Looking to Improve? Take your Game on the Road
By Keith Stewart, PGA
Most golfers play the same course all the time. As a result, we tend to plateau in our playing ability. One of the reasons that a touring professional is that much better than your resident club champion is they play different places all the time. If you are looking to improve in 2022, maybe it is time to be less myopic in your approach.
New challenges and opportunities exist outside the current confines of your normal course. Believe it or not, a golf trip can be that experience needed to get better. The challenge of hitting the same old shots with different wind conditions or penalty areas to consider will positively push you. What if you spent a couple days just focused on your game? Or my favorite, register to play away locally. Here’s a couple specific ways a day(s) away might just be the key in 2022 to playing your best golf ever!
Your golf game is built around the courses you play all the time.
When you plan your next (or first) golf travel excursion, select a destination where the golf is totally different. There are a couple great reasons why. First, it will be a great new experience in playing the game. Second, it will challenge you to approach the game differently. Play in the desert and view the stark contrast between the velvety green grass and the barren yellow sandy landscape.
Try a coastline destination and play through some truly windy conditions. Face a course with water everywhere or take your game to new heights by playing at elevation. Golf presents so many new and exciting opportunities to test your game. By walking away from your comfort zone and hitting successful shots, you won’t believe the difference it will make in your confidence overall.
Golf schools and academies are a great experience.
Much like the first tee shot of the day people approach them with apprehension, but they always walk away with a huge smile on their face. When was the last time you spent 2 or 3 days with a PGA Coach just focusing on all aspects of your game? For 90% of you the answer is never. Pick a wonderful travel destination and it is guaranteed to have a great golf academy nearby. From the Caribbean to Canada and everywhere in between golf schools are abundantly there.
The best part about attending a golf school is that you play a lot of golf. Although you will spend some time on the practice tee, all of them take great pride in getting you on course as well.
From the lesson tee to the first tee is the best way to get better. Test that newly acquired knowledge and cement some confidence in your game enhancements.
If a trip isn’t in the cards for the coming months, here’s another option.
Sign up for an event taking place at a course you don’t know near you. It doesn’t have to be an official tournament, how about supporting a local charity in an outing? Force yourself to play outside your usual surroundings. In doing so, you may practice a little more. You’ll be tested on a new layout. Those two factors and more will cause you to get better.
We all know golf is a funny game. By investing in playing away from your normal routine, we quickly find ways to improve. The beauty of this strategy is that you may not have tried it before. Don’t let 2022 be the same old plateau season again. Start the year off with a quick trip to a different course. In doing so, the inspiration and confidence you receive in return will benefit your game immensely going forward.