• Mike Hammond, CSCS, TPI

Safely Under 100

Golf Quest Update 1: Safely Under 100

It’s been six weeks since I started tracking my handicap on the golf course. I’m proud to say I’ve broken 100 for the first time and my life and now feel like I’m a safe bet to stay under 100 every time out. Along the way I’ve carded my first two lifetime birdies and found more aspects of my game to work on.

After 216 holes of golf played in the last two months, I’ve dropped my handicap from a 34.5 to a 25.8 and am well on my way to my goal of playing bogey-golf. I’ve decided to combine two of my goals into one turning one chip and two putts into a combined three shots around the green per hole. This will set me up to go drive-approach-chip or putt-putt-putt and should card me plenty of 5s. I’ve also modified my goal of dropping my golf fitness handicap from close to zero to maintaining a zero.

Where am I at now? I’m sitting at 3.37 shots around the green as my putter has cooled down a bit, but my approaches have been finding the green at a greater pace. As for my golf fitness handicap, it now sits at 2. The only test I failed after rescreening was the Overhead Squat. That’s 11 shots down from a 13 six weeks ago.

Do those 11 shots sound familiar? They should. That’s how many shots have come off my handicap on the course as well. On March 27 (time of last screen) my handicap was 36.5. That’s 10.7 shots lower than my current 25.8, showing the importance of your body’s movement to your golf game and what improving it can do.

While not 100% of the credit can be chalked up to improving my golf fitness handicap, it sure does help significantly. Other things I’ve done in the past month-and-a-half include going to physical therapy to help unlock my hip and better target how to attack it for improvement inside the weight room.

Another aspect that can take credit is playing more golf than I ever have before. I’ve spent 39 days either on the course or at the range practicing, so consistency is also a factor. But again, consistency is a lot easier achieved while having the ability to move your body the way you need to for golf.

I’ve also taken a lesson on chip shots and have a couple more on the schedule. My next area of focus on the course is the 50-to-100-yard shot. I feel great with my pitching wedge that sits 110-to-120, but have no consistency with full swing wedges.

Big changes in my game I’ve noticed is not getting mad at the bad shots. Just accepting that I’ll have a few terrible, “how the f--- did that happen,” shots help me stay calm and loose for the next shot. Overall, I feel safely under 100 for every round and that feels great having never broken 100 until three weeks ago. It doesn’t have to be a daunting task to improve at golf. It just takes slow consistent work every day. Get 1% better every day and it will begin to add up.

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