Golf is a frustrating game. How about that for a sentence? Just because it’s obvious doesn’t make it any less true. The frustration builds exponentially. A bad shot here leads to a bad shot there. You might hit the skinniest branch on a tree. You might lip out a putt or two. That slice that you eradicated months ago will make an appearance at an inopportune time. It all adds up to Mark Twain’s famous quote, “Golf is a good walk ruined.”
But it’s not just bad luck or perceived bad luck that adds to the frustration associated with the game. It’s the habit of showing up to the course every day and not getting any better. Let’s call it the wall. Every golfer hits one at least once a summer. Too often we try to beat through that wall rather than climb over it, or better yet, walk around.
USGolfTV’s “In The Classroom” series by Todd Kolb is meant to simplify the game in a way that both makes sense and is easily applicable, help us get over and around our walls. Consider this short video on “Shot Pattern“. It’s a concept that should be obvious to even the most casual golfer: one’s ball flight has trends, and we should be observant to those trends to give ourself the best odds of success.
Todd, in this video, helps us the viewers understand that pattern and use it to our advantage. Don’t aim for the flagstick, he says, but rather to a place that will ensure the ball will land close to the hole based on your individual shot pattern.
It’s a simple thought. It’s an obvious thought. And yet it can knock five to six strokes off your round. It can help prevent the dreaded blowup hole. It can make the difference between shooting 91 and breaking 90.
You’ll often hear someone say “don’t think too much” when it comes to golf. I think that’s poor advice, not because it’s wrong but because it carries the implication that you shouldn’t think at all. You should think. Just think the right things.
Shot Pattern is certainly one of those things. If you play the course with the shots that you have and not the shots that you want, you’ll see the improvement that you crave. The frustration will remain, but now you’ll have the tools to work through it.