I Want To Get Better!

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by Rea Schuessler

What golfer does not want to see improvement at some level? The obvious answer is we all do! So how do we truly do this? Hopefully after digesting the following information you will have an idea or plan that will possibly make 2016 your best year ever!

The first thing we must do is take a realistic inventory of our current golf game. Are we satisfied with the different areas that will take us to the “next” level?

So take a few moments and write down and rank the following areas: putting, chipping, pitching, wedge play , sand play and long game. Strategy and mental game have a big impact also on your score. Try to create enough categories that give you a realistic snapshot of trends good or bad relative to your game.

Below is an example but feel free to create your own.

PuttingGolf Practice
Short Putts – Up to 5 feet.
Medium Putts – 5 feet to 20 feet.
Long Putts – Outside 20 feet.
Wedge Play
10 – 20 Yards
20 – 30 Yards
30 – 40 Yards and up to your full yardage with each wedge.
Sand Game
Iron Play
9 – 7
6 – 4
Hybrids / Fairways
Commitment/Strategy relative to each shot.

After each category simply check either: Acceptable or Needs Improvement
In the areas that are marked needs improvement rank the areas that need the most improvement and budget your practice time relative to those areas. Be smart when budgeting your practice sessions and your weak areas should become stronger which will lead to lower scores.

I would like to add seeking out a PGA Professional to help with evaluating your game would be very helpful. We are lucky to have many along the Gulf Coast that would love to help out! The best players in the world use an extra set of eyes so why shouldn’t you? There is also an app named ShotbyShot that I use to help my students better evaluate their strengths and weaknesses. It is based on the Strokes Gained Statistic analysis that The PGA Tour uses. The great thing about ShotbyShot is that it will compare your game with other golfers in your handicap range which is a realistic snapshot of what needs improvement. There is a monthly fee but well worth it!

Good luck and let’s make 2016 a great year!



Rea Schuessler is the Lead Instructor of
the Gulf Shores Golf Academy. He has
been named “One of the Top Teachers in
Alabama” by Golf Digest.
He can be contacted at (251) 978-1625 or