Learning To Play
The hardest part about golf can be getting started. Ask yourself a few questions. First, why do you want to play? Is it for work or social reasons?
Maybe then you need only some basic instruction and patient friends. Perhaps you’re looking to jump in headfirst in hopes of getting better fast. If so, there’s plenty of top-level instruction out there.
Take lessons right away
The bad news when you’re just starting out is you don’t know much about golf. The good news? You don’t know much about golf. You probably haven’t ingrained many bad habits, and you have tons of questions about what to do. Nothing beats starting out with some positive direction. Don’t just seek instruction when you’re struggling. It is just as important to know what you’re doing right as what you are doing wrong.
Have a range routine Everyone wants to see how far they can hit a golf ball, but when you go to the driving range, resist the temptation to immediately start ripping drivers. Start out by hitting one of your wedges or short irons, warming up your golf muscles with half-swings. Then increase the length and speed of your swings, and move on to your middle irons. Work your way up to the driver, and after you hit some balls with it, go back to a short iron or wedge. This will help you keep your tempo and tension level in check.
Learn the short shots
Roughly half of your strokes come within 50 yards of the green. That means you probably should spend half of your practice time with your wedges and putter. This might sound boring, but the good news is, you can practice your short game in your back garden. Lay some buckets at various distances and try to pitch balls into them. Give yourself good lies and bad lies, just like you get on the course.
Lost your way?
Learning golf can at times be overwhelming. When you feel frustrated, go back to hitting short chip shots. The chipping swing is the basis of the entire swing; it’s the full swing in miniature.
Golf is hard enough without needing eight shots just to get to the green. Start on a par 3 or “executive” course before you try an 18-hole championship course. On a par-3 course, all the holes are par 3s – that is, usually less than 200 yards. Executive courses typically have multiple par-3 holes and their par 4s and 5s are shorter than what you’d find on a championship course. Give yourself some time to get acclimated here before
taking on a bigger challenge.