Facilities Manager, Certified Instructor
TourAcademy at TPC Scottsdale
Next weekend I’ll be taking a group of junior golfers to their first of a series of five 18 hole tournaments. The kids will play their own ball and based on their finish each week earn points for the team. To me, this is one of the best ways to improve your game, junior or adult, here are some of the things I’ll have my eye on.
To get better quickly you need feedback. As a coach/instructor, the more feedback you can give anyone, the better. The hard thing for junior golfers and golfers in general is to detach from that number good or bad and find opportunities to get better. We all get disappointed when we don’t play well, doesn’t mean we’re a bad person or a bad player. Tournament golf will expose you without mercy, good or bad, and you should look at it as nothing more than the state of your game on that day. You’re never as good as you think you are nor are you as bad as you think you are. Stay patient and observant.
Once you’ve played a tournament round of golf, take some time and reflect on the day, let your round tell you what you need to work on. The juniors will be able to use the week in between events to assess their game, and work on areas that may not have been that great or off that day. Maybe you need to hit a few more fairways, cut down on penalty shots, be more aware of your management on the course. Any of these will guide a session on the range or the putting green. You’ll have motive, incentive to work hard and improve. You don’t have to change the world in a day, just the commitment to getting better every day, bit by bit.
This is the last portion of the loop and the beginning of the loop. You’ve spent the week working on some of the individual skills and now its time to go back out and play. I was amazed during my playing days how many opportunities I got to use the skills I worked on the previous week, most of the time with strong improvement. This small loop works for anyone and everyone, and has great power once you’ve successfully navigated your way through improving each week. I know this is golf specific, but I don’t think this applies exclusively to golf, one of the many things golf has taught me about golf and life. Use any and every opportunity to assess your game, get some feedback, and put the work in to get better!