When you’re not playing on the course, you must continue practicing your golf skills. This will prepare you for the next match. It also helps maximize your time on the field during your practice matches. Regardless if you’re a pro or just playing for fun, the best way to practice golf at home we discussed here will surely up your game.
Drills you can do at home
The best way to practice golf at home is by performing indoor or outdoor drills. So even if you can’t play for a long time, you can stay in shape for your next match. The following are some of these simple drills:
Putting practice is the simplest and easiest drill you can do at home. Most of your shots will land on the green where the putting stroke is much needed. For novice golfers, it may seem like an easy shot given the short distance. However, even the likes of Justin Thomas struggle with putts.
Putting requires distance control and a skillful reading of the green. So to prepare yourself for your next game, putting drills are necessary
You can do this in your garage or your small yard. You just need a putting turf, a golf ball, and your putter. After that, mark 3-feet increments from the hole/target until you reach 15 feet. Next, put balls on each mark. Once set, start putting from the ball nearest to the hole.
This first drill helps in distance control and consistency. You can repeat this drill for as many sets as you want. Daily putting drills will help in muscle memory and better club control.
We also recommend doing it outdoors so you’ll be exposed to natural elements. Direct sunlight, wind, and the structures around you will affect your performance on the green. This is what we’ll try to simulate on outdoor putting.
*Impact Position Drills
For those who want to improve their swing posture, the impact position drill will help a lot. Such a drill can be done after a half-swing – swinging then stopping upon impact. It will help you check if you’re performing full swing drills with the proper impact position.
Many amateur golfers make the mistake of rehearsing their swing without considering the accuracy of the impact position. Worse, it will show on their actual games.
For the impact position drill, you have to drape a towel on your clubhead. On your set up position, press the clubhead into the towel until your club flexes. You’ll notice that your body is moving into the posture of a pro golfer.
If the towel method doesn’t work, we recommend that you press the clubhead into the wall instead. Keep pressing until your club flexes.
This drill is a great way to improve your muscle memory for the right impact position. The last thing you want to happen in the field is missing a drive shot.
Next, we have the line drill. This is helpful for those who are having a hard time hitting within the 100-yard range. What you need here is your green turf, chalk for marking, and your wedges.
First, set a backline, which will serve as your mark on where to stand. After that, mark three lines on your line, about 3 to 4 inches away from each other.
Once you’re all set, get your wedge, stand in front of your backline, and position your club just before the first line. From there, set up for a swing and try to hit the third (farthest line) without hitting the two other lines. Make sure that you touch the turf of the third line. Keep on repeating this drill until you nail the target.
If you fail to hit the turf, that means you lost your posture during the swing. Remember to stay on your posture until you finally hit the turf.
This drill does wonders for your accuracy and control. Again, we recommend that you do this in an outdoor setting as well.
A little confused? Here’s a quick video for the line drill:
The common mistake that novice golfers commit is losing the connection between the arms and the shoulder. During a swing, it’s important that the shoulders move the arms and that the arms don’t go independently.
Losing this connection will lead to poor shots and even arm injuries. If you’re guilty of doing this mistake, you can fix the problem using the connection drill. What you need is a golf towel, a wedge iron, and a few golf balls.
First, fold the golf towel in four in a lengthwise manner. After that, tuck the towels beneath the armpits so the rest of the towel is horizontal to your chest.
While the towel is sandwiched between your arms and upper body, perform a swing position. Take note that the towel has to stay intact with no ends coming off.
After that, perform a backswing and see if the towel falls. If it does, that means you’re losing the connection of your shoulder and arms. This is something that we don’t want to happen.
Keep repeating the backswing until you can comfortably keep the towel intact. Avoid squeezing the towel too much as it will affect your posture. You must keep your proper swing posture at all times.
Once the towel is no longer dropping, perform a short shot of around 100 yards or less. From there, you can increase your distance without dropping the towel.
In this video, Dave Marsh shows us how the connection drill is done:
Another mistake that many golfers do is flicking on the ball during a chip shot. Many novice players don’t trust the loft of their club, which leads them to arch their wrists in an effort to lift the ball.
This is a wrong shot and the flicky movement will drive your ball in the wrong direction. If this is also your problem, you can try this chipping drill. It’s very easy to do. All you need is a turf, a sanding wedge, and golf balls.
