When you begin playing golf, you will notice a lot of changes in yourself and in the way that you think, perceive and notice your surroundings whilst playing golf.
All these little things can take a toll on your mind and body. As a beginner, you might not feel comfortable on the tee or addressing the ball anymore because of all these distractions that are in your head.
As a beginner, this is a lot to take in. We understand that you might get exhausted mentally and so we have compiled a list for you. This list will help you to concentrate on your golf game as a beginner and help you focus on the shot rather than all these distractions.
1 – Sync the mind and the body
As with any other sport, golf also requires that you keep your mind and body balanced and in sync. The mind controls the body and the body, in turn, controls how your game will be on the course. One way of keeping the mind and the body on the same level is by doing some pre-warm up exercises and breathing techniques. These warm-up exercises ensure that your body gets into the mood of playing golf. So that when you actually play, there is no hindrance in your mind and body movement.
There are many youtube videos on this subject and these can help you design your own pre-game warm up. We don’t just mean stretching, we mean warming up your mind and focus your head. Have you ever heard the saying ” Get your head in the game”
2 – Prepare your muscles
To get a better concentration on your golf game as a beginner, you need to relax and warm up your body or at least to an extent so that your muscles are prepared for the physical exertion that is about to come. Although in golf you do not have to move around a lot or run around constantly, you still need a certain level of practice in muscle movement.
Especially concerning your upper body, the muscles are stiff. The swing and the movement that you will need to produce a good shot will only occur when your muscles are a bit loose. Once your muscle pains go away, you can pay more attention to the game.
3 – Clothing
As a beginner, you need to be comfortable in order to concentrate on your game. Comfortable golf clothing is must have before entering the field. Most golf courses have a rule on the type of clothes which you can wear. Adhering to this rule will not only improve your reputation but also allow you to play a better game. There are a lot of young individuals who want to appear fashionable on the golf course, Ricky Fowler springs to mind. While we want you to be a trendsetter in fashion it will be a great distraction if you’re a beginner. Evaluate your priorities.
If you feel uncomfortable in what you’re wearing because you feel people are watching you or the club members don’t like it you are only adding pressure to yourself. If you’re a very low handicap player it’s easier for you to push the boundaries and try new things as many people won’t comment on a low handicap player in fear of a direct handicap response.
The practical side of golf clothes has to be considered. I play better in short sleeve T-Shirts than I do in full winter clothing and jackets.
I feel restricted and it takes the focus off my shot. I seem to change my pre-shot routine as I’m messing around with the jacket or sleeves.
4 – Clear your head
Once you become a professional or at least a good golfer, this point will become easier for you because you would not have to practice it before every game. However, when you are a beginner, you have to put in extra effort to clear your head. There are certain techniques and exercises which are done to achieve the level of clarity needed for a golf game. You can learn these tips through golf pros and golf tutorials.
They will teach you breathing exercises because irregular breathing is the most common reason for breaking attention from the game at hand. How many of you hold your breath when using the driver. Holding your breath will tense the muscles in your arms which will produce a poor shot. Taking 2-3 deep breaths before you address the ball will allow oxygen to your brain and that will improve focus. Also breathing out on the downswing will help.
5 – Visualizing
Visualizing your game and the shot you are about to take is vital for a better concentration. Similar to the point explained above, once you enter the big leagues, visualizing will become a natural process for you but before you reach that level you will have to make an effort to do this. You have to imagine exactly where you want your aim to be and where you want the ball to land. Your arm will automatically move in that direction and once you do this your shots become more consistent.
I like to address the ball and place my head on a slight tilt and look to my left out of the corner of my eye without moving my head too much. This really focuses me on the intended target and ball flight without messing up my stance.
The pre-shot routine is talked about in golf more than any other part of the game. Everyone has their own routine, behind the ball or at address. the point of this is to take away all the things around you that may distract you from your intended shot. How, many times have you said: “I hope I don’ hit it into the trees” and then you do? If only you had said ” Once I hit this shot past the trees into the fairway ” you would be setting yourself up for success rather than a disaster.
