I have an extra – “Rule 25”: Have fun.