Whether you’re a woman interested in getting into golf, or a female golfer who has played for a few years, there are certain things you should know in order to play your best.
While it’s important to work on your swing and the feel of playing, a major component to improving is simply having the confidence to play on the course amongst your peers.
So below, I dig into 10 ways female golfers (like me!) can enjoy the learning process and feel comfortable around other players — even if you are just a beginner.
1. Find a teacher who’s good with new golfers
The best coaches can teach any golfer how to play better. With that said, there are some teachers who prefer teaching beginners more than others.
Personally speaking, I love teaching beginners because it’s fun to explain the fundamentals of the golf swing, and then see how students put it all together in order to swing it the right way.
So find a teacher in your area with a strong reputation for working with beginners (like one of GOLF’s Top 100!). They’ll have the patience and knowledge of putting together a plan that’s best for you.
2. Get out there!
Sometimes, you just have to put yourself out there — even if it feels a bit intimidating.
Forget about the result, and just start with lessons or a clinic. This will help you work on your skills before actually playing a round.
Once you’re comfortable enough to make a tee time, put faith in your instructor to guide you around the course.
3. Be a great listener
A valuable skill to have when learning something new is being a great listener.
While you may not be able to consume and apply everything your teacher teaches you, by giving them your full attention and listening, you’ll create trust and show them that you’re serious about the task.
4. It’s OK (and expected) to miss
When you’re learning something new, it’s expected that you’ll miss plenty of shots — so be patient and trust the process.
This is important because you need to be willing to do things that feel uncomfortable and different. If nothing feels different, than you likely haven’t changed anything — and your scores will reflect that.
Any discomfort will usually disappear once a student starts seeing the results of their hard work.
5. Invest in the lesson
In many cases, you get what you pay for with golf lessons — so, of course, better teachers will save you tons of time and frustration. However, they can be intimidating to some newer players.
Another, sometimes more cost-effective option is to share a lesson with a friend or attend a clinic with the teacher of your choice, which makes learning something new a little more fun.
6. Celebrate your success
Golf is hard, so don’t forget to celebrate any success you experience.
Sure, when you first start you’ll have plenty of mishits and some frustrations, but use these as motivation to continue to practice, because improvement occurs one day (and swing) at a time.
When you hit a great shot, it will make the game more fun — and that usually leads to investing more time into the game.
7. Master your setup and routine
I’m an absolute stickler when it comes to setup and routine — as my students can attest.
When it comes to seeing success in golf, it’s all about consistency. That means having the same grip, posture, setup, and routine for every club in your bag. This will lead to the contact and ball flight you desire with each swing.
8. Understand what makes a golf ball go into the air
A lot of new golfers try to lift or scoop the ball off the ground; but this is all wrong!
The bottom of the club needs to get down to the ground in order to get the ball into the air. By doing this, you’ll utilize the club’s loft, helping your ball flight.
Unfortunately, this isn’t always intuitive, and many female golfers don’t like to hit the ground due to a fear of mishitting it. But the sooner you learn to interact with the turf, the better your shots will become.
9. Put yourself in the most comfortable setting (McGinnis & Gentry, 2006)
McGinnis, a college marketing professor, and his colleagues have researched this area extensively over the years, with results showing that female golfers find it more comfortable to learn golf alongside other women.
This is opposite of how most beginning male players view things.
Women have different learning styles, physical attributes, and strength differences that need to be understood. So don’t be afraid to partner up with another girlfriend to get introduced to golf together.
10. Learn with like-minded individuals (McGinnis & Gentry, 2006)
Another way to learn the game is by doing so with like-minded individuals. This is a necessary ingredient when it comes to establishing motivation.
Women learning with other women can be a stepping stone towards establishing playing groups — a long-time constraint for female golfers learning the game.
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