Game Improvement at a Higher Level

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Getting to the point where you can break 90 easily comes with practice and consistent play.  That’s a simple look at it.  Dig deep into the idea of fixing your golf game for better scores and more fun.  Dig deeper and you will discover that breaking 90 will take more out the high handicapper than just showing up and teeing it up for a round of 18 holes every weekend.

“Play your own game.” – Harvey Penick

 

Fix Your Flaws

Your game will not improve without making some changes.  The things that need improvement usually take away from the game being fun.  You know what should happen, but you just don’t seem to have that execution down yet.

That needs fixing.  You have to fix your flaws.

I love to research different golf publications that can help.  Some of my go-to reads include:

These usually give you tips and exercises on game improvement as well as equipment and product reviews that span from golf shoes to golf equipment.

Find the Right Strokes and Shots

You have to add a little bit of finesse to your game.  You have to add some focus as well.  You also need to add the right shot selection for the present opportunity.  That means taking into account the course and the conditions as well as the lie of the ball and how well or poorly you have been playing so far and similar situations.

Some folks might recall me sharing about the infamous flop shot and how mastery of it does not come easily.  When you are struggling and scrambling to keep up with the rest of your foursome, that is not the time try out some new shot or swig technique that you caught a glimpse of while watching YouTube.

Find what works for you and keep a running mental file of which shots work best in which types of situations.  Refer to these when you are considering your options.  Rely on these when you have very few options before you.  High quality equipment and gear play a role in golf, but they do not outweigh shot selection as a core element of game improvement.  Your shot selection is highly import and has an impact on improving your game.

Play Strategically

Take on All Kinds of Challenges

Many people have a “home course” or some course that they play often.  What that really means is that they play that course frequently.  In many cases, they can run down the specifics of each and every hole as if they were asked to recite the ABC’s.  The problem with home course mentality is applicable to maintaining one’s game, not necessarily improving one’s game with challenges found in different courses.

Your game cannot improve without some challenges being faced and conquered.  That is where the improvement comes into play.

GolfEtail.comin to improve your game, the challenges faced must take you to different aspects where your game is not at its best.  That’s when you have to start improving via innovation and intuition.  If you do not do well on par 3;s, play a full 18 hole par 3 course.  They do exist, you know.

Your game will not improve just by research and swing analysis.  You need to put together a plan that will both challenge and help change your previous knowledge.  Your biggest hack for your game might come in the form of learning how to conquer your challenges.

When Fitness Friday is a Flop

Some days work out better than others.  That’s just a fact.

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Fitness Fridays Require Focus (Even After They Fail & Flop)

I try to spend my Fridays with a focus on fitness.  Like I shared previously, fitness for the fairway makes a huge difference in your game.  Strength training, nutrition and some yoga or basic stretching can help make a difference in your scorecard.

Some Fridays that doesn’t happen.  It just doesn’t work out.

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Flop Shots and Inconsistency

It goes sort of like that flop shot that every golfer seems to flip out about mastering.  As much as golf pros and swing coaches might suggest ditching the lob wedge in lieu of a gap wedge or alt wedge, it still sits in the bag.  We still try to force ourselves to emulate or rather imitate what we see Lefty pull off from the fringe.  We consider it working on our short game and fight to master a flop with finesse.

I have yet to see it work out.  Its infrequent and inconsistent success keeps me chipping with my other wedges and 9 iron more consistently rather than taking the risk of yips taking over as I overthink what should be a simple and routine shot.  I would rather face a shot with consistency and confidence.  I would even putt it from the fringe if the lie is right and I can see the possibility of getting a good line at the hole.  That beats out the possibility and potential of a flop from the fringe every time.

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Focus on Fixing What You Can Fix

So, when it comes to my Fitness Fridays, I sometimes lose focus or even miss the opportunity.  I make the mistake of not getting in enough protein.  I skip a meal or commit some other fitness cardinal sin.  It turns out like that flop shot.

When your fitness focus flops, be sure to set up a comeback.   Do not beat yourself up too much.  You just need to refocus and get back at it to get back on track.

Comeback Commitment

  • Talk yourself out of doubt.  Your self-talk will make a difference in your success.
  • Spend some time making a commitment to your fitness and nutrition regimen.
  • Set some simple and attainable goals.  Think SMART goals.
  • Work on working in some makeup days in your weekly routine.
  • Meal plan and meal prep ahead of time, not the morning of or on the fly.
  • Keep a journal or diary of your fitness journey.  Include workouts and meals, even results from weigh-ins.
  • Get an accountability partner to keep you honest and supported.

Your success is about long term results.  Such success is achieved through commitment and consistency.  You can change the course of your own success by making some changes along the way.

