Has your ego every encouraged you to try and squeeze just a bit more distance from your clubs? You know, trying to eek out an extra 5 or 10 yards instead of clubbing up. I know I am guilty of this needless error for a variety of reasons, but I am starting to understand that this course of action rarely works in my favour. I know that I sometimes gain 5 or 10 extra yards from a club, but that is usually from solid contact or a perfectly in sync swing. The challenge I face is ‘trying’ to hit the ball farther; this is when the my game falls off the rails.
The club that I struggle the most with is my gap wedge. Normally, this club is a solid 100 yards 8 time out of 10. My failure with this club is when I try to hit the an additional 5 or 10 yards. What happens is I end up scooping my gap wedge and only hitting the ball 80 or 90 yards. I struggle with this entire concept because my ego says I should be able to hit my gap wedge farther, but it rarely happens on demand. I know my ego wants me to keep trying, but I need to learn how to hit my wedge better and with greater consistency.
So, my solution to club up. My challenge is that I have a 20 yard difference between the gap wedge and pitching wedge. This year, I worked a great deal on hitting a 3/4 PW in order to close this distance gap. It worked fairly well as long as I prevented my ego get in the way. Unfortunately, having to manipulate my distances with my PW was not really part my winning strategy. I understand that this all part of playing golf and I accept my limitations.
If I expand my woes out to my other clubs, I find that my challenge of trying to hit a bit farther is still there. It is not as pronounced as with my GW, but it is a challenge. This is where I fully accept the distances I normally hit with each club. The funny thing is that the longer the club, the easier it is to accept hitting to distance. I am not sure why that is, but that is my reality. Over the past 15 years or so, I have shifted my mental approach to my game and allowed my club distances drive my approach shots, regardless of what club I am hitting.
As your game starts to evolve, don’t let your ego rule your game. Accept your club distances and let them determine your club selection. You would be surprised at how well it works.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!