What is the Strongest Part of Your Golf Game?

What is the strongest part of your golf game? Have you ever really sat down and gave this very important question any thought? Generally, we ask what is the weakest part of your game and many jump to that answer without hesitation. But, trying to ascertain the strongest part of our game is more challenging. It forces us to really examine our game and realize what we think is our strongest game is not. In case you are wondering, our strengths shift throughout the season and it is important to have a process to distinguish where to focus our practice and adjust our course management.

Before explaining my process, it is important to realize that being honest in your assessment is critical to understanding the strengths and weaknesses of your game. In this case, what are your strengths and how to use them. Here is what you had to say:

Currently, the strongest part of my game is;

  1. Irons. Specifically, my 5 iron to pitching wedge. At this time, I am hitting them pure and to yardage. Occasionally, I have a miss hit, but not bad enough to hurt my score.
  2. Driver. I am hitting the fairway 80% of the time with little fear of missing. If I do miss, it is left – not sure where the draw came from, but I am liking it.
  3. Sand Wedge. Of all my wedges, I am hitting this short iron the most consistent. I am especially confident from 60 yards.
  4. Gap and Lob Wedges. I am less confident with these clubs and have a tendency to try and help the ball. As a result, I come up considerably short.
  5. Putter. This is the worst club in my bag. I am fighting every movement and miss reading just about everything. It has cost me many strokes over the past month!

If you would have asked me this question at the beginning or in the middle of the season, this list would look different. The strengths of my game do shift, sometimes it is because of practice and other times because of confidence. Regardless, the scale is never stagnate. So, now I bet you are wondering how I come up with this list? Well, it is pretty straight forward and I think everyone could use it.

First, I examine and track the execution of my shots over 3 rounds. Sometimes more, but the minimum is 3 rounds. I use this number to accurately assess the strengths of my game. By using a sample group of 3 games, I am able see trends and hopefully, make adjustments to head off any mini slumps.

Second, using the same 3 rounds, how is my attitude during each shot. Am I dreading the shot, do I have the can’ts in my mind, or do I avoid using a certain club all together  and default to a club I am confident I can hit. This happens and it is frustrating because I am trying to manufacture a shot that I know is not the correct shot for the situation.

Last, how am I setting up my course management during a round. If I am unconsciously or consciously hitting shots to avoid using a specific club on the next shot, it tells me that the avoided club is not one of my strengths at that time. As an example, I will use a knock down pitching wedge instead of a full gap wedge. This decision has nothing to do with the better shot, but identifying a strength and a weakness.

The above 3 steps are critical to my ability to score well throughout the entire season. I continually focus on the strengths of my game and will play to those during rounds. It helps me keep most of my scores in the 70s. If I am able to apply my process properly, I can string together many low 70s scores. I have yet to break par this year (the first time in 4 years), but I am still confident I have a chance.

Do you analyse your game for its strengths throughout the year? If so, what is our system?

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

Written by Jim Burton at The Grateful Golfer blog.

7 thoughts on “What is the Strongest Part of Your Golf Game?

  1. Jim,

    Typically it is my iron play, but lately it has actually been my driver. With still getting over some injuries, I think picking it off of a tee rather than hitting it off the turf has been more appealing and doesn’t hurt the body as much, haha.

    Cheers
    Josh

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Jim,
    Normally, I’ll practice my weaknesses and play to my strengths; that has not changed. Like you, there is movement in my list and my thought process on improvement has changed. I’ve moved from a self-medicated approach to seeking professional instruction. It has helped a lot and now a previous weakness (wedge play inside 100 yards) is a strength.

    I still track GIR and putts in each round but last weekend, added a new stat for mental prep. For every shot played, I track if I’m 100% committed before I pull the trigger. I believe this will help my focus and it’s easy to work. Last round I was 71 for 74 which wasn’t bad but the three mental foibles cost me a bogey each time. There’s no reason not to be at 100% for this stat and it’s not tracking physical errors.

    So essentially, I’m trying to work the physical and mental sides of my game.

    Thanks!

    Brian

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  3. For me.
    1. Irons. Love my 3 off the tee. My 7 is a real buddy. It can clear the tallest of trees and still go 150-160 yards.
    2. Putter. I’m counting 3 putts per month and it seldom reaches half the game count. I’ve played and average of 8 times a month (with hurricane exceptions lol)
    3. Driver. I’ve lost some distance and my accuracy is off while I search for it again. I think I just really need to reshaft. The club was set up before my lesson, and not with my new set up, I just send the ball so high that I get negative rollout from plugging now.
    4. Wedges. These are getting better actually and I group them all together because I have the same problem with all. It was both distance and direction with the new set up, but now it’s just distance. I’m still guessing too much and getting it wrong. But I knew that would happen when I made the switch. All the shot types we hit with the wedges makes it take longer develop feel again. From the sand though I feel great. It works so much better now thanks to the lesson. My grip was the biggest change they made in my lesson btw.
    If this helps, my putter was terrible. Today it is so much better. And I did it all right at home. I had two putters, a mallet from Bobby Grace and a blade from Rossi. The mallet gave me problems with distance/speed control and the blade with direction. What helped me fix it was a year long process. It could have been faster but I started off with the losing putter. I have two holes on the carpet in the house and I’ve practiced my putting nightly. Sometimes just ten balls, sometimes as many as 50 or even more once in a while. I put 4 balls in each hole, then manually arrange them so I can try and roll a fifth up on top of the others. That gives me a little practice on distance control and takes real precision. I work mostly from 8 feet (my home office right next to my desk) but I sometimes take the holes out on my porch where I have up to 17 feet of room and even faster carpet.
    I worked with one putter, one grip, and one stance, one routine at a time. I practiced that all week, on both carpets, and then tried it on the course. Sometimes it was readily apparent it didn’t work so I would abandon it. Sometimes it took an extra week to be sure it was time to move on and make a change to one aspect or another. I first learned that what worked at home doesn’t necessarily work on the green and I just kept at it.
    In the end, I found a grip, stance, routine and club combo that worked in both environments pretty well. It still wasn’t quite right but I was feeling so much better. I was thinking the only way to go from there was a proper putter fitting. But after a few weeks of thinking about that, I decided there was one more thing I hadn’t tried. I didn’t have to live with the single dot Rossi had put on my blade putter for alignment purposes and I bought a jar of white paint, taped up the putter and added my own alignment line. I’ve been putting really good ever since. I still put in 60-100 putts a week at home to keep that confident feeling alive. It’s become part of my nightly routine and takes less than ten minutes unless I just want to do more. I think to get any better from here will just take a little more time putting on real greens. What I do now is repeatable and only subject to how I am reading the lie/speed that day.

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    • Kevin

      Thanks for the detailed acciut of your gzme. It is very helpful for others to realize tjat anaysis is important, but doing somethkng about it is more important. I like uour low tech solution to your putting problem. Most of the time simple is best.

      Cheers
      Jim

      Like

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