Make the Short Game Your Best Game!

Get to know all about the most useful clubs in your bag - the four golf wedges. Learn which wedge is best for certain types of shots. Understand why some shots should not be attempted with some wedges. will focus on helping golfers get the most out of the four wedges that a golfer can have in their bag.

How to "Build" a great short game by: Stan Pennington

What is the secret to a great short game in golf? Competition

At most any golf course during the summer months if you hang around the putting green and chipping areas you will stumble on a group of juniors playing games and competing against each other. Watching juniors roll 15 and 20 foot putts without fear will make more seasoned golfers remember their youth. How can you develop the feel and touch of a tour player? The answer is simple, start competing with anyone you can find to play with you.

Driving ranges have changed the way the game is played and the way the business of golf is run. Sure you need to have the long game to compete at any level. Jack Nicklaus has always said the most important club in his bag is the driver. If you are not in play, there is not much hope for your score, game or wallet. Once you are in play and down the fairway what should you develop next?

Sam Snead Over 80% of golf is played within 120 yards of the hole. Your putter and wedges are a close second to the driver as far as the clubs in your bag are concerned. If you can get the driver in play and get up and down from anywhere around the green, then you are in a elite group of scratch golfers.

Sam Snead always said he wished he would have practiced his wedges more and not worried about hitting 5 irons on the range.

In today's world, how can you spend hours practicing your short game? Where can you find others to compete against? The answer is closer than you realize. Your backyard and your neighborhood is where you should start.

Artificial Turf has come a long way over the past decade and continues to get better every year. Experience installers are in most areas of the country and can install backyard putting greens that play very similar to natural grass without much maintenance. Your children, neighbors, and friends will love spending quality time in the privacy of your home playing, practicing, and competing for hours on end.

Two great benefits are overlooked about backyard putting greens. One is that colleges are offering scholarships to girls if they can break 100. If you teach your daughter how to hit a driver and she learns how to chip and putt in the backyard, college could be paid for. The other occurs for adults who are just taking up the game of golf. Learning how to chip and putt in a private setting eliminates any embarrassment and reluctance for adults.

One last tip for building a great short game, try to hole out every single chip or putt. Here is the logic behind that statement. If you have one dart and all you have to do is hit the dart board for $1 Million, what are you going to think about? If it was me, my mind and eyes are going to be on the bull's eye. If I miss by a little, I will still hit the board. Another way to think about it is to aim small and miss small.

Best of luck with your golf pursuits and get a backyard putting green installed. Your family, friends, neighbors, and short game will thank you.

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Author: Stan Pennington, Principal IntelliTurf, Inc. 404-392-2783

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