Practice is the time honored pastime of the golfer. Practice is fun, rhythmic and seductive. Let's make sure we maximize on our return on our investment of time at the range.
There are differing reasons to go to the range. Like most athletic pursuits a good practice regimen leads to a good performance so we want a solid practice routine; one that leads us to success, one that creates a can-do attitude. That is what golf should be.
So, let's get the most from our visit to the range. Ideally golfers stretch before playing or practicing golf. Hamstring stretches, back loosening, upper and lower body light stretches are always beneficial. Have you stretched today? Good, now we are ready.
Some golfers like to warm up with a very basic chipping drill. There's something reassuring in seeing that club face meet the ball and watching the gentle loft of a chip shot. We also get the feel for the grip and a nice easy tempo working in our favor.
Next, we urge our beginners to go with the reliable, trusted 7 iron. Our weapon of choice. Your 7 iron blends the short irons and the long irons perfectly. It allows us to begin our long game swing with a short iron feel. With a 34 degree loft, this is definitely a user friendly club and warm-up tool. Let's spend some quality time with this baby. How about eight minutes or as much time as it takes to get our tempo?
After that, we should move to a longer iron. Perhaps, a five iron. Let's keep our tempo, make sure our head is positioned properly through the entire swing. We are gradually building to a more complete and aggressive turn. We'll spend five minutes here. Now, we begin to think about the big guns. Let's swing at least one rescue club or fairway wood (5 minutes) before unleashing the Monster - the driver. (7 minutes). We suspect you'll give that a little more play, but we think you should now begin to work your way back down the ladder. Hit a different fairway wood or rescue club, hit a six iron, a nine iron and old reliable, your pitching wedge before finishing with the 7 iron.
There may be times when you just want to swing one or two clubs. Great. Go for it. But, the 7 iron should probably be your routine warm-up weapon.
Whatever your routine, remember why you are there. That is to learn about, improve and develop your golf swing. Many golfers lose sight of their mission. It is not about how many swings you perform. It is about how many quality swings you execute. Do not develop bad habits at the range. That happens. Make your stance, grip, setup such a rehearsed routine that it is automatic but disciplined. Make every swing a learning experience. Learn something with every practice swing and soon you'll be swinging less on the course. That's the goal. Practice to improve!
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