You will have been told by Barney and I, and constantly one hears on TV, of how important a routine is. The winter is a great chance to install one, as well as making practice more enjoyable. Secondly, when playing, rhythm and balance is more important than technique and so make that a priority too.
So, the suggested routine: Firstly establish a routine! Not everyone’s will be the same, but the important elements are:
- Approach each shot as a new one from behind the ball,
- Take aim at small targets (you should still have alignment and ball position guides in place),
- Concentrate on rhythm and holding a good finish until the ball lands.
This helps enormously to encourage the rhythm and balance required in a consistent swing.
- Hit 3 half wedges, 3 three-quarter wedges and 3 full ones.
- Follow this with 3 seven irons and then 3 drivers.
- Now take 9 balls and hit a Driver, followed by a 7 iron and then a wedge.
Do this 3 times in rotation; 1st wedge a full one, second three quarters, 3rd a half wedge. Remember, each and every shot is a new one starting from behind the ball! Practice this regularly on its own during the winter, and use it each time before play as a warm up, if you have the opportunity to do so, and likewise each time to finish a practice session. It only requires 24 balls and takes no more than 15 / 20 minutes. This is practising to play and completely separate from practising technique.