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Shooting 90-94 Consistently, which would you work on more?

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Hi all. I've been improving my game quite a lot lately, and FINALLY got my golf scoring app working properly. I went from shooting in the 120's this spring to breaking 90 just a few weekends ago. I am pretty good and long off the tee. Since I upgraded my driver about a month ago, I haven't hit a drive shorter than 250, and get about 275-280 when I really get ahold of one (2-3 times a round.) I seem to be fairly accurate off there as well. I hit 6 of 13 fairways when I played yesterday.

However, I had only 1 GIR, which was a par 3 that was about 5 feet from the pin, pin high. I had an average of 1.92 putts per hole, but I still had 54 shots that were chips or putts. I had only a couple of 3 putts, and a few 1 putt pars. My scrambling was only 3/17 holes. I don't hit it OB, and I don't hit it into hazards, so I am frustrated that I am still shooting in the 90-94 range frequently.

What would I benefit more from practicing: approach shots or chipping. I feel like I'm a decent putter, and I am a decent short gamer, except for the 2 or 4 shots a round I dont trust myself and commit to the shot and end up decellerating. How much can I really improve from here? Would I be better off if I could hit more GIR's and had to chip less?

Thanks in advance for your input, everyone.

PS, that's not an Internet 250-285 either. I have GPS proof. I was measured at a 105mph swing, but have a longer shafted X- flex driver now, so I am capable of reaching 110-115 when I really get into it, not that it has anything to do with this thread, I just have read people's comments on other threads.)

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Based on my personal challenges since I began playing a couple years ago I would say no one spends too much time practicing chipping and putting. This sunk in for me more recently while watching golf on tv. The guy who is sinking putts is at the very least in contention. I would spend your time on the practice green.

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1) Keep track of your putts per round, how many putts do you have per round on average? I try to keep it under 30 per round.
2) Keep track of your chips around the green to get up and down for one putts, scrambling currently with 3 out 17 attempts, imagine if you improved that by what your scores will look like.

If you focused 90% of your practice to chipping and putting you will see the improvement in the stats above.

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Ballstriking. You'll hit more greens and the greens you miss will be closer making for easier up-and-downs.

Ballstriking is the #1 separator between higher handicappers and lower handicappers.

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The guys I know who shot in the 80s and high 70s don't do it by scrambling and one-putting. They do it by getting on the green in regulation, and two-putting.

Approach shots need to get on!

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I agree with Iacas and pittpanther. Even for those missed greens, there is a big difference between being just barely off the green and ten feet or more. Obviously you want more GIRs, but your up/down percentage will drop some if your misses aren't as bad. Of course it helps to give yourself a bigger target by aiming at the center of the green too.

SRJ

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I had a couple of the holes that were just on the fringe that I putted, but I don't count them as GIRs or putts, but maybe 2 or 3. It depends on how far away I am as to where I'm aimed. If it's 125 and less, Im probably aiming for the 3rd of the green the pin is on, side to side, and I always try to play the yardage to the 3rd of the green the flag is on in depth. At 125-160 I'm trying to makE the distance to the third of the flag is on but towards the center. Anywhere longer than that and I'm happy just to make the green. Obviously that doesn't work most of the time.

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If you're trying to break 90, I would say you can do it with the game you have right now if you think more carefully about the shots you hit and where you hit them.

If you're looking to get down to 80, though, better ball striking, like others have said, is the solution.

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If your driving is as good as you say it is, your iron game must be shocking. With the distances you claim to be hitting, and you saying your putting and short game are OK, you clearly need to work on your second shots. You must be missing a lot of greens from 160 yards and in.

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I am going to say shot management. You haven't been playing long enough to learn the pitfalls golf courses throw at you. What broke me into the 80s and 70s was playing smart. Yes, the mechanics have to be there. But, you can minimize the potential for big errors by avoiding those situations all together. Aim for the fattest part of the green. Chip to give yourself a short putt. Just because you can hit your 7 iron X amount of yards on a perfect swing, hit the 6 nice and easy.

Since I usually can not reliably end the hole unless I am under 10 feet from the hole, I play to that end. You will always be working on your swing and ball striking. Don't forget about playing the game part of golf.

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The guys I know who shot in the 80s and high 70s don't do it by scrambling and one-putting. They do it by getting on the green in regulation, and two-putting.

I am definitely one of those. I chip and putt really well and rarely need to 2 putt. I lose my strokes on hitting my tee shot into the woods, then precisely hitting my irons between several branches to get it close.

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Don't try force iron shots onto the green.
I know a load of people who take out 6i at 150m (165 yards) and their real 6i distance is 145m and try force out the extra distance by swinging 110%.
Take out the 5i and swing smooth.

If you hit the green and 3 putt you get a bogey, nothing wrong with it.
Miss the green, duff your chip and then 3 putt from there and you've got a double.

My best days are when I just relax and aim for the middle of the green instead of going for the pin tucked into a tricky position.

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Chip putt chip putt chip putt

Nah. He could spend five minutes or do something like change his pre-shot routine to pick landing spots or something and improve his chipping a little. He's not going to go from shooting 94 to shooting 84 by improving his chipping and putting.

Guy needs to hit more greens or be closer to the ones he misses (which will "improve" his chipping and putting stats more than working on his chipping and putting will prob'ly do).

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I have to also say really work on your approach shots. To add something else though, the one thing that helped me was obviously figuring out your club distances. I spent many many hours hitting irons repeatedly figuring out how far each of them went. Also working different swings with each iron. (3/4 swing, 1/2 swing, punch, etc.) If you look in your bag the ideal situation is to have a full swing shot every time. Realistically that wont happen on the course, so you have to know each shot you could have. It takes a ton of practice but if you can bump that GIR up from 1 a round to say 5 or 6 a round, you will notice a huge difference on the scorecard. Also looking at your club list, do you have a gap wedge or do you go from pitching to 56?

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No, I don't carry a gap wedge. I've been planning on addingthat in over the winter if I find a good deal. Maybe a Tom Watson 3 wedge set. It definitely has become an issue for me with the 47*-52* jump. I can hit a PW 125, and my 56 goes 100. I have faced a ton of 110-115 yd shots lately after hittin a good drive, and it's an akward length to hit. The one I always seem to find that distance on (no. 18), has a gully in front that's about 30 ft deep and has a false front. I can't club down and take a 3/4 nine iron and run it up because it ends up at the bottom.

I like the idea of getting distances for different length swings from clubs. My club has only 180 members, and it's easy to find a hole with no one on it for an hour or so during the week, so I think I'll practice those shots for a while and see what I come up with. I want to make a yardage book like the pro's have and try to trace out breaks on the greens and everything. That may help considerably.

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Note: This thread is 3703 days old. We appreciate that you found this thread instead of starting a new one, but if you plan to post here please make sure it's still relevant. If not, please start a new topic. Thank you!

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