How can we create this feeling of progress? The answer starts by learning to warm up properly each time you practice. You’ll need a checklist. You need to start where you started yesterday. To skip a step, or all of the steps, is to invite frustration. Get back to where you were yesterday, then add a little more today. This is true progress, and the key to motivation.
STEP 1: As a part of a warm-up routine, remember to warm up your body first. Having a full range of motion, and the muscles warmed-up becomes a big part of creating consistency in your swing.
STEP 2: Establish posture. Making sure your posture is consistent, and fits you increases your chances for consistency and distance.
STEP 3: Putting and chipping. Learning how to roll the ball with a putter is the beginning of learning a center-face hit with every club in your bag. Chipping further develops the center-face hits, while allowing the ball to get into the air – the start of your training the full swing. As soon as you start hitting balls with a full swing, set-up a practice station marking your foot line, and a line to start the ball down. You can use aiming sticks, or a club laid on the ground. Now continue with your warm routine – focusing on feeling path and face, relative to a line.
STEP 4: Feel the club face. Hold the club face in your in left hand, and then your right. Imagine hitting with different lofts and angles.
STEP 5: Practice trying to make the ball go straight, draw and fade – without a target in mind.
STEP 6: Make the ball go in the correct direction, with the correct curve. Find the type of shot – a direction, and a curve – that you have the most control over.
STEP 7: Work your way up through your set of clubs.
STEP 8: Play with what you have that day.
STEP 9: Evaluate your day. What do you need to work on before you play next time.
Warming Up is the Key to Progress
by Mike Malask, PGA Director of Instruction @ Superstition Mountain Golf & CC,Superstition Mtn., AZ & Las Sendas Golf Club, Mesa, AZ