How to get your swing back after a long layoff

April 15, 2009

It’s that time of year – the weather is 80 degrees one day and 35 the next. It’s difficult to get on the course consistently, and we’re all rusty from lack of play over the winter. So what can you do to start the season fresh and knock that rust off? I recommend the following game plan to help get your season off to a good start. Get your clubs ready for the season If your clubs need to be re-gripped, do it at the beginning of the season.  If you are looking at a new set of clubs now is the time to buy them.  By all means if you are looking at getting a new set, get a club fitting.  The price is the same as if you buy them off the rack.  And remember, if your buddies are selling you their old set, try before you buy!  They may be a good deal, just not for you. Play!Get out and play a few rounds  After a long, cold winter your body is stiff and needs to move. The first time you swing after a long time away is the hardest, so make sure you get to the course early enough to warm up your full swing and short game to give yourself the best chance at making a good score. Play a few rounds, see what your swing and game are like, and then develop a plan for improving your game. Goal SettingWhat would you like to accomplish this season in your golf game? Maybe you would like to lower your score 10 strokes, or add distance to all your clubs. Perhaps you want to play more golf and learn to practice correctly. Whatever your goal may be, you need to sit with your instructor and plan out your year. Lessons Taking golf lessons early on in the season is a great start to accomplishing your goals for the year. An instructor can help direct your game and help you understand how you are going to reach your goals.  They will also keep you on task. If your goal is to lower your score by 10 strokes, and your short game is the place you need the most help, your instructor will keep your focus on that part of the game. Schedule If golf is your serious hobby you should plan time for it. You will want to plan your practice time, your playing time and your lesson time. If you know your schedule at the first of the season you will stick to that time. Planning is the key for improvement. BalanceJust as you need balance in your life, your game needs balance also. If you play too much and never practice, your game will stay the same. If you practice your driving and never practice putting, then your game will be unbalanced. Your game needs a good balance of practice on all parts of the game. You need to play different golf courses to give your game a different look. Do something different for your golf game this year to keep improving. PracticePractice days need to be structured. I see golfers get a large bucket of golf balls and work only on the driver. If the driver is what you wanted to work on, then great. But if you wanted to practice a consistent swing, then a mid-iron would be best. Give some direction to your practice and watch your game improve.
By developing a plan for your golf game early in the season, you will see the pay off all year round. Good luck!