One aspect of the game that many golfers do not think about is the mental and physical pre-round preparation that it takes to play well. Many of us get to the course just minutes before our tee time, feeling unprepared for what is come. Golf is a very difficult game for which you need to give your mind time to prepare for. Along with the mental aspect, it is important that you give yourself not only enough time to hit balls but also be able to chip a couple balls and roll some putts to get a feel for what is to come. The knowledge that is gained from a pre-round routine is essential to playing the game to the best of your ability. So, let’s go over a couple of tips that will help you fully prepare for your round.
First and foremost, you must have a plan in place and stick to a routine. A routine will give your body the same feelings before each round, allowing you to fully focus on what is to come. I would recommend arriving at the course at least 45 minutes to an hour prior to your tee time. This means getting to the course in time to take care of things that many of us do not take into account for time wise. From paying for greens fees, talking to other golfers and purchasing drinks, food, etc., all of these small tasks will take away from what you really need to be focusing on. Providing yourself adequate time to do all of the necessary steps is important to playing the game well.
Now that you have arrived to the course in a timely fashion, let’s look at the physical preparation that is required to play this game. The time that you take on the range will give your body time to adjust for what is to come. I like to keep my routine on the range pretty simple by hitting just a few different clubs but trying to focus on where the ball is going. This may mean bringing a wedge, seven iron, fairway metal or driver to the tee or whichever combination of a few different clubs you would like. The main objective here is to hit some different shots with different clubs so that once you get out onto the course your body feels that it has hit these shots prior and is ready to execute them when the situation presents itself.
Don’t forget to head over to the practice green to make some practice putts and chips. Getting a feel for the speed of the greens and seeing how the ball is reacting around the greens is critical. At this time, I also like to let my mind focus on the game that I am about to play. Trying to treat each practice stroke as if it were taking place on the course will allow you mentally to prepare for the round.
So, if you can allow enough time for a routine to prepare for all aspects of the game, I know you will start to play better golf.