The modern Tour Professional is meticulous in their approach to the game of golf whereas you are not, here are some examples.
Here we take a look at nine things Tour Professionals are doing that you are not. Don’t try to deny it…. You’re not! Here are some examples to prove it:
Arriving at the course early
The tournament professional will arrive at the course at least 90 minutes before their tee time.
They’ll get their equipment together in a relaxed way, stroll to the range to complete a regimented warm-up routine before spending 15 minutes on the putting green grooving their stroke.
You screech into the car park four minutes before your tee off time.
In a thoroughly un-relaxed and disorganised way you bundle your clubs out of the boot, throw your shoes on without tying the laces and sprint to the first tee, a half-eaten sandwich hanging from your mouth.
The tournament pro hits a smooth and controlled opening tee shot because they’ve fully switched into golfing mode.
You hit a wild pull hook into the cabbage because you’re wondering if you remembered to lock the front door.
Practising with purpose
Practice doesn’t make perfect, it makes permanent.
Only perfect practice makes perfect.
The tournament pro knows exactly what they want to achieve when they go into a practice session.
They might be looking to iron out a kink in the swing or engrain a particular shot shape.
They will pick an exact target and focus on it, and they will not be satisfied if they don’t find it.
You head to the local range, purchase 100 balls and bludgeon them into oblivion.
You’re not even really sure where you’re aiming but if, it’s a good strike, you’ll convince yourself that it’s ended exactly where you planned.
By the end of your “practice” session, all you’ve succeeding in doing is slightly wrenching your shoulder.
Keeping their clubs clean
The tournament pro knows the importance of clean grooves and clean grips.
To get the maximum from their equipment, they (or their caddy more likely) will keep their tools in tip-top shape so they will have maximum effect.
Your clubs look like you’ve been using them to weed the borders in your back garden.
The last time you achieved any backspin was 1986 and it’s not surprising as your grooves are filled with 19 year’s-worth of detritus.
Understanding their limitations
The tour pro is very good at golf, but there’s a limit to their ability.
They know how far they can hit the ball, and they know what shots are impossible.
That tree is too high to get over from this close, or, that carry is too long to make into this wind.
You truly believe that, perhaps just this one time, you can produce something that defies all logic, possibly even the laws of physics.
The tour pro will drop just one shot, while you will make a nine.
Seeing a coach
The golf tour pro is a master of the game, but they recognise they don’t know it all.
Even the very best will seek the advice of someone with a trained eye to point out weaknesses or opportunities for improvement.
They know that to get the very most out of their games, a coach can find that extra 5%.
You’ve never had a lesson, and don’t believe in them.
“I know my own game, and nobody can tell me otherwise.”
The thing is: You’re swing is way off plane and your rhythm seems to have been inspired by something obscure you’ve heard on “Jazz Club,” your set-up is poor, your grip is weak, and your attack is way too steep…
“I know that, but I tell you – I know my own game and how to work with it…”
Working on weaknesses
The tour pro will dedicate extra time to an area of their game that the stats show could be better.
If they’re losing shots with the flat stick, they’ll head to the putting green, while if their driving is off, they’ll target the range.
You can’t chip but you’ve never visited a short game area – too scary – “I’ll just focus on hitting 7-irons, I love that club!”
Using exactly the right kit
Custom-fitting used to be the preserve of the tour pro but it’s available to everyone now.
But the amateur golfer is not always willing to believe the numbers.
The tour pro will utilise whatever equipment gives them the advantage, whatever shaft, ball compression, putter type… Whatever…
You’ve always played stiff shafts; you don’t care what the computer says.
“What do you mean my swing speed isn’t quick enough to compress that ball? If it’s good enough for Rory, it’s good enough for me.”
Avoiding compounding mistakes
The tour pro seldom follows one poor shot with another one.
They will take their medicine and try and extricate themselves from difficult situations with the minimum of damage.
Even if this means accepting a penalty, they will do it.
You truly believe you can still get out of there with a par.
Wait a minute, that rough is knee-high and you can’t even see the ball!
A penalty drop could take you to that clear area giving you a shot at the green.
“No way – I can shift this son of a … – Hey, where did it go?”
Unfortunately, this is the fundamental thing a tour pro does that you don’t.
Well, not quite, because at some point in your round you will have shot 65.