The Do’s and Do Nots of Golf for Beginners
Golf is by far the greatest game ever created, and the most difficult to master some would say. Yet getting started in golf is a tough intimidating prospect.
To help you (or someone you know) take the plunge, here’s a list of some do’s and don’ts for the up and coming player.
#1- BEFORE YOU EVEN GOTO THE COURSE:
DO: Start at a driving practice range, not on the golf course. The golf driving range is the perfect place to get acclimated to the game. It’s low-pressure, casual and you can stay as long as you want.
DON’T: Worry about anyone else at the range. Everyone was once a beginner and we all know the game is a real struggle. No one is judging you! It might seem everyone is watching you, but believe me, nobody cares about other people’s swings.
If you make it through your first range session and decide you like golf and want to pursue it seriously, then:
#2- DO: Work with a golf pro if possible to get a proper swing foundation. At the very least find someone who has some experience and can teach you golf etiquette and the basics.
DON’T: Let your spouse or significant other become your primary teacher. This is often a recipe for disaster that could drive you away from the game (and possibly each other!).
#3- DO: Learn how to grip the golf club properly with the interlocking grip.
DON’T: Try to keep your head “down and still” through impact. Let it follow through with the rest of your body.
#4-DO: Bend from your hips.
DON’T: Bend from your knees.
#5- DO: Get your lead shoulder under your chin on the backswing and finish with your face, chest and hips and facing the target.
DON’T: Stay flat-footed through impact.
#6- DO: Concentrate on the short game by chipping and putting before focusing on long irons (3-iron, 4-iron, etc.) and your hybrids, fairway woods and driver.
It always helps to have a friend when you’re starting something new, especially something like golf because usually its good to have at least one person to golf with. So:
#7- DO: Recruit friends or family to learn with you and make it an event!
Find a local Topgolf or celebrate a practice session with a few drinks at the clubhouse bar. Golf can be hard, so make sure you have fun and not take it super seriously at first.
GETTING RIGHT GOLF EQUIPMENT
When it comes to purchasing golf clubs and equipment, golf is not cheap and it can add up. Yet you don’t have to spend a ton on golf right away. Start slowly and:
#8- DO: Buy a golf glove. Some people like to play without one, but the vast majority of golfers use them.
DON’T: Worry about buying your own full set of clubs and a ton of golf accessories until you can make consistent, solid contact every time you swing.
#9- DO: Invest in some proper golf clothing and golf accessories. Get yourself some good golf shirts, golf shorts, tees, golf balls, markers and other golf items you will need when you golf.
DON’T: Buy those long golf socks or headcovers for your irons. Please. Just don’t.
When you feel ready to finally goto the golf course and play from the driving range, make sure you:
#10- DON’T: Attempt to play on an actual golf course until you can get the ball airborne. This is both for your benefit and everyone else on the course.
** Its probably best to start at a smaller beginner-friendly par 3 nine-hole course. This is a short course with each hole being a 100 yard par 3 hole.
DO: Practice Golf at Home - You can get a good golf practice net to use indoors or outdoors to practice your swing before your big day on the actual course.
The driving range is great, but being able to follow up and get more swings at home can be really beneficial . You could also get a golf mat, golf chipping nets and an indoor putting green to help with your short game.
DO: Play as quickly as possible. Always be ready to hit your shot when it’s your turn. (Do not be one of these people who take forever with 5 practice swings, 3 deep breaths, and then a big swing and a miss! Focus and Swing.)
#11- DON’T: Use cheaper golf or range balls when starting out. You don't need top of the line Titliest Pro V1 golf balls, but don't get some golf balls at a garage sale and then wonder why your drive is going 140 yards.
Give yourself the best possible chance of success when first starting out and make sure you at least have good balls.
You want to build your confidence and being cheap doesn't go with golf.
DO: Take the time to learn basic rules and etiquette. This can be pretty key when you start playing at a bigger normal course. It helps to know the rules and what is acceptable at golf courses.
#12- DON’T: Spend too much time looking for your golf ball, and don’t pick up any other balls on the course, even if you can’t see anyone. You might ruin someone else’s good round and its a known fact that its bad karma. You dont ever want to anger the Golfing Gods!
DO: Mark your ball on the green so you can identify it and get out of anyones way that is putting. So this is one of the smaller golf accessories that is key to have when starting out, it makes you feel like a real golfer when you mark your ball.
#13- DON’T: Mark your scorecard on or by the green. On a busy golf course, people will be waiting to hit their approach shots, so wait to update your score when you get to the next tee box.
DO: Take care of the golf course by raking the sand trap bunkers and replacing divots.
Finally, the most importantly:
#14- DO: Remember the good golf shots and forget the bad ones, because there will be a lot of the latter.
DON’T: Get discouraged. Golf is tough, but it’s worth the effort. In the immortal words of Arnold Palmer: “Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated; it satisfies the soul and frustrates the intellect.
It is at the same time rewarding and maddening—and it is without a doubt the greatest game mankind has ever invented.
There is no doubt that golf is a really hard game. I have a friend I golf with who after 30 years of golfing is still not that good, and if anything seems to get worse. YET he keeps playing because its fun, its a great way to get outside and get that good fresh air.
Its a fun activity for us and he doesn't take it to seriously. I mean unless your able to dedicate a lot of money and time, the odds are your never going to get that good at golf.
Either way, it will take a lot of playing time to improve, so never give up and it really is the greatest game ever created.
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