3. ON COURSE STRATEGY

 

Here's a reminder of fundamental number 3:

  •  On Course Strategy - how to plot your way around the golf course and lower your scores, based on your ability

Jack Nicklaus famously said, "The best way to cope with trouble is to stay out of it as much as possible."

 

Ben Hogan said, "The most important shot in golf is the next one."

 

Dr. Bob Rotella, the eminent golf psychologist, has said, "Hit the shot you know you can hit, not the one you think you should."

 

As the quotes above illustrate,  your on course strategy is also intrinsically linked to my 4th fundamental, Mind over golf. 

Plotting your way around the golf course, based on your ability to hit certain shots and to evaluate the danger from the tee box is the best way for you to lower your scores. Here are some considerations you may want to bear in mind. The following examples are a clue as to what should be done in these situations:

  • From the tee: where is the danger in relation to where my stock drive will finish up in terms of distance? Which side of the fairway should I be, in relation to pin position? For example, if I hit a 4 iron from this tee, could I still reach the green with my 8 iron, so do I even need to use driver?
  • From the fairway: what club do I need? What is the wind direction? Uphill/downhill to green? For example, the wind is against, but how strong is it? I normally hit 7 iron from this distance, should I use a 6 iron or might I even need a 5 iron?
  • From the rough: can I realistically reach the green with this lie? Are those tree branches in range with this club? For example, the ball is sitting down in the rough but to reach the green I would need a fairway wood or long iron. Should I hit a 9 iron back into the fairway to my favourite distance and take my chances from there?
  • From around the green: what is my lie like? Where is the pin in relation to where my ball lies? Can I aim directly at the pin with my ball under the lip of this bunker? For example, I have short sighted myself, can I play a flop shot from this bare lie over the bunker? Or, should I play the percentage leaving myself a 15 foot putt by chipping towards a danger free part of the green?
  • On the green: uphill or downhill? What side slopes do I need to consider? For example, can I realistically go for the hole aggressively? Or, should I make sure I get off this green with a stress free tap in?

There are many questions you need to ask yourself throughout  18 holes of golf. This unique online golf coaching experience will also ensure you have a clear strategy before you start your round. Therefore, you will always make better decisions on the golf course.

 

Karl Knight 

Oliva Nova Golf, Spain