Nelly Korda and Sei Young Kim are ranked number three and four in the world respectively. Both are champions coming into the KPMG PGA Championship. Nelly just won this past weekend at the Meijer LPGA Classic and Kim is the defending champion of this week’s major championship.
Combined, these two have 315 birdies and 11 eagles on tour. That sounds outrageous, but together they have already scored 34 rounds in the 60’s in 2021.
The Atlanta Athletic Club is the host of the KPMG PGA Championship. Known for hosting major championships, this wonderful facility just outside of Atlanta is one difficult course to navigate. The Highlands course has previously hosted five major championships and this week will be the sixth. A mammoth course, the winners at this venue have always been very well-rounded players.
Nelly Korda is the first player with two wins on the LPGA Tour in 2021. She is ranked 10th in driving distance, 26th in hitting greens and 8th in putting. This is a great blueprint for possessing a very balanced skillset. The defending champion Kim has a similar accomplished approach. In the same categories, she ranks near the top of the tour (17th driving, 18th greens, 23rd putting). As fans and players, it’s important to ask how these world-class players become so well-versed at all aspects of the game.
It comes down to practice. Great players like these two ladies ranked in the Top 5 in the world practice with a purpose. Similarly, PGA Coaches build player development programs for their students all over the world. Developing and then staying with a specific practice regimen is so important to reaching your goals in golf.
Keep track of time. We are all guilty of practicing random skills for different amounts of time on different days. Every other sport has scheduled practice and so should you. Setting time limits for full swing or sand practice will create more real course pressure. Make a practice schedule and stick to it.
Don’t react with your practice schedule. Keep it defined and well-rounded. Just because you had zero sand saves over the weekend doesn’t imply you need to add in sixty minutes of bunker practice. A solid fundamental plan will cover all aspects of the game. Stick to it, never react.
Don’t overdo it. Manage a successful schedule you can handle. Place the proper amount of time and emphasis on all aspects of your game. Don’t get greedy, manage your expectations. Thirty extra minutes of practice doesn’t mean you will get thirty minutes better if you cannot stay with it. Work with a PGA Coach to develop a successful strategy.
Golf like every other sport is a game. Other sports utilize play in their practice regimen. Half-court competition, six-a-side football, etc. Follow their lead and plan for play in your routine. Get on the course and test your skillset.
We can all learn from watching the ladies this week. Their poise under pressure sets a tremendous example for our own improvement. Their self-confidence during the round comes from knowing they practiced with purpose. Take a look at your routine and consider the KPMG method. With a little structure, you will soon find your game can produce like Korda and Kim.