Why do so many Golfers have trouble taking their driving range swing onto the golf course? What is happening differently on the golf course where you don’t hit the golf ball nearly as straight as you did on the range?
The most obvious answer could be that on the driving range you have less pressure to hit a good shot because there are many other golf balls to progressively correct yourself after hitting a bad shot. Whereas on the golf course … there is only one golf ball that matters.
Now this simple fact could negatively affect your golf swing on the course as the pressure to execute gets heightened.
If this is you … don’t fret, as you’re not the lone person with this affliction. We often talk with Golfers that tell us that on the driving range they’re able to hit their Driver “straight most of the time, but when I get on the golf course … all I can do is slice!”
What correction should this Golfer practice on the driving range?
When standing on the practice range – I believe the Golfer needs to know the difference between preparing your golf swing for the golf course … as opposed to just hitting golf balls and thinking you are practicing. These frustrated Golfers are basically just hitting golf balls under the false impression they are practicing to improve their golf swing.
When I watch the vast majority of Golfers at the range hitting golf ball after golf ball — it’s pretty much like going to the health club and watching people run on the treadmill. While their body is making movements … they’re not going anywhere … they pretty much finish where they started.
To see what I mean, go to the range one day and do what I do … just sit down and watch people hit golf balls. And as you scan the crowd, see if you can find someone that is practicing. Not just hitting golf balls … but search to see if you can see someone practicing to be able to take their swing onto the golf course.
When you do spot a Player preparing their golf swing so that it is ready for the golf course … you will know it. As he/she will be the Golfer that walks behind their golf ball on almost every shot to visualize their target, as well as create the visual of an actual golf course with water, trees, sand, etc. They may even stay behind the golf ball for a few extra seconds to practice a drill or “feel” something in their swing.
Whereas the typical Golfer is doing what? C’mon, you know what they’re doing. They’re just hitting golf ball after golf ball after golf ball – thinking they’re practicing. Yet all they’re doing is creating a false sense that their swing is getting better.
Practice is not solely about hitting golf balls. Practice is about preparing for the golf course so that your golf swing is ready when it comes down to hitting just one golf ball while avoiding Danger Zones. How many Danger Zones are there on the driving range?
Think about another reason why just hitting golf balls is not practice: one of the biggest flaws Golfers have is that when you’re hitting golf balls … you’re doing it at your own pace. You hit a golf ball, then you can hit your next golf ball as soon as you would like. There’s no waiting. You control your pace.
Thus, it’s easy to reproduce a smooth rhythmic golf swing each swing as you’re in control. Yet on the golf course you lose that smooth, effortless pace of swing … why?
On the golf course … other Golfers control your pace. You hit when it’s your turn. It’s not the ‘hit a golf ball, hit a golf ball, hit a golf ball’ pace you have at the driving range. It’s ‘hit a golf ball … wait 2 minutes until it’s my turn again, hit a golf ball … wait, hit a golf ball … wait’. And the pace you play is not limited to just your group. The group in front of you playing slow, as well as the group behind you waiting for you to hit also controls your pace.
Even if you’re on the golf course playing by yourself. You hit a golf ball and then you have to walk/drive to it. But there is always going to be at least a 30 second hiatus between shots.
So if you know the golf course is going to be like this every time you play … why wouldn’t you practice hitting golf balls at a similar pace?
And someone will say: “30 seconds? What am I supposed to do in those 30 seconds?” Well come to one of our Level 1.5 Classes … as we institute the 30 second rule on each shot. And you’ll discover what you should be doing in between shots … and identify how to better take your golf swing to the course.
What is practice? What should you be practicing?
Hitting golf ball after golf ball isn’t practice. Yet, that’s all that you see other Golfers doing … so that’s what you assume you’re supposed to do. So I understand if that’s what you do.
But, by practicing this way … you’re making the gap wider and wider between what you do on the driving range and what you do on the golf course.
Practicing your golf swing needs to involve much more than just practicing turning your shoulders or shifting your weight. The best Players know this … that’s why they can take their swing from the driving range to the golf course!
The Monkey thinks they’re practicing because they’re hitting golf balls
The Player is preparing his/her golf swing for the golf course
Go ahead … Be A Player!
Marc Solomon – Your Instructor For Life