Expecting Your Golf Game to Improve

This is the time of year in my golf season where I expect my scores to start a downward trend. We are about six weeks late due to COVID, but that is not something that I lament on because it is out of my control. As I look forward, this is about the time in the season when the rust is mostly knocked off and I can rely on consistent play. This is nothing new for me as it happens every year. But, when should you expect your golf game to improve if you are taking steps to make changes. I bet inquiring minds want to know!

Interestingly, all the articles I searched for this topic focused on the how to improve your game, but when or how long it takes. If you ask a professional, the good ones at least, cannot offer a specific timeline because every player is different. We learn at different speeds; we have different physical skills; how much time we can dedicate to improving; or are we mentally prepared for the journey. The factors are unlimited and each player will have to do decide for themselves when their efforts will see improvements to their their game.

Taking a putting lesson

Well, I have a very simple answer to the question of when. It should be immediately! Wait, I have to caveat that slightly, immediately when your expectations overcome your fears and frustration to change. Sounds simple, right? Well, unfortunately it is very challenging and nothing is ever as simple as it seems.

The willingness to accept the good, bad and ugly results of a working through the processes of change is difficult for most golfers egos. Usually, most amateurs quit making adjustments after a very short time because they feel that improvement to their game is not happening fast enough. So they stop. What many players fail to recognize is the small success that demonstrate that they are actually improving their game.

Small success can manifest through shorter putts after a chip, fewer missed shots, longer distances off the tee, hitting the fairway more often, or just feeling more comfortable with their swing changes. Maybe they accrue fewer penalty strokes because they are hitting the ball a bit straighter. It is difficult to nail down the what minor successes will manifest for their game, but it will be there if they open their minds to the possibilities.

I will mention that as a golfer lowers their handicap, the successful changes to their game are even more subtle and take longer than a higher handicapper. However, these players, including myself, understand the processes of change and are mentally prepared to work a bit longer to achieve the goals they seek. This is nothing new in sports because the better we perform, but harder it is to refine our game. But, this is a challenge that many of the stronger players accept and relish.

Immediate results are possible if we are walking down the right path. I think that all players have room for improvement, especially me, if they are willing to accept the possibility for frustration by keeping their eyes on the prize.

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

7 thoughts on “Expecting Your Golf Game to Improve

  1. Pingback: Tuning Up with a Par 3 Course – MyBreaking90

  2. Jim, great perspective. Like the financial investor, the player that invests in their game through lessons and practice, needs to ignore the froth of the daily ups and downs and focus on the continual overall benefits. Hope your game is moving in the right direction!

    Brian

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Immediate results come whether we are on the right path or not. 😉 What you can’t really expect is immediate gratification with every change. There are hidden frustrations with every great change we make. Hit it longer and you have to relearn distances with every club. Roll it better and your speed control will need adjusting. It’s the game. Everything ties together. One benefit I got from my lesson was I hit the ball higher now with the more neutral grip. That required changes too. The ball doesn’t roll out on the green as much. I need to attack more if I don’t want to leave it short. Another course management issue comes into play with that too. There are corners I can cut that I couldn’t before and I had to learn which clubs could clear what to take advantage of it. That takes some trial and lots of error at least in my case. 😂
    Frustrations are part of the game. Pay your dues by taking lessons and practicing and eventually the frustrations come fewer and farther between, but you never lose them altogether. That wouldn’t be golf. And we wouldn’t allow it anyway. I know I wouldn’t. We all want to get better no matter how good or bad we are right now. I shot 2 over and come away thinking about the shot into the water that gave me the double and 3 putts that I should have dropped. I’m grateful to be at a point where I can be frustrated by a 2 over round here. It may be a short, easy course, but it requires golf shots to shoot 2 over even here. They had the short hole playing only 70 yards today with all three tee’s on the women’s tee box. My favorite distance. The divot was 2 inches short of the hole. It banged off the pin and left me a testy sidehill 2 footer which I banged right in like I should. I just wished I’d done that on a couple others today.
    Decided to try the fitting again the day before the storm (hopefully) blows by. It’s supposed to be just west of me at 2 AM Wednesday and the worst of the winds will follow that. We’ll be rained out on the course Tuesday and Wednesday for sure so Tuesday seems like a good day to be in the simulator.
    Then again, as high as I hit it right now, it might be fun to play in the tropical storm if the rain bands give us time. Nothing like a 60 mph tail wind to add distance to your drives. Nahhh, I’ve done that once. That was more than enough. The fitting may cost me more, but it will be a lot safer. 😎

    Liked by 1 person

    • Kevin,

      You are right about the domino effect of making changes. It is all part of the fun. I am looking forward to hearing about your fitting. It will be interesting to see what they recommend.

      Cheers Jim

      Like

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