Back To Basics
Four Steps To Laser Focus (for that perfect preshot routine)
Step 1: Observe. As you approach your shot, take in the entire environment, including your lie, yardage, wind, hazards and your intended target. There’s a lot of info to process, but with a little practice, it’s easy to do.
Step 2: See. Analyze the shot’s given circumstances. Take my situation here: Teeing off from a severely elevated tee box (“Lombard Street” at Moorpark Country Club in Moorpark, Calif.), the yardage book says I have 240 yards to the rough. If I hit my 5-wood (which normally goes 240), I’ll drive through the fairway (remember, downhill shots go farther). Therefore, I must come up with a “hard” yardage, or what the shot actually plays. In this case, I’ve subtracted 15 to 20 yards to account for the elevation change and have selected a 3-iron instead.
Step 3: Feel. See how I’ve just made a practice swing? I’m rehearsing the shot exactly how I want to execute it. All too often, golfers take practice swings that don’t resemble how the actual shot is going to be played. Don’t underestimate the importance of a practice swing! They create a feeling of the shot at hand. Now I’m going to take that feeling to the next step: execution.
Step 4: Trust. At this stage, you’re actually hitting the shot, so narrow your focus to a specific target, like I’m doing here (in this case, the 150-yard marker). If you’ve completed the first three steps correctly, then you’ll be able to trust your shot. Stay focused on an external target and execute by just letting go. Maintain a focus on what you want the shot to do, not on where you don’t want the shot to go.