Demystifying the Pre-shot Routine

It’s something that every pro has, but many newer players are mystified by it. Let’s take a look at the pre-shot routine.

What is a Pre-shot Routine?

Ever watched golf on television and noticed that the pros all have different ways of preparing to take their shots? Each time they take a shot they try to replicate the same process. How many times they waggle their stick, how many times they look at the target- these are all part of the player’s preparations, which can vary wildly from player to player.

They can also include any number of details, each with their own practical or symbolic benefits. Virtually anything can be incorporated into a pre-shot routine, from looking at the club head to adjusting a hat or having a particular move that’s completed before the shot. Small shuffles or balance shifts that indicate to the golfer that it’s time to get started.

Why have a Pre-shot Routine?

golf clubsThere are a number of reasons why every major professional has a pre-shot routine. High on any list of reasons, you’ll find the importance of shutting out the rest of the world before a shot. It’s an act of focus that can take the mind away from the gathered crowds or even your friends at the local course.

The routine usually acts as a way of check listing before a shot is taken. If you know what steps you need to take for a successful shot you’ll find it easier to make sure that you work through each of the steps. If you carry out the routine regularly it will, eventually, become automatic. Not having to think about each element of the shot is great for confidence and consistency.

How Do I Develop a Pre-Shot Routine?

Every golfer’s pre-shot routine is different, so it’s not possible to detail exactly how you should put it together, though there are some things you’ll want to keep in mind.

Make sure that the routine covers all the steps you need to feel confident about the shot. If you like to look at the target more than most, go for it! If you have a particular point in the preparation where you take a practice swing, make that part of the routine.

You’ll also want to make sure that you put together a routine that matches your player rhythm. Some players are much faster than other, from the pre-shot preparations to the swing. It won’t help your game if you pick a mismatched approach to preparation, so take time to think it through.

Watch the pros on television, if that helps, or look it up in a training program. You’ll find there are many approaches to the routine as there are good golfers.

==> Use a pre-shot routine like the pros

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