Rely on What You Know

I hit thousands of golf shots every year. I wish I could say that every one of these shots was perfectly executed. Unfortunately, as everyone reading can attest, a percentage….in my case a very small percentage 😉 of these shots left me in less than desirable locations.

As a result, I had to invent or envision a shot I never practiced. This attempt at making a shot for the first time was challenging and sometimes very nerve-wracking. But, it is part of the game and something every golfer should embrace. So how do we make these first-time shots? What is the thought process behind being successful?

My approach to making these shots is very straight forward. It is not difficult and is quantifiable. I have honed this step-by-step process through trial and error. It works for me and maybe it will work for you.


Despite what you think, it what works for me may not work for you. You will have to own this process and adapt and modify to suit your needs. So here it goes:

  • look at the lie of the ball;
  • check my yardage to where I want to land the ball;
  • check to see if the wind will affect my gall flight;
  • check the elevation of the green;
  • check the location of the pin;
  • choose my aiming target;
  • select my club;
  • stand over my ball;
  • take one practice swing;
  • move to 3 steps behind my ball;
  • look at my ball – then my target;
  • draw a mental line from my ball to my target;
  • focus on the trajectory I need;
  • return to the ball; then
  • execute my shot.

This process is the same every time I am attempting a new shot. Actually, it is the same every time I make any shot. It is ‘my’ proven pre-shot routine that never lets me down. Basically, when faced with new and old challenges, I rely on what I know! I rely on a process I have grooved over years of trail and error with positive results.

When in doubt, I always default to shots I know I execute!

Do you rely on what you know when you golf?

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

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