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Course Management And How To Use It To Your Advantage

Feb 5, 2008
Course management is a skill and it's only by gaining experience and actually getting on the golf course that you will develop your ability in this area. We all make mistakes, but you have to learn in order to avoid making the same mistakes in the future and increase your chance to score well.

You should always play to your strengths.

Positional Play

It may sound logical but always look for the easiest way to the hole. When you are standing on the green, look at the position of the flag. If the flag is on the right edge of the green then coming in from the left side of the fairway will leave the easier shot.

Sometimes the hole can be cut near a bunker or hazard and in this case you would make a shot to the middle of the green. Sometimes the flag is at the top of a slope, in this case you would want to ensure you have the easiest putt and play the ball below the pin.

Before you start to play a hole, imagine where you would like to position your shots to have the easiest journey to the flag. Hitting from the fairway is much easier than hitting from the rough or a bunker.

Hazards

Occasionally you will find a hazard in your line of play which you are unable to get over. The best play will therefore be to lay up short. All too often the error of using too much club is made with the result of ending up in the hazard. A 'lay up' should be exactly that, and you should choose a club which will not allow your ball to enter the hazard.

Dog Legs

We all think we can hit further than we actually can and therefore the temptation to cut off 'as much as possible' is a real one. In most cases it is better to be wider off the tee than too narrow as this will keep you out of trouble and give a better view.

Recovery Shots

Very often even when we have carefully planned where we would like the ball to be, we find that an 'escape' shot of some sort is required. The safe option is alway best - it may mean you possibly will drop a shot, but better to drop one than make a triple. Don't 'have a go' unless it doesn't matter, or you are very confident you can make the shot.

Make sure that when you are in a bunker, you take a club with enough loft to get you out. That is after all the whole point - if by trying to make a long shot you cannot get out of the bunker because you land back in it, then it costs you more shots.

Course management is the ability to accurately assess what your current ability is and then making the most of it. This is what keeps us all guessing and coming back for more each week..............
About the Author
Can you find a magic way to reduce your handicap? Read more great articles by June-Anne Jones about skills and techniques to help improve your golf. More articles on
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