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Golf Lessons

How to Win a Golf Match

You’ve had your golf swing analyzed. You’ve taken lessons. You’ve invested in good golf clubs. You try to get out on the course regularly. But, no matter what you do, you just can’t seem to figure out how to win a golf match.

First, there’s a greater difference between match play competitions and regular stroke play than many golfers realize. But, fortunately or not, like everything else relating to golf, the differences are largely in your mental approach to the game and the strategies you use on each hole.

5 Tips for Winning a Golf Match

The following tips should help you make the adjustment to match play tournaments and improve your chances of actually winning them.

  1. Practice Properly – Match play is more about consistency and winning each hole. On the driving range, work on the accuracy of your drives. On the practice green, take mostly long or short putts, they are the ones that can make you lose, or gain, the most strokes. While conceded putts might be part of match play, always assume you’ll have to hole out on every green.
  2. Don’t Try to Impress on the First Hole – Even if you’re a low-handicap golfer, save the intimidation factor for later. The risk of going for the jugular off the first tee is that, if you at all misplay it, it could affect your game for many holes to come.
  3. Be Ready to Change Your Strategy Quickly – The more aggressively you play, the higher the chance of misplaying a shot. If your opponent is playing well, you’ll have to stay aggressive. But, even if you start a hole in aggressive mode, be ready switch gears if your opponent gets into trouble. Continuing to be aggressive when you don’t have to can backfire.
  4. Treat it Like It’s a Normal Round – While you play the course with your match-play strategies in mind, over-thinking it and getting too involved in the ‘match’ thing can destabilize your game.
  5. Get to Know the Golf Course – If you’ve never played the course on which your match will take place, try to get in a round before the match. And if you’re looking for an excellent Durham Region golf course to set up a match-play tournament, look no further than Royal Ashburn.

If you liked this post, check out our recent article on how to swing a golf club: the stance.

How to Hold a Golf Club

If the overall mission in golf is to get the ball into the hole using a club, then the only thing between you and that club are your hands on the grip. So learning more about how to hold a golf club is crucial, even for seasoned golfers.

The Basic Grip

There are a number of ways to grip the club, including the baseball grip and interlocking grip. But mastering the basic golf grip first gives you a ‘baseline’ from where you can learn other grips and determine which one helps your golf swing the most.

How to Do a Basic Club Grip

You can try this at home, but its best to be in a space where you can swing the club to get a better feel for the grip.

  1. Place the Club Head on the Ground in Front of You – The face of the head should be perpendicular to the path of the ball or a line to the target. Rest the club grip on your forward leg.
  2. Grab the Club Shaft with Your Non-Dominant Hand – That’s your left-hand if you are right-handed, and vice versa if your swing is left-handed. Raise up the shaft so that it is at a 45% angle to the ground. With your palm facing up, lay the top of the grip across your dominant hand along the joints between your palm and fingers. The top of the grip should extend a few centimetres past the knuckle on your little finger.
  3. Grip the Club – Curl your fingers around the club while simultaneously bringing your thumb across the top of the grip to the other side of the grip. In its final position, your thumb should not be over your index finger, and it should be pointing slightly behind the club.
  4. Grab the Grip With Your Dominant Hand – Place it just below the upper hand with the grip going across the joints between your palm and fingers. The padding on your palm below your thumb should fit in the space between your forefinger and thumb of your upper hand. Your little finger should lie in the space between the index and middle fingers of the upper hand.

Want to find a local Whitby golf club to try out your new grip? Get in touch with us here Royal Ashburn Golf Club. And if you liked this post, make sure to check out our last article on 5 steps to great bunker raking.

How to Swing a Golf Club: The Stance

One of the great pleasures of golf is that it isn’t easy. That can make it a challenge for beginners and experts alike. But the more you learn about the game, the better you will be able to meet that challenge, regardless of your level of play. The most basic skill of all? How to swing a golf club!

The Importance of Learning How to Swing a Golf Club

The basic challenge in golf is learning how to swing to hit the ball consistently well. Without a good swing, no other part of the game, from club selection to the equipment you choose, will really matter.

The Basic Stance

Every golfer develops their own stances as their experience and knowledge expand. The following cover some of the basic starting points for developing a stance that works for you.

