Know your distance

When you pick up the game of golf, one skill you have to master is how to learn your distance. Distance will be part of what determines which golf club you choose to use.

Sometimes looks can be deceiving. You see the pin waving there on the green, and the marker on the course says it’s 100 yards, but you’d swear it was more like 150. Who do you trust – your eyes or the course markers?

Go with the official standards. When you start playing, you want to go to the range where they have big markers out in the field for you to learn how far you’re hitting it. Set up on the golf mat and play through your favorite course in your mind starting with driver and finishing on the green. Paying attention to the specific distances that you are hitting each club.

You’ll want to keep track of your abilities. If you can hit a full wedge 100 yards, then you’ll know to grab that club when you’re 100 yards from the pin. If you can hit your driver 300 yards, then the next time you’re on a par 3, 300-yard hole, pull out that driver and shoot for a hole in one!

Measure off 100 yards and walk it to see just how far it is. Get used to distances so they don’t play tricks with you when you see markers on the course. There are many times when you’re playing fast and can’t find a marker (some courses like for them to be elusive, it seems). You don’t want to hold u play because you can’t gauge the yardage for yourself.

If you play a course with a caddy who regularly caddies on that course, then he will know the yardage from almost any spot – it’s his job to know and to help you get that information as quickly as he can hand you your club.

You also might want to invest in a golf gadget that helps do the job. There’s a GPS unit inside these gadgets that give you the yardage to the center of the green. Then you take that information, figure out how far you can hit each club, and pick the best one for the job.

There are also laser range finders you can use if you prefer that over the GPS units. The accuracy of these gadgets can help you improve your game because it cuts out the guesswork.

Instead of having to search for a sprinkler head (which is where many yardage markers are on modern courses), where you have to then pace the yards to your ball and calculate the numbers real quick, you can point, click, and move along with your game.


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