Like any other sport, golf takes many years of practice and regular play to master. And even for those that have been playing it for long, there is always more to learn. For a novice, it can seem an overly complex game at first, and so it is common for many amateurs and beginners to make mistakes as they learn.
While some of these mistakes are inevitable, others result from lack of knowledge and bad habits. But, if you are serious about the sport and want to learn and improve your game, you need to avoid these 5 mistakes amateur golfers make.
#1 Failing to Warm Up
If you have not played golf before, it is easy to assume that it is just a sedate sport that will not cause any significant stresses to your muscles. But, this could not be further from the truth as golf will place a significant amount of stress on various parts of the body. You will feel some stress on your arms, back, shoulders, legs, and a few other body parts, and so it can be quite a physically demanding sport.
What all this means is that you need to warm up before you start playing to ensure that your body is ready for the physical stress ahead. Many amateurs do not know the importance of warming up before they start a round of golf, and so they will rarely do it. But, also note that warming up does not mean you need hours of exercises. Just a few minutes of gentle muscle stretching is often more than enough.
#2 Using Wrong Balls
For many amateurs, a good golf ball is one that is soft and expensive. However, the truth is that the high handicappers and beginner golfers need a ball that is designed to offer more distance and is also highly durable. The soft and pricey golf balls are for the more experienced and pro golfers as they have the right skills to use them.
A cheap and highly durable ball works better for amateurs as they get to use it for a long time, and it is also more affordable to replace. Also, these balls are designed to offer more distances which is something that many amateurs seem to struggle with. And so as an amateur, you should not go for a golf ball that looks good and feels soft on contact but something more functional that delivers long distances and is cheaper to replace.
#3 Not Checking Equipment before Play
Many amateur golfers do not remember to check their equipment before they head out to the course. And this is more common for those that do not play the sport often enough. At the end of the season or after a golfing weekend, many will put their golf bag to storage with its content and not bother to check the condition of the equipment and then just grab it the next time they need to head out to the course.
Failing to check your equipment can lead to disappointments and ruin your golf day or weekend completely. First, you can easily leave an important club behind such as the driver if you do not check your bag. Also, you can miss noticing a damaged club only for you to find out that the club is bad when lining up a shot which can be very frustrating.
#4 Overestimating Shot Distance
One cannot help but to get impressed with just how far the professional golfers playing in the tours hit with different clubs. But, as an amateur, you need to keep in mind that while it is possible for you to end up being better than Tiger Woods sometime in the future, you are still not him. And so you should not try to hit 220 yards with your 5-iron as you still do not have the skills and experience for this.
Even if at some point you used your driver to make a 250-yard shot, it does not mean that every shot you make will always yield the same result. It is important not to overestimate your shot distances because this will always lead to disappointments and can also affect your learning process.
#5 Lack of Proper Etiquette
Golf is often described as the sport for gentlemen, and so proper etiquette is essential. However, some amateurs tend to overlook this, and so you will find some behaving inappropriately when on the course. There are some things that you should not do when playing such as shouting or talking loudly when others are playing as this can distract them and ruin their shot.
Also, even though you are still a beginner, make sure that you play at a decent speed and give way to a quicker group of golfers to play through if you cannot speed up your play.
Golf is a complex sport by all definitions and you cannot learn everything at once or become a pro player instantly. It takes a lot of work and practice to improve your game and overall performance. But, avoiding the 5 mistakes amateur golfers make is a good starting point for any amateur that wants to learn and enjoy the sport.
Golf Life Contributor
AUTHOR BIO: While being a well-experienced golfer now, Brian Jame also works as an editor at a golf website to deliver tips and drills as well as buying guides to many other golfers. Stay tuned with lasergolfrangefinder.com to keep yourself updated to the latest golf information!