The How of Taking Golf Lessons

Taking Golf Lessons is really not all the difficult.

You find a pro you are comfortable with and sign up for lessons then start.  The real secret to taking the lessons is in how you effectively practice and apply what you have been taught.

One of the most common mistakes that professionals see in students is; They come in for either a lesson, or a series of lessons, then after the first lesson immediately run to the golf course expecting a miracle to happen.  It takes solid dedicated practice to get better.  Name me any top level athlete that did it right the first time, even Olympic athletes train day in an day out.  So the question really is how good do you want to get?  I need not reiterate the stories of Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Vijay Singh, Shaquille O’Neal, or any other Professional Athlete.  And YES…I know that you have it in you to be the best you can be.

While we as Professionals are good at what we do, and yes we can help you get immediate results during the lesson.  We can and will also assist you at the range, and we can help you in replicating the results you seek, but. There has to be a little bit of reality and responsibility upon your part as well.  And that comes with patience, diligence, and practice.

So let’s get into a little bit about the how of taking a golf lesson. Here is a list of bullet points for you to take into consideration and use to your advantage.

  • Use this as a simple guideline for your lessons.
  • Show up early and hit some balls to get warmed up.  Normally I recommend my students hit about 50 balls to get warmed up. simple little wedge shots will do, it is only to get you warmed up some so you can make a good swing.
  • Make sure that you schedule your lesson(s) at least three – four days before you play.  This gives you time to practice some in between the lesson and playing.
  • Though you may initially feel a change, to make a real difference takes repetitive motion that is as close as possible to being duplicate.  It takes about 300 range balls to really even begin start to solidify any changes and over 1000 range balls to make it a partial habit.
  • Put yourself in the right frame of mind by going to the range to focus upon only one or two different new results in your practice sessions.
  • Will yourself to work with your Pro, let them know your intent to work on only one or at two maximum new things during each lesson.  And even then only try and accomplish one at a time.  It is very easy to go into overload during a lesson or practice and get frustrated.  He/She is your coach and there FOR YOU
  • Take the mindset of Top amateurs and Professionals and learn to love to practice.  We already know that swinging the club and hitting balls can be a lot of fun.  So hit a lot of balls and find out more about you and your swing.
  • Look at the golf swing as a puzzle and your are the Puzzle Master building your own personal swing.  You will learn a lot and not just about golf.
  • In times when you are short on cash or maybe can’t afford to go play, use that as the opportunity to practice and make your swing more efficient and solid.  At least you are moving in the right direction with your swing.
  • Be prepared to possibly initially take a couple two or three weeks off from playing.  While we as professionals want you to be playing, when you come to us for lessons, you are paying us to do a job and fix what ails in your golf swing.  In short you hire us as your own personal consultant.  Part of that consulting job we take on as you have asked us to is, to also make sure that you are making consistent progress.  And in that respect we as Professionals are serious in helping you.
  • Remember whatever changes being made are new, be cautious when going to the golf course and playing at full bore so to speak.  Putting a new golf swing under pressure has it’s own set of mental anguishes.
  • Bring a small note pad so you can keep in your bag at all times and use it only for your lessons.  And use it when you are playing too, make notes to ask your pro about a shot situation or maybe just something you notice that makes you feel either comfortable or uncomfortable.  Every pro during every lesson gets an epiphany of some sort, write it down.  Also use it to write down any of your own epiphany’s while on the course then talk and verify them with your pro.
  • Remember that golf is a precise set of motions that will produce exacting results, so get into it and give it your all.

PGA and LPGA Professionals want you to get better and see you succeed, we really do care about your game.  And no it is not always about giving and getting paid for golf lessons.  I cannot tell you how many times myself, or any of my counterparts and peers within the industry have given free golf lessons.  It is very common for it to happen and we do that because we want you to succeed and be happy on the golf course.

True Teaching Professionals teach for one and normally only one reason.  PASSION.  So find a passionate teacher and certainly find one who does not watch the clock.  Great teachers know and understand that not every one learns at the same pace.  personally I have been known to push my next lesson back a few minutes in order for the one there at the time to make something solid.

To me it is much more important to make sure you have a breakthrough, then to leave you hanging for the sake of the next person in line.  And when that does happen, then guess what I reward the next person with extra time of their own as a thank you.  Even if it means I do it for free.  My passion comes from seeing you or them smile.  I give you my all and strive to bring out the best in you at the same time.  And No I am not being rude in doing that, I am doing what you pay me to do,  make you and your golf game better.

Much like Jaime Escalante was for the math program in East Los Angeles in the 80’s-90’s, I am that way for golf.  And I do all I can to Stand and Deliver.

Until Next time

Hit em long, straight and as few times as possible, Happy golfing and have a great day.

I’ll see you on the lesson tee

Robb Nunn, PGA Professional

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