Do you practice properly? I ask this because I witness plenty of golfers everyday wasting quite a bit of time and energy by practicing improperly. Many players feel that the longer they practice, the better they will be. Though this may be true in some instances, most of you can improve by simply focusing on three key elements of your game. Driving, chipping, and putting. Perhaps this is why the Drive, Chip, and Putt Championship was created for junior golfers. It’s important. I often tell my students that there are 2 key elements to scoring more consistently in golf. Keep your tee shots on the property. Learn to get the ball in the hole in 3 shots once you are within 25 yards of the green. This doesn’t seem too difficult, right? However, most of those high numbers you will occasionally score on a hole stem from your inability to accomplish each of these elements. What exactly does it mean to keep your tee shot on the property? Well, in most instances, it simply means to hit your tee shot in a location that you can find your ball and advance your second shot in a positive direction. It doesn’t require that you hit every fairway. In fact, many of you struggle in this game because you are overly concerned about hitting fairways. This causes you to be apprehensive with your golf swing by swinging out of fear of where the ball MAY end up. Don’t worry about hitting the fairway. Widen your landing area by focusing on keeping your golf ball between any hazards bordering the fairways. By doing this, your landing area will often double in width, and your ability to swing more freely and with more confidence will strengthen. As you get closer to the green, I want you to imagine your ability to throw your golf ball onto the putting surface. Once you are close enough to be able to throw your ball onto the green, you are now in the range where you need to get the ball into the hole in 3 shots, or fewer. I’m not asking you to chip the ball right next to the hole for an easy up and down. Rather, I’m simply asking that you focus on chipping your ball ANYWHERE on the putting surface, and eventually learning how to 2-putt. Again, it doesn’t seem like much, but you will be amazed at how often you take more than 3 shots in this situation. Playing consistent golf is about learning how to minimize your mistakes. Most mistakes that ultimately lead to a high score on a hole stem from either a drive struck out of play, or an inability to get the ball in the hole once you are near the green. If you learn to focus your practice on these elements, I can assure you that your scores will become much more consistent.