We are all tuned into the sayings “practice makes perfect,” “everything takes practice” and “if you want to be the best you have to practice,” so the importance of practice is pretty obvious. However, it isn’t just doing something over and over that is going to make the difference, it’s how you practice that will make the biggest impact on your development as an athlete.
Here are 3 keys to quality practice:
Gary Gilchrist always says, “a goal without a plan is false hope.” When going to the range, the putting green, the chipping green or working on any area of your game you must first set your GOAL. Goal setting ensures that you have taken the time to fully understand and strategize on WHAT you are working on and ways to improve your skill. It is important to set small goals in each area of your game. Make sure goals are realistic and achievable based on your personal skill level. For example, chip 7 out of 10 balls in a 3’ circle and hole 4 of 10 putts from 12’.
Knowing what you need to work on and having a plan of which drills you’ll be using is essential to keep your practice moving along smoothly. Some of the top drills used are generic, motion, personal, fitness and slow motion. Generic drills focus on the body motion and swing shape, these drills are typically done away from the ball. Motion drills are different because you put the generic drills in action by doing swing drills and hitting balls. Personal drills are designed to specifically focus on swing flaws; fitness drills work on body motion/feeling and body/swing connections. While slow motion drills are done with your eyes closed to notice feel and feedback.
The only way to determine how much you improved from practice is to test your skills. By putting these new skills into play and seeing real results a player can walk away with a sense of accomplishment and the confidence to transition their new and improved game from practice to course play.
The GGGA system of training is built around a player building confidence in their game with quality practice that translates to course play. When a student-athlete understands how and why the training will impact their game they become less frustrated with themselves and are able to focus on positive improvement. After a focused and successful practice, a player is able to walk away with a greater sense of achievement and confidence, which will undoubtedly be seen on the course!