How to Make a Smooth Start in Golf

In many ways, the first few holes of the golf course can be the most challenging. You might have a few nerves when you head to the first tee, and your swing probably isn’t is the same rhythm that it will be in later on in the round. Getting off to a good start is great because it can set you up to have a great round, but it is certainly easier said than done. To play the first few holes well consistently you need to have a good routine before your round begins so that you can walk to the first tee with confidence.

The tips below have been provided to help you get off to better starts in your upcoming rounds of golf.

  • Get there early. Nothing is better for the pre-round jitters than having plenty of time to get settled in at the course, warm up a bit, and get ready for your round. If you find yourself pulling into the parking lot just a few minutes before your tee time and rushing into the pro shop to pay for the round, you probably won’t get off to a very good start. Make time to arrive early, and your performance on the first few holes should improve.
  • Play conservative. Don’t make the game any harder than it has to be by trying some highly difficult shots right off the bat. Pick out conservative targets for the first few holes and try to get settled in to the round. Once you feel like you have a good tempo going and have gotten rid of any nerves that you might have had, you can start to be more aggressive and attempt more difficult shots.
  • Learn the speed of the greens. Even on the same golf course, green speeds can change dramatically from day to day. By taking some time on the practice green to get comfortable with the speed, you will do yourself a great favor on the first few holes. Instead of having to adjust on the fly, you will already have a good idea for the green speed and can hopefully putt well right from the very first hole. Specifically, make sure to hit some long putts across the practice green so that you can get a good idea of how they are rolling that day – only hitting short putts won’t give you the same information.