On your setup position, perform a backswing first to ensure that you have a good connection with your shoulders. After that, perform a chip shot without bending your wrist. But instead of making a full swing, release your right hand (left if you’re left-handed) after the impact. This will prevent you from over-arching the ball with your arms.
Do the release in a relaxed and natural manner and let the other hand carry on with the follow-through.
Repeat this drill many times until you can fully utilize the loft of your club. After that, perform more chip shots without releasing any hand.
In need of visuals? In this video, Mark Wood shows us how the chipping drill is done:
Our last home drill here is the mirror drill. This is a great way to check if you’re doing the right posture. Such a drill is helpful if a mentor isn’t around to check it out for you.
For the mirror drill, you need a full-body mirror where you can see your whole body. This way, you can look at yourself as you set up and fix your alignment. You can perform backswings to see how you hold the club and what you need to adjust.
This drill is a self-check so you have to watch out for potential mistakes. As you do this, be mindful of your surroundings so you won’t hit anybody or break something.
During this drill, focus on how you turn your body during a swing. There’s no need to hit a ball. This drill is meant for you to see how you move on each shot. That way, you can spot any bad habits and fix it right away.
In this video, Rick Shiels tells us why mirror drills are very important for golfers:
More home tips to improve your golfing
The best way to practice golf at home isn’t just about being on the turf. The following are additional tips we recommend if you’re bent to become a better golfer.
*Play a mobile golf game
While playing a mobile or console golf game will not help with your actual shots, it’s a good way to set your mind into the sport. This is very helpful for beginners, too, if they are still grasping the concept of the game. Also, these games have 3D simulations of terrains that will somehow help you in the course.
It’s a great past time too, not to mention that you can compete with an actual player.
*Read golf books
Reading the tips and tricks of professionals is a great way to improve your game. It will also give you an idea of what to do next for your succeeding drills.
There are many worthy golf books that you can read. Our personal favorite is “Ben Hogan’s Five Lessons” where he discussed the fundamentals and principles of the sport. It’s a great starter book for novices who want to start in a good footing. Aside from written content, this book also contains sketches and diagrams so you can easily understand the winning strategies of golf.
Are you getting burned out and frustrated over missed shots? Before you even consider quitting, we suggest that you read Dr. Bob Rotella’s Golf Is Not A Game of Perfect. He is the performance consultant of Nick Price, Pat Bradley, and many professional golfers inside and outside of the U.S.A.
In this book, Dr. Rotella helps you find the right mindset for the game. It helps you have a winning attitude each time you enter the golf course.
Other good selections include Zen Golf by Dr. Joseph Parent and Be A Player by Pia Nilsson & Lynn Marriott.
*Watch the pros
If you don’t want to read or play anything, you may want to catch up with the hottest golf matches. For newbies, obsess with PGA Tour matches to know more about the sport. Also, you’ll get to see the different techniques that each pro golfer uses on their game.
Watching golf matches will inspire you to become better. Also, it’s a great reference for the shots you’re mastering.
Looking for a great match to marathon this weekend? If you haven’t seen it yet, don’t forget to watch the 101st PGA Championship at the Bethpage State Park featuring Tiger Woods, Brooks Koepka, and Francesco Molinari.
Home Exercises to Improve Your Golf Performance
Aside from keeping yourself busy on golf drills, you should also stay in shape for the sport. Golf may not be as physically demanding as football or basketball, but it requires excellent muscle health. The best way to practice golf at home is by ensuring that you’re also in good shape.
The following are some of the exercises we swear by in strengthening your arms, hips, and upper body for the game.
*Medicine Ball Throw
If you’re working out on the gym or at home, you can use a medicine ball to strengthen your upper body muscles. A good drill here is the Squat to Side Toss. With this routine, you need a partner or at least a wall where you can bounce the ball.
While holding the medicine ball, perform a half squat with your legs parted for support. From the half squat, stand up and toss the ball with force to your partner or the wall. This exercise engages your upper body and legs to build rotary power. It’s also a great drill to strengthen stance.
Another great exercise you can do with a medicine ball is the Sit-up and Throw. You and your partner should sit facing each other. From there, lay flat on your back while holding the medicine ball above your head. Next, perform a sit-up then toss the medicine ball as you raise your upper body. While doing this, keep your feet flat on the ground.
