Blog Post By: Emily Rohdy, PGA Head Professional
Most golfers arrive at the golf course before a round anywhere between 30-60 minutes early. There are many different types of golfers out there and everyone prepares for a round of golf differently during this down time. Here a few examples:
- The Trunk Slammer - Shows up a few minutes early, hits zero golf balls, and heads straight to the tee.
- The Lounger - Hit a few balls and relax with their choice of refreshment at the bar or in the golf cart.
- The Professional – Hits as many balls on the range as possible until the starter calls your tee time.
- The “I’m Saving it for the Course” - Takes practice swings and rolls a few putts prior to their tee time.
Whatever your practice routine is prior to getting to the first tee, my personal suggestion would be to spend time getting familiar with the speed of the putting green. Especially when a golf course is designed and has a certain PAR established, which is done with the intent of 2 putts per hole (36 total).
A great way to figure out the speed prior to your round is to utilize the "Ladder Drill". Simply take a handful of golf balls and roll one to the edge of the green from where you're standing (30-50 feet). Then, hit the next one as close to that ball as you can without hitting it past. You will repeat this with each ball until you hit a ball past the one prior or run out of balls.
Reverse Ladder Drill
You can also do this the other way by hitting a golf ball 5-10 feet in front of you. Then, take the next ball and hit it just in front of that one, and so on, until you run out of room or until you hit one shorter than the previous ball.
Remember, the largest percentage of strokes taken with a single club is with the putter. If you incorporate this drill into your warm-up routine, I can guarantee that you will become a much better lag putter and you’ll start shaving those unnecessary strokes off your scorecard in no time!