How to Lower Your Golf Handicap in the Next Year

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Whether you’re an avid golfer who has been playing for years or someone new to the sport who’d love to make it a regular activity, you’re sure to want to improve your golf game as quickly as possible.

While you may not turn into the next Tiger Woods overnight, there are many strategies you can employ to lower your golf handicap and feel better about your golf game by this time next year.

Practice

One of the best ways to become a better golfer is to practice regularly. A key part of this is getting yourself to a course as often as you can, but make sure you also spend plenty of time at the range. Doing this will help you find your groove. It’s also necessary to practice putting, which is something you can do at home if you can’t find the time to get to a course or park frequently.

Something else you can do at home to boost your number of practice sessions is to take practice swings with a club. You only need enough space to move the club freely, such as in a backyard or a large living room. Taking 100 swings a day will help you build a repeatable motion and improve your awareness of where the club is in all positions.

Plan

Practicing is necessary, as mentioned above, but you also need to make sure you do things with a purpose. Set goals for yourself, not just for the year but also for each quarter and month. This will help you stay on track and ensure you keep making progress.

Regarding time spent at the range and on the golf course, come prepared with a plan of attack. Decide in advance how many balls you’re going to hit, what outcome you’re after, which target you’re aiming for, which clubs you want to get more familiar with, which part of your swing you want to focus on, etc. Also, mix up your golfing time at different courses and in different conditions, so you keep challenging yourself and learning new things.

Part of your planning should also include noting your game stats at the beginning of your golfing life. Then, continue to keep track of this data as time goes on. Only through analyzing your game will you be able to see all the small improvements you make. Doing this will keep you motivated during the crucial learning stages.

Get Some Assistance

You can learn a lot from books, blogs, videos, etc. as well as by watching other people play golf. However, one of the best ways to improve is to get some real-world assistance from a professional. Have someone give you helpful feedback on your current stance, grip, swing and other basics, so you know what you’re doing well and what you need to concentrate on fixing. It’s incredibly hard to pick up on issues alone, so it pays to have someone else there to provide advice and ensure we don’t end up cementing bad habits.

You could get lessons from a coach at your local golf club, hire a professional to guide you and a group of other novices on a day or week-long course or attend an adult golf camp to learn tips and tricks via a more intensive program. The method you choose comes down to your preferences, budget and availability, but the sooner you get some assistance, the better.

Improve Your Health

You can build your golfing skill set and knowledge, but unless your body can handle the activity, you’ll never lower your golf handicap to the score you want. As such, over the coming year, focus on your health. Work to improve your fitness, range of motion and balance, as these three things are vital to golfers of all ages and abilities.

You should also work on your mindset, as golf is such a mental game. Learn how to breathe through frustrations on the course and how to visualize where you want the ball to go. Fuel your body correctly, too, especially before you play full courses, so you have the right kind of energy to power through and perform.

Golf is a wonderful game that will keep you on your toes, physically and mentally. To keep your love for the game alive, it helps to improve continuously and get to a point where you feel confident in your skills and have the ability to relax into your time on the course. Follow the steps listed above, and you should soon see excellent results.

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