  1. The Placement of Your Feet – Keep your feet a little more than shoulder width apart, with your front foot slightly ahead of the ball. The ball should be at or close to the mid-point between your feet.
  2. The positioning of the Club and Ball – Align the ball with the middle of the club head. For the club to be in the right position, arms should be straight out, but elbows shouldn’t be locked. Your upper body should be bent slightly forward at the waist.
  3. Knees Slightly Bent – For a better understanding of the importance of bending your knees, and how much they should be bent, try a swing with your knees straight. Keep your weight balanced somewhat towards the balls of your feet and evenly distributed between your feet.
  4. Alignment to the Target – Your feet and shoulders should be aligned with the target for your shot, whether that’s a point on the fairway or the hole. For proper alignment, an imaginary line between your shoulders, and the toes of your shoes should point to your target. That way you’ll achieve ultimate precision when swinging the club.

To learn more about how to swing a golf club from a professional instructor at a premier Whitby golf club, get in touch with us here at Royal Ashburn Golf Club. If you liked this post, check out our last blog post on improving your confidence on the golf course.

3 Ways Golf Lessons Can Improve Your Game

Whether you’re a beginner or you golf every week, when you have a difficult round, the thought of taking golf lessons can pop into your mind. But that’s usually all it does. Pop into your mind and right back out.

One of the reasons many golfers don’t take lessons, even if they’ve benefited from them before, is the idea that the lessons are all about improving your swing.

Of course, developing a great swing is one of the main benefits of golf lessons. But it is just one of many that golfers of all abilities can enjoy.

How Golf Lessons Can Help Every Golfer

Needless to say, lessons are especially helpful for beginners. That’s because they have more to learn. But every golfer can learn something by taking lessons from a golf pro.

1. Reveals The Nuances of the Game

To think that golf lessons are just about a better swing is really cheating yourself out of learning so much more about the game. And getting the added enjoyment that comes from it. From the different approaches to the long and short games, to learning how to get back on track after a bad swing, hole or round, all will help lower your scores.

2. Immerses You in a Golf Conversation

Yes, you can visit the driving range and practice green to work on your swing on your own. But when you take lessons from a professional instructor, you engage in a conversation about golf. One that’s centered on your game. And one that can reveal parts of your game you might never think about on your own.

3. Reinvigorates Your Love of the Golf

Regardless of if you’ve ever had a lesson or ever will, you love golf. But imagine what happens if, after just one lesson, you learn something new. Something that injects a new level of enthusiasm for your game. And imagine if that happened after every lesson. Just the boost to your activity in and enthusiasm for the sport and how you play it can improve your game immensely.

The Royal Ashburn Golf Club offers private and semi-private lessons from CPGA professionals Dave Castellan and Justin Hawe. Contact us today to find out more about how golf lessons can improve your game.  

6 Tips for a First-Time Golfer

The biggest mistake anyone who wants to learn the game of golf can make is to avoid taking up the sport because of concerns about being a ‘first-time golfer’. Everyone on every golf course was a first-time golfer at some point.

Maybe you’re really interested in learning the game, or it would be a good career move, or you want to share yet another activity with your partner, family or friends. But whatever the reason, you owe it to yourself to learn the game properly and start to enjoy all the fun, healthy activity and companionship that golf has to offer.

To help you get into the swing of things (forgive us for that one!), here are a few tips to remember when you’re just starting out in golf.

1.Don’t Buy New Clubs Right Away

From the moment you start to golf, your game will constantly improve as long as you play regularly. Golf clubs can be a big investment. Good quality clubs are designed to help experienced golfers make better and/or more consistent shots. But their benefits will not help a first-time golfer learn to play any faster or better. And you have no way of knowing which are the best clubs for you until you learn more about the game and your style of play.

Instead, borrow a set of clubs or buy a used set to learn with. Then wait until you know more about the game and how you play it before investing in a new set of clubs.

2.Take Lessons

Hitting a golf ball properly means developing a good swing, and a good golf swing comes from developing good mechanics. If you start on your own, you can adopt bad mechanics that will be difficult to correct later on. Making the investment in lessons from professional instructors as soon as you begin to play the game will pay off in boosting your confidence, avoiding mistakes and learning the game faster and better.

3.Learn the Rules of the Game

If you think ‘hitting a birdie’ means you injured one of our fine feathered friends, well, you should brush up on the rules of the game. The more you know about the game and how it’s played, the more you will understand what you need to do and why you need to do it. And the more fun you will have.

