Golfing Magazine Online -
From the Range to the Course
Golfing Magazine Staff
By Golfing Magazine Staff
Published on 08/3/2010

From the Range to the Course
“I took multiple lessons.  My game got progressively worse.  I’m fairly good on the range, but lousy on the course.”
Sound familiar?   If you fall into this category, like so many golfers, here are some tips for you.
Understand the Learning Process.   Begin by defining specific short and long-term goals.  Be realistic based on your level of commitment and physical condition - players progress at different rates.  Learn the fundamentals of the swing, and then get comfortable playing the game.
Practice Effectively:  Take practice swings with a purpose; stick to your goals.  In the learning mode, thought precedes motion.  Repetition creates habit.  Once your swing fundamentals and mechanics are sound, then work on acquiring accuracy and feel.  This is accomplished through deliberate practice and on-course simulation.  For example, practice distance control with your wedges - 20, 30, 40 yard pitch shots -- from different lies.   Always aim at a specific target and switch up your targets frequently.   It is also important to practice your pre-shot routine so that it will be automatic and feel natural on the course.
Getting Comfortable on the Course:  Make sure your equipment is properly fit for you.  Have a general understanding of the rules & etiquette, golf language, scoring, and be aware of pace of play.  
How to Transition from the Range to the Course:  Having rehearsed and repeated various shots through effective practice, you will play smarter on the course.   And don’t forget your pre-shot routine.  Under pressure, players tend to become inconsistent, slow or fast, and lose focus.  Your pre-shot routine will help you maintain rhythm, confidence, consistency and control.  Plan out the shot type and shape and shift your focus to the target.  
Following these steps will help you take your game from the range to the course and enjoy your round.