How to Bounce A Ball On Your Wedge

Believe it or not, this is not something have actually tried often. I am quite surprised because in my younger days, I was all about trying trick shots with a basketball and spinning it around my body. Yet, this skill was never transferred to golf. So today, I am presenting a short video on the basics.

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Tricks on the Range

To most golfers, the practice range is a sacred place. It is a place where players like Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods, Michelle Wie, Vijay Singh or Grateful Golfers regularly hone their skills. A major difference between a professional golfer and an amateur is their intention as the approach the practice range. It is this intention that helps focus their practice to accomplish their goals.

After hours on the practice range, there is no question they have developed some tricks to help make the most out of their practice time. Here are some sites to check out:

Each of these offer good advice on developing a routine and a great starting place for anyone trying to improve their game through focused practice.

Through the years, I have used many of the above suggestions and the following tricks that helped fix my woes.

When fixing a slice or a hook, I stand on the far side of the range. As a right-handed player with a slice problem, I stand on the far left side. This may seem strange, but it forces me use a different swing plane and aiming point.  I am so focused on not hitting the ball out of bounds, that it helped me straighten my slice.

It is important to use aiming sticks. At the very least, use two clubs. These training aides help align your swing and your aiming point. I use them to determine my ball position in relation to my stance, determine my swing plan by the relation of my divot to the aiming sticks, and my alignment of my feet in comparison to how I am aimed. Check out toursticks.com for a complete guide on how to use alignment sticks.

Flag AlignementMy last tip deals with using the flag sticks out in the range.  On my course, it is possible to line up all the sticks until they are one behind each other. I use this visual aid to help identify a poor swing, whether I am fading or drawing the ball that day and to help with my aiming points. If I am on a different range, I will try to line up at least two flags and use them as my aiming point!

There are plenty of tips and tricks to use on the practice range. Today I have mentioned just a few that worked for me.

Golf is all about sharing, so do you have any tips or tricks to use on the practice range?

I am grateful golfer!  See you on the links.

White Noise

I received an excellent golfing book as a present at Christmas; 365 Golf Tips and Tricks from the Pros by Jay Morelli.  This book talks about the basics, rules, sand play, equipment and much more.  It is a very quick read and the tips are concise and to the point.  I recommend it.

This very thoughtful gift started me thinking.  How do I know the difference between a good tip and well…..white noise.

White Noise - Make it Stop!Yes, we all know: white noise  does not add to the situation and drowns out the important information.  This noise can be anything from your 20 handicap playing partner advising you how he they would play the shot while you are thinking; 50 things you are trying to remember during your golf shot or the reams of information (4,930,000 hits to be exact) that that overwhelms you when searching on “how to improve my golf swing”. White noise is all around us all the time. It is a distraction that does slow anyone’s ability to improve their golf game and for $19.95 I can guarantee to improve your mental skills while playing golf….okay, just kidding. But, this is the exact type of white noise that many amateurs will here day in and day out that causes confusion.  Can it really be avoided?  Well, that depends….

Golf is a unique sport.  It is difficult and easy, played as teams and individuals at the same time, or creates inclusiveness or solidarity.  It really is the one sport where a person can play their entire life, compete against no one and yet compete every day.  Golf is a sport where a player can challenge themselves everyday and feel a sense of accomplishment after each round.  No other sport provides this type of dynamic.

Everyone has their own process to cut white noise.  Everyday, we are bombarded with information that is filter, processed, acted upon, or discarded.  The difficulty is to figure out what is important and which process works best; then apply it to golf.  For me, the process is simple:

  1. Identify the problem;
  2. Collect information on the problem;
  3. Analyse the information;
  4. Determine possible solutions or courses of action; and
  5. Decide on way ahead. (repeat as necessary and as often as needed)

Everyone does this process everyday for practically every situation.  However, some golfers looking for a quick fix seem to skip steps 2 and 3.  As an example, Player A always slice the ball off the tee.  They jump to the solution to change their grip because their 20 handicap partner noticed something.  It worked….once.  They decide to change their grip and ultimately, no success!

Instead, the process could look like this:

  1. Player A slices off the tee;
  2. Talk to local Pro or low handicap player, read about why this happens, watch golf training videos;
  3. Compare information gathered to current swing (whole swing not just a specific point);
  4. Try possible solutions on the practice range.  Try different things.  Select several possible solutions (ask local pro for help); and
  5. Decide on the best fix for Player A.

To adjust something in your golf game does take time.  This process does work (at least for me) and is very been very effective in improving my game.  The question always boils down to how much time are willing to commit to making improvements. This is the balancing act that all players must do to achieve their golfing goals.

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