Chart Your Shots Into the Green

In an earlier post, I talked about arriving. A shot to the pin must finish past the pin. It must arrive. It doesn’t matter how good your good shots are. It matters that they arrive.

Your long game sets up your green game (short game and putting) if you have the habit of arriving. But you’ll never really know if that is a problem if you don’t see a picture of how you really bring the ball to the hole.

This blog post is about making that picture.

You might keep statistics as you play. Fairways hit, greens hit, number of putts, are the basics and you can get as detailed from there as you want.

I ask you to not do that the next time you play. Instead make a picture. If you never keep stats, you get to make a picture, too.

You know the saying that a picture is worth a thousand words. It’s so true. Looking at a collective picture of where your shots into green end up will tell you in an instant what a row of numbers might only suggest.

What you do is draw a big circle in the center of a 3×5 card. As you play into each green, put a dot where the ball ends up, and draw a line from the ball to the approximate location of the pin. After nine holes, start in on a second card or draw a chart on the other side of the same card (eighteen holes on one chart makes too much clutter).

The picture below is my chart from the last round I played.

I was short of the pin four times, past it (way past!) once, and about even four times. Not bad. For the times I was short, it took ten strokes to get down. For the other five times, it took eleven strokes to get down.

Just nine holes doesn’t tell you that much. But if you get charts for four or five rounds, they should show a clear pattern of how you’re playing the ball into the green. I’ll leave it to you figure out what to do with that information.

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