Want to know a couple of guaranteed ways with immediate results to improve your enjoyment of golf?
On an average round, how many shots do you take to reach the green in regulation? As regulation allows two putts per hole, on a par 3, that would mean reaching the green in one shot. A par four in two. A par five in three.
If you are a recreational golfer and do this on less than half the holes, a look at how the game is being approached is a good idea.
In Webster’s dictionary the word “par” is defined as “a common level; an amount taken as an average or norm; an accepted standard”.
However, in the USGA Handicap Manual, “Par is the score an expert golfer would be expected to make for a given hole”.
Unless shooting par for you is a regular thing, here are a couple of tips to consider that will bring your scores closer to something you can call the kids about.
First, your selection of tee markers should be at the distance where you can reach the majority of greens in regulation. There will always be holes that would be challenging to even tour players, but if you are not reaching greens in regulation it would be a wise decision to swallow your pride and play the next forward set of tees. If the forward tees are too much, tee from the 150 yard marker.
The game will be much more enjoyable for you and the attempt to maintain your position on the course will not be nearly as stressful.
Another idea is to set your par at a more attainable level. If par, according to the USGA Handicap Manual, is the expectation of expert golfers, then how many of us can realistically put ourselves in that category? If your average score is closer to bogey golf then a goal of shooting 18 or 9 over would be a more attainable par.
We all know the mental approach to the game is one of the most challenging. If all those golf lessons and Golf Digest tips haven’t dropped your scores like you would wish, give these tips a try. Imagine standing on the tee knowing you have six shots to get it it in the hole.
Old Man Par is your friend. – Bobby Jones
To Good Golf,
Coach Tony Simpson, PGA
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