The Best Way To Save Strokes On The Golf Course

It is that time of year where I start to formulate my plan to lower my golf score in the upcoming golf season. Of course, I am focused on sharpening my short game because over the years, that has proven the best way to sustain my current low scores. But, what do I need to do to this year improve my scores and to keep this improvement moving forward. As I watch the movie ‘Seven Days In Utopia’, I am reminded of the saying that “the first step to finding a good game is to find some conviction”. In other words, be a student of the game and be open to adjusting/changing/improving the areas that need improving. Well, I think I know the where my conviction lies this year and I am excited to get started.

After analyzing my game from last year, I know what area I need/want to focus. It is nothing new, but this year I am going to up my conviction. I am going to focus on my approach shots from 150 yards. This is normally a 7/8 iron and I expect that is not going to change. What I need to do is to improve my GIR from this distance….nothing new right? However, I want to offer this paragraph I read about percentages:

“One surefire way to shave strokes off your score is to improve performance from 150 yards in the fairway. PGA Tour pros hit half of these shots within 23 feet of the hole (and hit the green 77 percent of the time), while 80-golfers knock them to around 40 feet (hitting 50 percent of greens) and 90-golfers to around 55 feet (hitting just over 30 percent of greens). These are Grand Canyon–sized differences! Reducing your proximity by five feet on these shots is a realistic goal and would lead to better outcomes in other areas of your bag. If you hit a 7-iron from 150, for instance, then improving with that club will make you better with your 6-iron and 8-iron too.”

https://golf.com/instruction/analytics-expert-weekend-golfers-save-strokes/
Approach shot from 160 yards at Osprey Links 11th hole.

After reading the whole article, I think the above paragraph will be the foundation for my conviction this year. I want to improve my GIR for sure, but to do it by hitting the ball closer to the hole on all approach shots. This seemingly small thing has a huge cascading affect on my short game.

There are many different areas I need to improve from ball position, swing control, alignment, club selection, and/or solid ball contact. I am not going to do a complete overhaul of my game, but I am going to focus on what I need to do to make small improvements so my ball lands just a bit closer to the pin on my approach shots.

This definitely sounds like a tall order and it is. I have set my goals high this year. I believe that with the proper conviction and intent I will be able to accomplish a stronger foundation for my game. This inturn will produce lower golf scores.

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

6 thoughts on “The Best Way To Save Strokes On The Golf Course

    • Brian,

      I was going to try last year, but I think I am not going to try this year. There is only one pro in the area that I would visit and he is an hour away and very, very busy. So, I will see how I fair on the new track. I have a practice area now, so that in itself will be tremendous help. How is your game coming?

      Cheers Jim

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jim, for someone who’s only played twice since I got back from Myrtle in February, my game’s in good shape. I was experimenting with the putter on the rug all during the Masters and made a radical change to the way I hold the putter. Road tested it on Saturday and putted very well. The key finding is that I can now start the ball on my intended line. You don’t know what a problem that has been for the last couple of seasons. Will stick with it a couple more times out and probably write a post on it. Ball striking is pretty good too. I lost 20 lbs over the winter and that may have something to do with it. Still early though.

        Your season opened yet? I know you were talking about it!

        Brian

        Liked by 1 person

      • Brian,

        Sounds like your game is well ahead of seasons past. Fixing your putting stroke is a huge deal. I hope the new process continues to work. I will look for your post.

        Losing 20 pounds is a big deal. You likely feel better during the entire round. Congrats.

        Our season starts very, very soon. The first cut is finished in many of the course, but we are forecasted for snow over the next couple of days. It will not stay, but it will slow the growing of the grass.

        Cheers Jim

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Well, I’d have to say I could use some work off crappy lies. My short game feels pretty good till I land on one of them.

    But other than that, my short game is feeling pretty good right now. I had a couple sandies in a row for the first time ever (I think) this weekend. The first from a green-side bunker for par, and the second from a fairly deep fairway bunker from 145 for a birdie. Left both about 6 feet away. I still had to admit defeat to this course though. 3rd time in a row I failed to break 80 and we rotate to a new course next week so it may be a good long while before I get to head back and try again. The guys faired worse than I did there for sure. It’s a tough course. Full of water, bad sightlines, patches of forests and of course homes. The fairways are mostly tight, and the greens have lots of slope. So it’s a challenge for sure. I think the hardest part about it though is you need to know where things run off into trouble. Something you have to find out the hard way. I found a few of them on a 4 hole stretch this week that kept me from breaking 80. Except of one shot on those holes, I thought I’d hit just want I needed but I was wrong about every time. A bogie, a couple triples, and a double on those 4 holes killed my chance, but I learned something for the next time I guess whenever that comes.

    Oh, and I got all the new grips on the clubs the night before. I bought Golf Prides new CPx grips. They’re pretty nice. I’m quite happy with how much grip they provide. And it’s nice to have all the clubs using the same grip again. The fact that some where mid sized and a few were normal sized and having three different types on them made finding more consistency harder I think. We’ll see but I did like having them all match again.

    Liked by 1 person

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