How often do you hear people say, “I can’t believe how badly I played when I practiced so well the other day” or “Yesterday I played 9 holes under my handicap, but today in the comp I didn’t get within 10 of it”

It’s obviously more difficult when you’re in a competitive situation but people are not often well prepared.

Make Practice Harder

The biggest problem is that when you are on the practice tee or your having some practice on the course there is no consequence. So if you hit a bad shot it doesn’t matter, therefore you don’t have the same mindset.  If you had the mindset that every shot counts when you are practicing you will start to condition the mental strength of a tour professional.

Imagine this, if you had to train to fight someone in a boxing match would you rather train with Mike Tyson or a friend of yours?  Well I know I would rather train with a friend, as it would be a lot easier!  Imagine how hard your training would be with Iron Mike Tyson, but from that imagine what the demanding daily training would do for you when it came to fight night? You would be much more prepared to fight; all because you’re training was harder than your actual fight.

With this imagine if you where to practice hitting drives to a 7 yard gap on the practice tee! Chip shots out of the worst possible lies!  Kicking your ball into the trees on a practice round and dealing with the result.  Suddenly you are starting to train like tour pro and you are conditioning mental toughness that is going stand you in good stead.

So next time you go to practice be imaginative, hit ten shots between targets only 7 yards wide!  When you are on the course if your ball misses the fairway only allow yourself to chip it back on the fairway!  Play 2 balls off the tee and then play your worst shot!

By using your imagination and making your practice harder than your play, your competitive rounds will start to feel a lot easier.

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  1. Alex Muller

    I recently read “Golf Is Not A Game Of Perfect” by Bob Rotella and I already changed my way of training based on the book. I pick targets for every shot on the range (crazy that I didnt before…) and…

    1. Piers Ward

      All of Bob Rotellas work is very good Alex.

      By pulling the left foot back in your stance and opening it your right it doesn’t suggest that it should eliminate the slice. Similar to the make prac…

  2. Russ Sedat

    This is good info. I have recently begun to give myself terrible lies at my local short game areas in and around San Clemente, CA. This has improved my shots immensely. I also give each shot a grad…

    1. Piers Ward

      Brilliant ideas Russ. Keeping a record of your scores when practicing and this will give you even greater feedback and will also boost your confidence if scores keep getting better. #TakeCharge

  3. Brendan Wright

    Great post guys & certainly all good points.
    Any tips for playing out 18 holes consistently though? Always on the back 9 I have 1 or 2 bad holes.
    Im a fit young guy, so its not as though I ‘run’…

    1. Piers Ward

      Hi Brendan thanks for your comment. If your struggling on the back 9 have a go at these 3 things.

      1. Try this practice session – hit 14 tee shots to your 7 yard fairway but if you miss your target…

  4. corey.k

    This is so true. And a great article. I recently purchased a set of clubs after getting back from overseas. Heading out to the range for the first time in 4 years is like starting all over again. I ha…

    1. Piers Ward

      Hi Corey thank you for your comment. Firstly great to hear you are getting back into the game.
      If you are a right handed golfer and the golf ball is slicing to the right, swinging to the left will m…