Play SMART Golf

We all know that over-thinking in golf is a dangerous thing.  Which is why Vision 54’s concept of a “Think Box” and “Play Box” is a great way to keep swing thoughts in their proper place.

Pia Nilsson and Lynn Marriott, founders of Vision54 teach that before hitting any golf shot, stand back from the ball (in your think box), analyze the hole quickly and decide what you’re going to do  — what club to use, where to aim, where to place the ball in your stance, etc.  

Then the moment you walk up to the ball (and go into your play box), set up for your shot based on what you committed to do in your think box; stop thinking and just swing freely.

It’s brilliant in its simplicity, but then again, aren’t most SMART ideas simply brilliant?

Golf is hard – no doubt about it.  But it doesn’t have to be complicated.  Simplify and improve your game by playing SMART golf:

Strategize every hole from green to tee

Ernie Els

Ernie In his Think Box

With every hole on the golf course you need to think strategically and have a plan of attack, not just for the next shot, but every shot you plan on hitting on that hole.

Start mapping out your plan from the green and work backwards.  Your GPS App will show you the layout of the hole and where the trouble is so you can decide where you want your ball to be for your next shot.

This is where golf starts to look at lot like business.  A good business plan always starts with where you want to be, not where you are.  You work backwards from there asking yourself, “What needs to happen to get me to this spot?”  Keep doing that until you’re back at the tee.  You’ll probably find you won’t hit as many Drivers as you used to.

If you run into trouble, you’ll need to adjust the plan, but it’s still from green to the ball, not from the ball to the green.

Measure distances for every golf club

Striker Golf GPS MapDo you know how far you hit every club in your bag? If you don’t then you can’t possible have a plan of attack for any hole.

Hitting balls on the range won’t tell you how far you hit the ball because, let’s face it, unless you belong to a very exclusive club, most range balls suck.

So you need to figure out your distance with every club while playing over time in different conditions.

Using Striker’s Touch-point technology you can measure the distance from where you are to your target and watch it automatically tell you the distance from your target to the green.

Compare where your ball lands with the target to see how accurate your assessment of your distance with that club really is. After a few games, you’ll have your distances nailed down for every club.

Aim at a very small target

So you’re standing in the fairway about to hit your approach shot.  What’s your target?  For most golfers, it’s the green – anywhere on the green is good as far as they are concerned.  But that’s not going to give you the best result.

Aim to the smallest target you can see – a tree branch, house chimney or maybe the flag if you’re confident.  If you aim big, you’ll miss big.  Aim small to keep your mind and body focused and your misses minimal.

Release the club head freely

Tension and doubt kill distance and accuracy.  So when you walk from your think box into your play box, trust your plan, waggle out the tension, take one final look at the target, take your back swing and then release the club head free from tension and doubt — almost as if you are trying to throw it down the target line, as talked about in Extraordinary Golf.

Track your stats and practice your weaknesses

stats and scoreDo you have a handicap?  If you’ve been playing longer than 2 years, you really should.  Remember,  you can’t improve what you don’t measure, so get a handicap and record your games at least monthly.

But that’s not enough.  To really improve at golf you need to track your stats (fairways hit, greens in regulation, number of putts, up-and-downs, # of shots inside 50 yards/100 yards, etc).

Plan your practice sessions based on what your stats tell you is your biggest weakness.  You’ll find that handicap of yours dropping steadily as you Track & Attack your problem areas.

SMART golf isn’t rocket science; it’s common sense.

So before you play your next round of golf, download Striker Golf GPS to your iPhone or Android phone.  Use it to help you practice SMART golf and then let us know how you’re doing.  We love hearing from you!

Your golf buddies at Striker


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Before I started using Striker, I used to set up my score card like this at the start of my round.

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It’s a wonder we can still hit the ball at all!

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