G'day sports fans! Paul Williamson here—PGA Member and RGX Coach! So, I'm here to tell you about the 7th rule of Shooting Lower Scores.
Rule number seven is to STOP SHORT SIDING YOURSELF.
What is Short Siding?
It's when you're hitting an approach shot to a green, and you hit the ball on the side with the smallest amount of green between the edge of the green and the flag. It might be the pins cut on the right, and then you miss the green on the right-hand side, or the pins short and at the front, and you miss the green short. That is short siding yourself.
How about Long Siding?
Long siding is the other way. It is where you have most of the green to play with. So, if the pins are on the right, you hit it to the left.
So, now that we know the difference between the two let's dig in a little deeper on why you shouldn't short side yourself.
Short siding causes problems. You must get good at short game shots to get the ball close to the hole. You'll struggle to get down in three or up and down from the short side. If you get it wrong, doubles and triples come regularly.
If you've short-sighted yourself in a bunker, and you try to get it to finish too close many times, the ball ends up back at your feet again because you tried to get too cute. Or you were in the rough, and the club went underneath the ball, causing it to still be at your feet. Or maybe you bladed one over the other side of the green, and you're in another bunker. Do you now see how your big scores turn up?
How do you avoid that?
Back at the decision-making part of your approach shot is where you can start to rectify this problem. Instead of aiming at the flag, aim at the middle or long side of the green, where you've got the most green to work with.
Missing the green on the long side gives you a bigger margin for error. If you don't quite get the contact right on your chip shot, the ball will likely keep running towards the flag and get closer. It will be the same with the bunker and any short-game shot. When you've got more green to play with, it's a much easier shot. Out of a hundred or a thousand shots you will end up closer to the hole more often. You will become more like the Casino rather than the punter. The Casino always wins in the long run.
So, what you've got to do back in the fairway before you hit your approach shot: decide where the long part of the green is and where you can't miss it, the short side. Start incorporating this into your decision-making on the golf course, and your scores will come down.
Feel free to get in touch, as I'd be fascinated to hear if you start to do this and if your scores come down. Also, I want to know if your short-game shots end up better and you have fewer putts because of it.
Thanks for now!
We'll see you next time with rule number eight. Cheers!