There are plenty of reasons to get into golf. It’s a great way to kill a day with some buddies, the potential for fame and fortune, and just for the love of the game. Regardless of the reason, each new golfer needs to learn and work on the same things.

The Basics

Golf isn’t a sport like basketball or soccer where all you really need is a ball to play it. There’s obviously equipment and just getting to each hole can be an ordeal. A beginner, or just anyone unfamiliar with the sport, might be unaware of all its intricacies. To them, the game might just boil down to hitting the ball as close to the hole as possible.

However, it’s much more than that.

Start Short

When many people first get into golf, their first instinct is to grab a driver and head instantly to the driving range. While driving is definitely fun, there’s more to it than just hitting the ball as hard as you can. If you’re not familiar with the proper technique, or even grasp how to swing a club, driving can turn from fun to frustrating in an instant.

Instead, you should start with the shorter game.

Inside Out

A decent way to practice is to start inside and move out. A good amount of your game will be played pretty close to the green, so it pays to learn your way around the area. Chipping, pitching, and putting are all great ways to get familiar with the techniques, as well as the equipment.

Putting is probably the second most popular shot behind driving, and if you’re going to be playing seriously, then you’d better be good at it. 

Practice Wherever You Can, Whenever You Can

The nice thing about putting is that you don’t have to be at a course to practice it. You practice at home in your backyard, or even in your house. While your house won’t have the same effect on the ball as the green, it’s still a useful way to practice. 

Get on the Green

Before you can actually start putting, you need to get on the green.  Doing that mostly involves chipping and pitching. Now there is a difference between the two, so learn the proper techniques for both. 

Chipping stays lower the ground and involves more rolling. Pitching is more of a pop-up shot that doesn’t roll quite as much.

The chipping swing is a scaled down version of your entire swing, so it’s a good thing to practice before you start smashing balls all over the course.

Swing Away

Once you get the fundamentals down, then head to the driving range and smack those balls to your heart’s desire. Work on how you’re hitting the ball, just as much as how hard you hit it. You want to be able to hit the ball as straight as possible.

Just remember, the key to any sport is the fundamentals, and golf is no exception. If you find yourself struggling, don’t be afraid to take a step back and relearn the basics.