As I sat watching the final round of this past week’s Northern Trust Open I felt encouraged about my golf game. It may be that I am months detached from my last round and therefore have fuzzy memories of my abilities, but with or without clear memories I saw top-level tour professionals struggling and scrambling throughout the day.
However, there are key differences between their game and mine—consistency and short game. I may hit a good shot now and then, but they practice countless hours to ensure that each club’s yardage can be predicted within a yard no matter what the weather, the grass, or the situation. They have the ability to pull a shot here and there, because they aren’t nearly as likely to continue their miss-hits through the rest of the hole. And no matter what they do before they get close to the green they are aiming for the bottom of the cup every time they get within 50 yards whether they’re on the green, in a bunker, or in kikuyu grass.
Don’t get me wrong I’m aiming at the same spot in those situations, but the odds of me landing it within five feet of the hole are much slimmer than the odds of a tour pro draining it. So, it’s time to make friends with my short game arsenal. It’s time to determine if the putter I’ve had for so long is still the right putter for me, and it’s time to get the clubs back into my hands. The season is just weeks away; it’s time to get ready.