Playing on a Familiar Golf Course

Are you a member at a golf course? Have you played there for years? If so, then you might unwittingly be a victim of your own familiarity. Yes, that is right; If you are not careful, playing the same course most of the time is not good for your golf game! Familiarity breeds complacency, sloppy course management, and the “I have always played this hole this way” attitude. All of which results in high scores and a tendency to accept mediocrity!

You may be thinking that I am being a bit harsh, however I have fell victim the above mentioned traps and continually work at not playing the same club, on the same hole, all the time.

Yesterday’s round of golf was a perfect example. On the 13th hole, I normally play a 3 wood. It is the right choice because a well hit ball leaves 120 yards out (one of my ideal distances for approach shots), a poorly hit ball leaves 140 yards to the pin. Logic says to hit the 3 wood all the time. In years past, I would hit the a 3 wood without hesitation, but not now. With the wind in our face and the tee pushed back a bit on the tee box, my normal club would leave farther back, thus making my approach shot more difficult. So, I hit my driver (best one of the day actually) and was left with 105 yards to the pin.

I focus on letting course conditions, weather, personal play, and the unknown drive my course management. However, I do fall into the trap our routine sometimes. It sometimes costs me and others saves me, yet it is not the way I like to play golf. Every round should represent its own challenges that I want to analyse and conclude the best solution for at that moment.

Whether joking or not, I am a bit concerned with the 19% of respondents who do not manage their round of golf. Regardless of skill level, course management is important to learn early in a player’s career. Sometimes it is as simple as avoiding the water hazard with their 6th shot, but at least they are starting to think.

So I return to my original premise: you might unwittingly be a victim of your own familiarity. The next time you play a round of golf at your home course, consider whether you club selection is because of routine or actual course management. You might be surprised by the answer.

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


4 thoughts on “Playing on a Familiar Golf Course

  1. Jim, excellent points. We know familiarity breeds contempt and sometimes it’s best to change things up, as you did on the tee, to stay fresh. I would also suspect your 19% is under-reported. Most folks may think they are managing their games but they don’t; at least to the level of where they should.



    Liked by 1 person

  2. I guess I can see that. My counterpoint would be that playing the same course over and over for a time will help you learn your course better and possibly help you see nuances on new courses easier. I guess the possibility of getting in a rut is there, but I think that is true no matter what anyway. Seeing the subtleties usually comes easier with familiarity. And once you’ve found them on one course, they should be easier to see when you go somewhere new. I guess the key is don’t allow your game to get in a rut no matter where you play.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kevin

      Good point. However, a player must stay in the moment and focused to stay on top of their game on their home course. In my experience, this is not the case for many. Great points and thanks for adding to the conversation.



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