4.Watch Golf on TV

There’s no better way to learn about the rules, how to swing and other parts of the game, like club selection, than by watching the best players in the world. They make it all look easy. But after you start to play, you will appreciate their level of skill and get a better idea of the direction you need to go with your own game.

5.Play!

Like anything you do, practice makes perfect. Take every opportunity you get to swing a club, whether it’s on the course or on the driving range. Especially if you invest in golf lessons, practicing helps you put into play everything you learn.

6.Let it Happen

Golf is a game in which you compete against yourself. Everyone learns to play at a different pace. If you feel you haven’t improved after your first few rounds, try not to be frustrated or discouraged. Regardless of what happened the last time you played, focus on having a better round next time.

If you would like to take private or semi-private lessons from the trained and certified golf instructors here at Royal Ashburn, get in touch with us today.

5 Reasons Why You Should Invest in Golf Lessons

Have you ever wondered why the top professionals in golf. Those competing for millions of dollars each week in tournaments around the world, have coaches? If nothing else, that fact is proof that everyone, regardless of how well they golf, or if they’ve ever golfed before, or how old they are, need golf lessons. This is why you should invest in golf lessons.

But the unfortunate truth is that too many golfers feel the only answer to learn how to play golf. Or to make their game better is to buy expensive clubs, or play more often, or analyze the pro swings on the Golf Channel hoping to spot something that will magically turn their game around.

But there’s one simple reason why better clubs, playing three times a week and/or trying to learn more about what goes into a good swing, are not the answer to making your game the best it can be.

Golf is an individual sport. And not ‘individual’ in the sense that singles tennis is an individual sport either.

Golf is just about the only sport where your main competition is yourself. That means the path to better play is unique to every golfer. That’s the basic reason why every golfer should invest in golf lessons. Without lessons, it’s very difficult to learn how to play properly and to perfect your game.

Here are just a few other reasons why you should invest in golf lessons

1. It’s the best way for beginners to learn golf

If you’re just taking up the sport, it’s more important to learn how to play golf properly versus other sports. From learning how to approach the game to understand the importance of club selection and the details of your grip, there are many minute details about the game. Not learning from the start how to do any one of them properly can mean you will never be able to play your best golf.

2. You can’t See what you’re doing right & wrong

With yourself as competition, golf is often cited as being a mental game as much or more than it is a physical game. It’s extremely difficult, if not impossible for a golfer to know exactly what was the difference in the swings that produced a perfect shot and a slice.

But professional golf instructors understand the mechanics of a swing, the importance of body positioning and every other aspect of a good swing. They will very quickly spot a problem in your swing that can make the difference between a flub and a great shot.

3. You’ll stop doing the wrong thing

This is why new clubs, or videos, or frequent play won’t help as much as you hope they will. Let’s say there’s a problem with your grip. Yes, getting a set of better clubs will help improve your game, but they’re not going to correct your grip. Yes, you’ll play better if you practice more often, but it won’t correct your grip. Yes, reading golf books, magazines and websites will give you more insights that could improve your game, but they won’t correct your grip problem.

What will correct your grip problem? Lessons from a golf pro who understands your particular problem.

4. It’s an Investment in Yourself

First, whether you’re a beginner or have played for years, it doesn’t make sense to invest in new clubs, a golf club membership or anything else golf-related if you’re not going to invest in learning to play the game better.

But you decided to give golf a try and fell in love with it for a reason. You enjoy challenging yourself. You look forward to playing a game in the great outdoors. You can’t think of anything else that feels quite like making clean contact with the ball and watching it rise through the air exactly as it should. You need the exercise.

No matter why you’re interested in or in love with the game of golf, with all of that riding on it, why wouldn’t you want to play better?

5. The Limited Golf Season in Ontario

Most local golfers will only get to play for six to eight months of the year. When the season finally arrives, you just want to get out there and play. You don’t want to spend too much time learning how to play or correcting problems with your game. Professional golf instruction is the fastest ways to learn or improve your game, so it’s even more important to get golf lessons in Ontario.

If you’re looking for one of the best places for golf lessons in Ontario, look no further than the Royal Ashburn Golf Club. Led by Director of Golf Instruction, Dave Castellan, every golf instructor at the Royal Ashburn Golf Academy are PGA of Canada golf professionals and trained and certified instructors.

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