The Biggest Stroke Saver In Golf

How often can the topic of saving strokes be covered? I realize that many pundits are trying to find, develop, and sell the next best thing to quickly lower your golf score. I understand that some training aids are helpful (I have a few my self) however, to ensure you are focused on the proper area for your game, there is one rule of thumb every aspiring golfer should follow. And I mean every golfer!

I am not sure where I read this valuable piece of information, but I have followed it (in most cases unintentionally) for about 25 years. Someone mentioned it again recently and I cannot find the source. I apologize for that. The premise to lowering our golf scores is this:

Practice shots by focusing your practice time from the center of the green and working your way back to the tee box.

I believe and follow this statement always. I focus most of my practice time on chipping and putting (hence my DIY indoor hitting area and chipping area); in fact I start months before the snow disappears honing my short game so I can hit the golf course with much of my off-season rust knocked off.

Putting in 2018

I also practice my putting for most of the winter in my basement. I take the time every other day to practice with the flat stick. This club, above all others, is the ultimate stroke saver! In fact, it was so important that in 2018 when going through cancer treatments I brought my putting gear into the hospital.

Of course, putting in the hospital was as more about mental health than my golf game, but I think you get the point.

In 2020, despite the crazy start to the golf season, I practice chip shots from 25 to 50 yards almost every day. It allowed my to hone this distance and I can say that this specific practice help save strokes around the green.

Working outwards was a bit of a challenge this year because my local driving range was closed. So, that area of my game did not receive as much attention as I had intended. However, that was a limitation to my 2020 golf season. The DIY driving net helped, but it was not really the same as watching my ball flight on the range.

Lastly, I focus on my driving. There is a twofold reason for this; first, I have a very high success rate of keeping the ball in play off the tee. Second, I have a very high success rate off the tee! 😉 Because my driver is one of the most reliable clubs in my bag, I do not spend a great deal of time hitting balls with the big stick. Additionally, I have not changed how I hit my driver in years, thus my swing is pretty grooved. That may change this year as I try to add about 20 yards to my driver in the off season, but we shall see because that is not decided yet.

I think you understand the main theme of my article. To lower your golf score, all golfers should focus their practice time from the green outwards. Of course, all areas should be worked on, but the time allotment will vary depending on your skill level at each distance. That is something you need to decide for yourself. But, starting from the center of the green and working outwards is an absolute must.

How do you allot your practice time?

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

6 thoughts on “The Biggest Stroke Saver In Golf

  1. Jim, you nailed it. Get out and work on your short game. The professional I try to emulate with my practice is Dustin Johnson. It’s amazing how few drivers he hits and how much attention he pays to his wedge game. Can’t argue with his results.

    I’d say that the lower your handicap goes, the more time you should spend working short game. I devote about 75% of my time on and around the practice green.

    Thanks!

    Brian

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Looking good with the flat stick! I also like to start on short game before hitting longer clubs. Great chat to set my winter routine upon arrival back to Canada’s winter. Kirk

    Liked by 1 person

  3. All true. I got very little from the hundreds of hours at the range I put in years ago. There was nothing focused about what I was doing and I spent far too much time with the clubs I already hit the best. And worse, I ingrained bad habits. It’s one of my life’s if only’s. If only I’d had the foresight to understand how addictive the game was. I’d have either stopped before I started, or done it right and gotten instruction right from the start. I could not only have learned how to swing better, but learned how to practice effectively much sooner.

    Liked by 1 person

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