Like the pros, you’re itching to sink more birdies, but there’s a snag. You’re not keen on shelling out for pricey lessons. Maybe you’re a DIY kind of person. You’ve successfully tackled home improvement projects like remodeling your bathroom or redesigning your kitchen. So why can’t you apply that same DIY spirit to your golf game?
Though I’d typically recommend learning the basics from a professional, I get your predicament. But the good news is there are Ways to Get Better at Golf Without Lessons.
In this post, I’ve compiled a list of 9 strategies for you to try. Think of this as your personal guide to improving your golf game without the hefty price tag of professional lessons. You’ll discover practical tips and tricks that you can implement right away. So, why wait any longer? Let’s dive in and elevate your golf game to the next level.
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How to Get Better at Golf Without Lessons
Invest Time, Not Money
How can I learn golf without lessons? We hear you – you do not want to invest hundreds of dollars in golf lessons but to make true gains, you have to invest something, so invest your time. Use your local driving range to improve your ball striking and find a short game area to hone your chipping and putting. Spend the majority of your time on the practice green. You can cover up for a lot of poorly struck drives and irons if your short game is above average. Getting up and down and 1-putts will help your scorecard.
Swing Short, Not Long
In almost every situation you encounter on the course, a shorter swing is better than a longer one. Keep your backswing short, and you will have more control. When putting, you never want your backstroke to be long because this will cause you to decelerate. If you are having a rough day on the course, tighten it up.
Be sure to Experiment
If you have been watching the PGA tour lately, you have probably seen some very different ways to play the game. Bryson DeChambeau has added 40 pounds and is trying to overpower the game. Matthew Wolff has come straight out of college and immediately did well on tour with a very odd swing.
There are a lot of different ways to get the ball in the hole. When you go to the driving range, try different swings and setups. Trial-and-error. You may find something that helps you hit the ball solid. It doesn’t have to work for everyone – just for you!
Keep Perspective and Stay Positive
Golf can be a frustrating game to learn. It will sometimes feel like you take one step forward and two steps back. Try your best to keep perspective.
Regardless of what you shoot, you enjoy an afternoon outside with friends. Try to remember the good shots and forget about the bad ones. Set realistic goals for yourself. Stay patient. The game of golf is a lifetime journey, not a sprint and a massive amount of the game is played in your head.
Consider delving into books that tackle the mental aspect of golf. Often, it’s just as challenging as the physical game itself.
Don’t Trust Your Friends
You will notice quickly that everyone on the course likes to advise other players on their swings, but be careful who you listen to!
If your buddy is struggling to shoot 100, he might not be the best source for golf knowledge. The random guy on the driving range is probably not a certified golf instructor. It is ok to listen; just make sure you take this type of advice with a grain of salt.
Be a Student of the Game
if you love golf, tons of free resources are available to help you learn. If you watch professional tournaments on the weekend, notice how they play different shots and approach different course situations.
The conversation between the player and the caddie can be extremely insightful. If you want some help with your fundamentals, some of the top instructors in the world share this info online, so research and try some of their advice.
Do you have a library card? There are some awesome golf books on how to play or how to approach the game mentally.
Make Sure Your Hands are Forward
This is a very basic swing tip, but a common mistake for beginners or high-handicappers is their hands are behind the ball. Regardless if you are hitting chips shots or drives, make sure you press your hands forward. This will promote better wrist action and help you hit the ball solid more often. You should also make sure your hands are not back during your putting stroke.
Definitely Track Your Game
The best way to improve is to understand where you are losing strokes. How many putts do you average per round? How many fairways do you hit? How often do you putt for birdie? How often do you 1-putt or get up-and-down?
Tracking these stats over time will tell you where to focus your practice time and allow you to see improvements. Investing in a portable launch monitor may be a good idea to get some additional insight.
Don’t be Afraid to Celebrate Your Golf Achievements
When you accomplish something on the golf course take a moment to appreciate it and celebrate. These achievements do not have to be only about your score. The first time you play 9 holes without losing a ball. Your first par, birdie, or eagle. The first time you break 120, 110, 100, or 90. The more you enjoy the game the better you will play.
Do not expect perfection, and enjoy celebrating your small achievements.
Can you get good at golf without lessons?
Yes, you do not need expensive lessons to enjoy the game of golf. You can be self-taught and work your way down to a low handicapper. It simply takes time, effort, and patience. Be realistic with yourself, and do not expect immediate results. There are no naturals in golf. No one picks up a set of clubs the first time and shoots even par.
When you have time to practice, focus and try to improve a little with every session. Do not take the game too seriously and do not make it all about your score. Enjoy your time outdoors with new or old friends. If you stick with it, your shots and scores will improve. Keep it simple. Hit it. Find it. Hit it again.
Mike Harris is a former college golfer and dedicated father of two talented junior golfers. With a passion for the sport that began in his own childhood, Mike now focuses on helping his children, Avery and Olivia, navigate the world of junior golf. He’s eager to share tips, advice, and insights with other families on their own golf journeys. Join Mike as he tees off into the exciting realm of junior golf, providing guidance to parents and kids alike.