Thursday, January 12, 2012

Golf's Dirty Secret On Saving Strokes

Golf's Dirty Secret On Saving Strokes
By Sean Mysel - "CrossGolfDude"
Golf's Dirty Secret On Saving Strokes1/12/12

Ever wanted to save strokes on your game?  Of course what a ridiculous question to ask, but with all the gimmicks, gizmos and gadgets promising lower scores there's one sure fire way to cut strokes off your game.  It's call Course Management.  What is Course Management?  Simply stated its playing the golf course with a plan where you script out every shot whether it's what club to play, what type of shot, where to land, etc.

Before you hit the first tee, it's helpful to understand what you're strengths and weaknesses are.  For instance, let's say you play your irons like a tour pro but you hit your woods as straight as a frat boy walks after a weekend party, it may be best to play conservatively with those clubs.  Here's a great example of how this works.  At my home course at Roddy Ranch Golf Club in Antioch, there's the 4th hole where you have a tee shot that flies into a fairway that runs perpendicular to the tee box from left to right.  You have Out of Bounds on the right and hills running along side the left of the fairway.  There are fairway bunkers approximately 200 yards from the tee box.  I tend to hit my driver with a draw so the out of bounds isn't a huge concern, I can fly the ball about 250 yards most of the time so I take dead aim at the green and the ball stops in front of a cart path 70 yards short of the green.  For me it's a full lob wedge onto the green.

There other examples as well.  For instance, my course has very, very hard greens so I always try to leave the ball short of the hole so that I can putt uphill which is easier for me to handle.  On the other hand, there's shots I  have a bit more trouble with, like holes that favor a fade rather than a draw.  Whatever your shot patterns and distances, play the course conservatively so you can do as Dr. Bob Rotella says, "swing cocky".  While there are many ways to save strokes on the course like lessons, equipment and training aids, just using the three inches between your ears is one of the best ways to accomplish this.