Common golf mistakes are easy enough to spot on TV or at the professional level, but it’s harder to identify these issues when you’re playing by yourself.
However, these mistakes are so common among amateur players that they can be a real hindrance to your ability to play well. If you make one of these five common mistakes in golf, here’s how to fix it.
Picking up Your Head Too Soon
This is a mistake I see a lot when people first learn how to strike a ball with their driver properly. It results from wanting to pick up the head too soon for the player to follow through and see where his shot ends up. What will happen is that the ball will come out a lot less powerfully and often a lot lower.
The fix: Don’t follow through too soon; save your finish until you have completed the swing. With time and practice, this mistake should correct itself naturally.
Hitting From Behind The Ball
Another common mistake is getting excited about hitting the ball long right off the bat. Usually, it happens when a player tries to generate too much power by swinging back over his shoulder instead of before the ball. It usually makes for quick, powerful swings that send balls flying into thick rough or other hazards.
The fix: Keep your head down and hit the ball first, then aim at your target instead of winding up and swinging hard. By taking a proper swing, you will allow yourself to hit cleanly and become more accurate every time.
Pushing Your Chips
This common mistake gets me almost every time I play the game. It’s very easy because all you have to do is aim for the flag and then try to miss it by pushing the ball with your clubhead. The result: Ball goes flying right into the cup.
The fix: Remember which kind of chip shot you need (high loft for close shots, low loft for long shots). Also, make sure you keep your head down throughout the entire swing; if not, swinging away with your head up will only mess you up.
This mistake usually happens when you’re trying to hit the ball off a tee or standing over a shot where it’s rolling toward you. You try to put on the breaks by slowing down, but here’s what ends up happening. The clubhead behind you keeps going because there was no follow-through, and so instead of hitting the ball flush, all you get for your troubles is a stinger that goes nowhere near where it should have gone.
The fix: This mistake takes some time to correct because changing your swing just slightly can take away all power from your drive. Just keep practicing until you find the right balance between powering through and slowing down.
Swinging Too Fast
We all get excited when we see the ball go flying, but sometimes it’s more of a curse than a blessing. When you swing quickly, you tend to lose control because there is no time to compensate for an error in aim or distance.
The fix: If you’re hitting your shots too far or not far enough, try practicing on your backswing instead of just swinging through the ball for power. Make sure that your clubhead is traveling at least parallel with the ground before contact, or else you won’t carry as far as you should. With this practice, along with patience and determination, common golf mistakes can be corrected!