Think about it.  Your golf round is not summed up by your worst par 3 hole.  It is the culmination of all 18 holes.  Approach your fitness plan the same way.

I want to make my Fitness Fridays more successful.  I want to see a change in my strength and shape, even my weight.  I cannot achieve it if I stay in the dumps about what one day that did not work out.  I have more to achieve and I need to spend some time making sure that I focus on how to fix it when it flops.

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Now that flop shot? I think I will spend some time working on it here and there, but I doubt if it ever becomes one of my go-to shots that I would rely on in pinch.  I will treat it like the days when my fitness focus does not work out.  I will simply take a step back analyze what worked and what didn’t work, and then I will shove that lob wedge back in my bag and take a sure shot that I feel more confident about each round.

Fitness Fixes to the Fairway

I need to lose weight.

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If I am going to break 90 consistently, dropping pounds and improving strength and stamina are definitely necessities.  Otherwise, my golf game will be so inconsistent it will become unpredictable.

I started a regular fitness regimen a few years ago and it has been beneficial.  I walk.  I run and jog.  I play hoops.  I lift weights.  I hit up the cardio classes at 24 Hour Fitness on the weekends.  And I need to keep losing weight and building up my strength and stamina.

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It helps with my overall health and wellness.

It also helps with my golf game.

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Some time back, I found it difficult to walk a par 3 18-hole course.  Heck, I could hardly handle a 9-hole with over 6 clubs in my bag at  that time.  It was all about a cart or no deal.

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Nowadays I can walk that 18 hole par 3 course.  I prefer mornings myself.  There is something about that fresh cut grass smell in the air and the frost coming off the greens to make them slightly slick in the right (and wrong) places.  It also serves as a major step count boost, especially if you get 18 holes out of the way early in the day.

My fitness level improves my ability to have a strong game.

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Consider the following items to fix your fitness for the fairway:

  • Nutrition: Check out your diet; what you take in day by day, meal after meal.  Track meals and manage your diet based on your weight and other health goals.
  • Exercise: Get moving daily.  Get those step in day after day.  Join a run club or a fitness center.  Walk at the local park.  Just get up and get motivated to get moving.  The heaviest thing you lift should not be your golf bag.
  • Rest: I used to not give this any credit, sleeping 4 to 5 hours per night and wondering why my immune system would shut down on me every so often.  Duh!! I average 6.5 to 7 hours now.  I even cut off my snacking after 9 PM due to how it disrupted my sleep.  Like the commercial says: never underestimate a good night’s rest.
  • Stress Reduction: If you do not reduce your stress level soon, you will create a load of problems for yourself further down the road.  Stress disrupts your entire system.  Major and chronic illness is called disease.  In other words, your body system is NOT at ease.  From blood pressure and heart disease to anxiety and panic attacks, stress is a killer.  At the least, stress can kill a great foursome and a good round of golf.  Just ask your playing partners.

Make the most of your opportunities to stay fit.  Fix what you need to fix to get fit for the fairway.  It will show on your scorecard.  Your body will definitely thank you for it.

Styled for the Course

Breaking 90 is my goal.  That’s a given.

But beyond play, golf has a unique style of its own.

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Whether it’s Callaway, Titleist or Under Armour, I enjoy golf style both on and off the links.  Nike and Adidas golf gear rank up there, too.  Greg Norman has a style that I have always loved.  Ashworth used to be among my go-to brands, but things change over time.

 

I prefer a blend of both classic and bold styles.  I am not so much for all of the modern styles offered, but I definitely have dabbled with a few since I discovered golf subscription boxes like Short Par 4, Swing Society, Birdie Bundle and Swinger Box.  For bigger guys like me, some styles do not fit.

I love LinkSoul and all that it has to offer from hats to tee shirts and shorts.  Asher Golf and LinksStyle Golf  are among some of the brands I came to love through Swing Society and Birdie Bundle.  Travis Matthews and Matte Grey are a few of my favorites, too.

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Get discounted golf styles at the following links:

Short Par 4  http://i.refs.cc/eQB2wpz4

LinkSoul http://rwrd.io/fcijo6o

Birdie Bundle http://birdiebundle.refr.cc/brucej

17 Bogeys

The most important shot in golf is the next one.” – Ben Hogan

Breaking 90 is simple.

All it takes is 17 bogeys.

All you have to do is make 1 over par on 17 holes and make par on 1 hole.

Sounds simple. . .

But breaking 90 is not so easy if you do not play every other day or couple of days, or even every weekend.  Without consistent play, breaking 90 can seem like a massive endeavor.

This is simply a reflective look at how a high handicapper took on a simple challenge to document the process of breaking 90.  It is about setting goals and working on how to achieve set goals on a consistent basis.  It is a journey about accomplishment and activity.

Join me on this journey and let’s tee off.

 

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