Looking for more medicine ball routines for golfers? In this video, Golf Fitness Specialist Carolina Romero shows us more exercises:
*Dumbbell Bench Press
If you notice that you have weak shoulders, the Dumbbell Bench Press is a great exercise. This will help boost the muscles in your shoulders and arms while strengthening your core. It will also help in promoting shoulder stability and keeping the connection on your arms.
To do this, you only need one dumbbell and a trusty bench press. We don’t recommend improvising with a makeshift bench as it could be dangerous.
While lying on your back, hold the dumbbell up with your arm straight. Next, slowly move it down and pause when the dumbbell is parallel to your torso.
You may notice that the other part of your body is trying to fight the force of the dumbbell. This is a good thing as it stretches your muscles and keeping the core work going.
After several reps, try it on the other hand. However, avoid using an extreme amount of weight as you’re only holding it on one hand. Also, there’s no need to tire yourself out with one-arm dumbbell presses. Just perform about 12 reps an arm and call it a day.
If you want to know more about this routine, here’s Max Tapper to show you how it’s done:
Hand walks are a great exercise to stretch your arms. It can help prevent golfer’s elbow and other injuries as long as it’s done right.
Also, hand walks are not handstands. To do a hand walk, you start within a push-up position. From there, walk into your hands until you’re bending on all fours. From there, walk on all fours until you feel a stretch on your arms.
If you have tight muscles, we recommend that you warm up first. Performing a hand walk with tight muscles will give you sprain. That’s not what we want to happen, especially if a match is only days away.
Seated rotation help develop a smoother twist on your trunk. This is much needed during powerful swings. It also boosts rotational mobility to prevent injuries.
To do this, straddle a chair and hold any golf club behind your back in line with your shoulders. Your palms should be facing up when gripping both ends.
Once in position, twist to the right until the end of the golf club touches the side of the chair. You should do this on the other side then perform several repetitions.
If you don’t have a chair available, you can do this on the door jamb. The jamb should be centered in your body. Aim to reach the sides of the door job on every twist.
Here’s a short video demonstration to guide you:
To boost the stability of your body on every swing, you should take the time to perform hip crossover drills. You don’t need any equipment to do this, plus you can do some reps at home. What hip crossover does is simulate the hip motion during a backswing as well as the follow-through. The torque you feel on this hip exercise improves your range of motion and rotary abilities.
To do a hip crossover, you should lie on your back with your feet planted on the ground. You should part your feet widely then start bending the left leg to the left. The aim here is the reach the ground without losing the bend on your knee. Do this one the other leg as well.
In this video, you’ll see how a hip crossover is done properly:
Glute bridges are great drills in strengthening your lower back while stretching the hamstrings. For this routine, you have to lie on your back again with your arms spread on 45 degrees from your body. Your palms should be facing up with bent legs.
Some plant their soles on the ground while others tip on their heels. Once you’re in this position, lift your hip until you create a plane angle on your body.
In this video, Charlee Atkins shows us the right way of doing glute bridges, also known as hip raises:
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is it safe to hit a golf ball to a net?
A: As long as you set the net in a safe spot, it can be used for golf drills at home. In fact, many use this tool to boost their swing skills when a course isn’t always accessible.
Q: How do you practice golf in the winter?
A: During winter, you can perform indoor drills at home. Above, we discussed some simple drills that will keep you busy golfing even if it’s snowing outside.
Q: How many hours do pro golfers practice?
A: Professional golfers spend a great deal of time practicing. Tiger Woods used to practice 13 hours a day before according to sources. If you’re serious in improving your skills, the ideal practice is 6 hours a day for five days. Take note that resting is also important so you won’t overuse your body.
Q: Are driving range mats bad for your club?
A: Many pro golfers avoid using driving range mats since it can damage the clubheads. Drive range mats are made of fake grass that’s stiffer than real ones. If you are to use drive range mats, consider using a tee to prevent the club from scraping through the stiff surface.
Q: How can I become a better golfer?
A: Practice is the key if you want to improve your game. Even pro golfers don’t stop practicing their shots to improve their performance. As much as you can read guides and tips, the application of such ideas is the defining factor for your game.
The best way to practice golf at home is by mastering the basics before moving on to more complicated drills. Above, we discussed some useful drills that you can perform in your spare time. We also paired it with some workout routines so you can stay in shape for your next match. Remember, being good at golf isn’t just about practice; you should also have the right physique for the game.