6 – Commitment
Your concentration will automatically increase once you commit to the game. This is more of an issue with most beginners because, in the beginning, everyone is more focused on their swing and the results. There is no fear of losing and no anticipation for beating the competition because you know you are in the learning phase. All your energy is concentrated on improving your game and becoming better at it.
You must fully commit to each and every shot and you need to follow through with the shot you intended. Do not shy away at the last minute and break your confidence. If you have thought through your shot in your pre-shot routine and you know you can do it, then go for it. Give it 100% what have you got to lose. When you’re beginning and you hot those short poor shots and lots of tops, it’s usually because you haven’t fully committed and executed the shot you had planned. You pulled out or backed off at the last minute.
7 – Do not notice other golfers
While this is tough to do at first, you have to fully concentrate on what you are doing and ignore the other golfers on the field. Many of these players have vast experiences and have been playing for a long time. There is no knowing what they are thinking when they look at you so you should not assume the worst.
On the field only you are the main player. Ignorance is the best policy and even if you think you are playing bad, you should not let the opinion of others affect you in the long run. Don’t let your emotions take over, they will never help your game. There is also golf etiquette to consider and everyone should adhere to it if they do this will help you concentrate on the shot in hand by not distracting you. Read our thoughts on Golf Etiquette.
8 – Focus on your posture
Once you are in the correct posture, your concentration increases. As a new person in this game, the posture will take a lot of time to perfect. Be patient in this and give yourself time to adjust. It is completely normal if at first, you are not comfortable with your posture. The body movement is different than you are normally used to having. For this, you should get a professional to check your stand. They will correct your mistakes and when you have the correct posture, your concentration improves considerably.
You can also buy apps and camera stands that allow you to video your swing and play it back. This will give you some instant feedback and help you improve your stance and confidence. We love the Zepp 3D Golf swing Analyser.
As mentioned in all these points above, concentration is the key to winning a golf game. But you must also remember that you need to treat golf as a sport. Being competitive is okay as long as you do not let the competition exhaust you. When you are on the field, remember to stay polite and positive Your attitude will greatly affect how much fun you have. With a positive attitude and the will to be better, you actually become better in no time. Follow these tips and get to the next level of your golf game in no time.
Most of all… Enjoy yourself. It’s your free time to have fun with your friends. Don’t take golf too seriously, honest there are more important things in life to worrys about. Golf handicaps ensure everyone can have a competative game no matter what level you’re playing at.
9 – Equipment
You don’t need the best and latest golf equipment to enjoy and play good golf. Having a suitable set of golf clubs will certainly make you feel more comfortable on the course.
If you have confidence in your golf equipment then you’ll have confidence in your game.
You don’t have to spend a fortune on custom golf clubs when you’re a beginner. My first set of clubs were a £99 set of Dunlop Golf clubs from Sports Direct and they made me fall in love with the game.
We wrote a complete guide to buying a set of golf clubs for beginners. Have a read and I’m sure that you’ll find some great clubs that will be perfect for your level and help you feel more confident about your game.
Focusing on what matters ie: Your intended shot. This is the most important part of producing a good shot. Your confidence will grow as your handicap and skill level increases. Think of those good shots you have done previously and try to forget the bad ones.
When you first think about playing golf you will consider lots of different things. You will ask yourself, is golf for you and you’ll question if you should start playing golf at all. Read our article on Why we recommend you start playing golf.
My confidence grew after I had lessons and played a round with the club pro. The things that I thought were important suddenly didn’t matter. I was more worried about how I looked and how my swing looked than the shot I produced. This came to light when I played a round with a club member who was in his late 60’s and had the worst looking swing ever. He went on to shoot 9 over through 18 and I was 19 over. He told me I was more interested in how my swing looked to others than my score and I let my ego rule my shot selection.
He was right, from that day on I focused on results rather than anything else. My handicap dropped dramatically and I started to enjoy the game more.
If you take one tip away from reading this blog it would be to focus on what matters…. having fun and playing the shots you can do not the shots you wished you could do. You will enjoy the game more even if your mates are egging you on to play those impossible shots.
Have fun and play well.