Focus on Your Pre-shot Routine for Post-Shot Success

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The Open Championship signifies one of the toughest tests of golf anywhere on the planet. Every competitor feels the pressure and importance of each shot whether it’s a 2 footer for par, or laying up on a par five. Concentration and discipline are huge factors when competing for a major championship and a solid pre-shot routine can enhance your level play. Below are three simple things to focus on when developing and maintaining a your preshot routine.

Determine Your Player Type (Technical or Feel)

Golfers who play by feel generally take practice swings with picturing the intended ball-flight in their mind. The opposite is true for golfers that play based upon technique. Technical players take slow, position focused practice swings, picturing a mental image of the correct swing in their mind. No matter what type of player you are limit yourself to two or three practice swings. Anything beyond that and you’ll then begin to let doubt creep into your mind.

Focus

Narrowing your focus on the golf course can be tough, but you can combat negative thoughts by becoming hyper focused. Focus by selecting a small target on that you can still see, for example if the flagstick is your target, focus solely on the flag or stick itself. Imagine a target line running from your target back through the golf ball. The visual of the extended target line through the ball will assist you in aligning your feet when you address the ball. Now, pick out a very small spot (broken tee or discolored blade of grass) on your intended line, 1-5 feet in front of the golf ball. As you walk into your shot, keep focused on that spot while aligning your clubface and body to the target line that you previously visualized.

Personalize & Repeat

At this point in your preshot routine it all becomes personal. Some people like to waggle the club, check their target, or take a deep breath to loosen yourself. Do whatever you’re comfortable with and what’s natural. The key is to repeat this process every time. If your routine takes 20 seconds, then it should take 20 seconds every time.

Once you’ve established a routine, you’ll be ready to take your new pre-shot routine to the golf course. Remember, consistent thinking leads to consistent shots, and consistent shots leads to lower scores!

Quick Recap

1. Determine Your Player Type: Feel or technical golfer

2. Focus: Pick a small target

3.  Personalize & Repeat: Get comfortable and don’t stray

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Ryan Spaziani

Ryan Spaziani has been a Class “A” member of the PGA of America since 2012. He graduated from the Professional Golfers Career College in Orlando, FL with an Associate Degree in Professional Golf Management. He has worked for both private and public golf courses in the Raleigh, North Carolina. Ryan has a strong passion and extensive knowledge for teaching, club fitting and growing the game of golf.