What do you do to get ready to make your shot? Although you may not be Chevy Chase in Caddyshack, you probably have some kind of a pre-shot routine that gets you ready to swing even if you don’t realize it.
Even if you’re not aware of what your pre-shot routine is, a good routine plays a bigger role in helping you make the perfect swing than you realize. What you do to get ready for your shot helps to get you psyched up rather than leaving you with anxiety about that perfect moment to swing. Having the right routine helps you to focus and draw on your top physical and mental golf skills to execute the perfect shot.
In this post, our golf fitness pros at Totally Driven in Edina are covering the important role of a good pre-shot routine in helping you make the perfect swing. To improve your swing and hone your pre-shot routine, sign up for a consultation with a golf fitness trainer from Totally Driven!
Breaking Down Your Routine
If you haven’t really put much thought into your pre-shot routine, maybe it’s time to start developing pre-shot rituals to help you succeed. Here are a few things you should include in your routine to help you get the perfect swing:
This is where you give into the intellectual side of golf fitness. More than just getting hyped to swing or aiming, this phase of your routine is all about developing your strategy, which can vary from one situation to the next.
Here are a few things to consider while you’re getting mentally prepared for a shot’s trajectory and shape:
● The Target: Consider your target and how the situation you’re in may be unique from other shots. You’ll need to think about whether your ball is on a downhill or an uphill as well as where it’s located.
● Potential Challenges: Is there water on the course or anything that could affect your shot? Is the wind speed currently high?
● Mental Readiness: Do you feel confident in your game to be a little more aggressive or take on some degree of risk? If you don’t, this is where you might be better off sticking to a more conservative target and shot.
Rehearsing the Shot
Next, it’s time to think about the way the shot feels and rehearse your shot. Think of this as the “Be the Ball” phase of your shot. This step is all about planning and controlling your swing for the perfect shot. Like the mental phase, how you approach the rehearsal phase will vary from one player to the next.
Here are some examples of how golfers might mentally “rehearse” their shot:
● Visualize the swing and the trajectory of the ball in your head.
● Describe your posture, swing, and trajectory to yourself in your mind.
● Imagine the feeling of the swing in your hands.
The beauty of the rehearsal phase is that there’s no wrong way to go about it as long as you’re finding some way to visualize the swing and ball flight ahead of your shot.
The Pre-Swing Walk
The pre-swing walk to the ball is something you may not have previously considered part of your pre-shot routine, but it can certainly play a role in your swing execution. Next time you’re getting ready to swing, pay careful attention to your own walk and posture and ask yourself how they may be impacting your swing. Your emotional state as you walk into the ball can help to set you up for success, which is why some players choose to smile as they walk into the ball.
To get ideas for improving your walk to the ball, watch some professional golfers play and look out for how they approach their walk. A more confident walk, also known as a golf swagger, is one of the most common approaches to this step. It can contribute to increased swing confidence, posture, and swing performance.
Making the Swing
The best golfers give themselves over to their muscle memory and let their subconscious take over when taking their swing. You can think of this as taking a more “zen” approach to your swing. If you let doubts or overthinking cloud your mind as you get ready to swing, it can cause you to freeze up or sabotage your posture and execution.
Instead, practice clearing your mind so your instincts can take over. To accomplish this, some golfers find it helpful to focus on a detail like the tempo of the shot or the feeling of their turn, while others prefer a moment of complete clarity. Find out what works best for you and incorporate it into your pre-shot routine.
Refining Your Perfect Swing Routine
Practicing your pre-shot routine is essential both on and off the golf course. Be sure to work it into your golf fitness drills. That way, when you step onto the golf course, it will be second nature.
At Totally Driven, you can work with an Edina golf fitness trainer to develop drills and golf exercises for flexibility and focus that help you execute a better shot. Whether you’re in need of golf coaching to help polish a certain skill set or you’re looking for golf lessons for beginners, we can help.
If you’re in need of a golf club fitting, we can help with that in our golf store as well. Contact us to learn more about a membership or golf club fitting, or give us a call at (952) 681-2728. We can’t wait to help you perfect your pre-shot routine and get a better swing!