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Martin's Blog: A four-point plan for the offseason

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CHAPTER 34: Year End Special
As we close things out for 2012, here is a four-point plan to help you keep improving during the offseason:

1. Play more than you practice:

• Try playing a round without using a driver.

• Take one more club than your initial thought on your approach shots.

• Play to the center of every green.

• Use the 70 percent rule, meaning dont attempt a shot unless you think you can pull it off at least 70 percent of the time.

• Play a round of Worst Ball. This is when you take two balls off the tee and play the one with the worst result. Do the same for every other shot until the ball is holed.

2. Work on pitching more than putting:

• Make sure the ball position is consistently in the center of your stance with the left toe pointed out.

• Get a true wrist cock in your swing, which is up-and-down not side-to-side.

• Dont let the hips lead in the downswing. Having a kinematic sequence is magic for the long game, tragic for the short game.

• Practice three different lengths of your swing with three different wedges so you have a shot for nine different yardages.

3. Work on putting more than long game:

• Work on your technique at home and touch on the practice green.

• Improve your technique by using feedback tools such as a mirror on the ground aimed at the target or hitting the end of a small circular tube trying to get it to go as straight as possible.

• Improve your touch and distance control by putting a ball as close as possible to the fringe and putting while looking at the hole the entire time.

4. Practice the Big Three of the long game:

• Club Shaft: Practice swinging just a shaft at home on the correct plane and when you replace it with a real club, visualize the club swinging through a gate in the impact zone.

• Clubface: Take a block of wood and drill a shaft into it at a 5-iron lie. Practice hitting the flat side of the block into the flat side of an exercise log or another movable flat surface. This will help you get the correct hand action.

• Clubhead: Take a shaft or driveway marker and stick it through the grip end of a club. Take practice swings or short shots, never full swings, with the extended shaft lightly resting against your body after impact.


Popular golf instruction tips:  Long Game Full SwingPutting Pitching


More video from Martin:

In this video, Martin has a great drill to help you keep from using your legs too much during your swing, which will keep your feet nice and quiet in your swing. Watch Video

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