With Kevin Na’s problems at the Players Championship last month still fresh in minds of many golf fans, it’s worth the time to focus once again on an effective pre-shot routine. Bob Beach, head professional at Braintree Municipal Golf Course, weighs in.
“A simple pre-shot routine is a way of putting what you do to prepare for a golf swing on automatic pilot. A routine is nothing more than repeated actions in sequence. The first sequence or step should be to place your hands on the golf club. The golfer should do this while standing straight up a few steps behind the ball, facing the target. With your elbows gently touching your ribs, elevate the club to a vertical position. This is a great position to feel the proper grip pressure. The club should be held lightly in the fingers so the golfer can feel the weight in the head of the club.
“The second step is to locate your target. This is easy to do from your position directly behind the ball. Slowly walk up to your ball and aim the face of your club on a straight line to your target. Keep that picture of your target in your mind’s eye as your natural eye looks at the ball.
“The final step is to settle into your stance and get comfortable. If you are comfortable, it is the best time to swing the club and get the ball flying toward your target. It is my experience that if you place the body in the proper position through a simple routine, you can give your full attention to what the club is doing. Set the body, swing the club.’’