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Ever just have horrible range session?


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After a couple lessons, I have been striping the irons on the range and on the course over the last two months.  I played Friday and pured most all iron shots all day.  Then, yesterday I went up to the range to hit a bucket. EVERY SINGLE iron shot was off the toe and about 30 yards short. Every single ball mark was in the exact same spot on the toe, on every single iron I pulled from the bag.  I've been so discouraged all day.  I'm hoping the next range session will go better and I haven't developed some weird habit over the weekend.

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Are you doing drills or just hitting balls with full swings?    Exactly what was the purpose of the range session?     Don't know what the lessons where about but a couple of months is too short a tim

My worst golf has almost always been on the range. I have never had a real, on-course round where the ball striking was anywhere near as bad as my bad range days.   That said, I've learned t

The only people who don’t have bad range sessions are people that don’t play golf.  The WORST thing you can do is make a change when you were doing well.   Bad rounds and sessions happen.

Are you doing drills or just hitting balls with full swings?    Exactly what was the purpose of the range session?     Don't know what the lessons where about but a couple of months is too short a time to expect to make a consistent swing change especially if you abandon drills or just make full swings at speed.

 

And then there is this

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1 hour ago, glk said:

Are you doing drills or just hitting balls with full swings?    Exactly what was the purpose of the range session?     Don't know what the lessons where about but a couple of months is too short a time to expect to make a consistent swing change especially if you abandon drills or just make full swings at speed.

I was hitting balls with full swings.  There really wasn't a purpose other than working on alignment and honing in distance with each club.

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There will always be sessions that are the outlier some days.  Happens to all of us.  Don't be discouraged.  I have the same problem as you when I play bad or have a bad session.  My misses are almost always on the toe side.  Try to get someone to record your swing on your phone and see what you can do to fix it. 

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To you’re question the answer is PLENTY. 

 

I strongly recommend watching tour pro range session to copy how the keep a deliberate pace, and how they prepare for each shot. 

 

I understand your frustration. When things go very bad on a practice session you’ve got to slow down some and go through your pointers. And if you can’t go back to a quieter frame of mind it’s better leaving than hitting terrible shots like a robot while you’re gathering steam. 

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2 minutes ago, chippa13 said:

You wind up trying to fix something that isn't wrong if it just happens to be one of those off days.

The day before a high-stakes-for-me 36 hole day I hit up the range - who had just switched to mats for some reason - to make sure my driver swing is dialed and while warming up I could not hit an iron flush to save my life so of course did some tweaks to the swing and felt really good about it....on the range..on mats.

 

Next day hit every wedge/iron shot fat and was just guessing all day with the dumb new swing thoughts the range put in my head. Worse 2 rounds of golf I played all year. hands down

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51 minutes ago, jackdanger said:

The day before a high-stakes-for-me 36 hole day I hit up the range - who had just switched to mats for some reason - to make sure my driver swing is dialed and while warming up I could not hit an iron flush to save my life so of course did some tweaks to the swing and felt really good about it....on the range..on mats.

 

Next day hit every wedge/iron shot fat and was just guessing all day with the dumb new swing thoughts the range put in my head. Worse 2 rounds of golf I played all year. hands down

I hate mats.  Injury prone and hide fat shots.  I would be a tour pro today if I had not started my golfing life hitting off mats at a PAR 3 course.  Now I'm an 18 cap.

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27 minutes ago, sprcoop said:

I would be a tour pro today if I had not started my golfing life hitting off mats at a PAR 3 course

Oh I hear ya. I'd for sure be a tour pro today too if I had started when I was 6, could keep my drives on this planet, have any sort of short game and stop playing 4ft gimmes every time out.

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Just had a horrible range session. Have some important rounds the next two weekends. Unfortunately, hitting on mats as the course and range is being reseeded. Got a small bucket of 35 balls, and hosel rocketed about 20 of them into the net on the right. I did manage to hit 12 or so with a nice towering flight directly on the target. And that's all I am going to take away from that session. It's in there, we will get it out on the course. 

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I echo what others have said. It just takes patience. That’s what makes it fun! Arnold Palmer once said “golf is a journey, not a destination.”  This was the first year I was medically cleared to hit golf balls following an L5/S1 injury 3.5 years ago. My swing regressed to my college days in the late 90’s (slice!).  I played with everything. Then the hosel shots happened when I changed how close I stood to the ball. I was far, far removed from my 9 handicap days in 2016. More like a 29!  I lost 11 golf balls in 18 holes.  I played all of 2016 (8 rounds) with 4 golf balls, lol. But slowly and surely, the muscle memory began to return. I noticed my grip was weak, like my college days and my shoulders were pointing 15* left at address. Well, that’s a recipe for disaster! Once I squared up my shoulders, my stronger grip (V’s of my hand pointing to my right armpit) my most recent swing motions came back. No more hosel shots and I was compressing the ball again vs “slapping” at the ball.  But I still have a lot to work on.  

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My worst golf has almost always been on the range. I have never had a real, on-course round where the ball striking was anywhere near as bad as my bad range days.

 

That said, I've learned to minimize those bad range sessions and they're increasingly rare now:

 

First, if I get any inkling whatsoever that my swing is going off, I immediately switch to doing something different. Very different. E.g. instead of full swings, I hit a bunch of chips and pitches to targets (usually just balls lying downrange) anywhere from 10-40yds away. Don't ingrain bad habits or bad feelings by pounding ball after ball thinking you're fixing something.

 

Second, I am super deliberate about each and every ball. Every shot has some aspect where I'm committing 100% to do something - it could be a skill, a feel, a target, or particular state of mind. I never just rake and hit. This takes a bit of time. My typical range session is only 45 balls, but can easily take 45 minutes to complete. It's as much mental as physical. (Funny story: a co-worker told me he hits hundreds of balls each range session. Knowing I'm a considerably lower handicap player than he is, he was shocked to learn that I hit only a fraction of the volume he hits.)

 

Finally, variety is really helpful to me. Switching clubs often makes me hit more like I do on course. I also really enjoy hitting to those short, sub-100 yd targets that are common at most ranges. E.g. how many different clubs can I use to hit that target placed at 60 yds? Can I hit both a huge slice and slinging hook to the same target?  Have fun and have focus.

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That is the whole purpose of a range session is to iron out stuff so that on the course, the are less likely to happen or you know how to react when they do happen. Most often, players who do not have a range session make a mistake on the course and suddenly feel as if they need to make a correction on the course and usually that correction is an over correction and that in itself leads them worse off. Like others have said, there is no perfect range session. To me, unless you are going every day or twice a day, your swing will have a moment where it feels as if you just started playing the game. Golf is always a game of adjustments, victories and setbacks. Welcome to the journey that never ends. Just embrace it and be a little less harsh on yourself. You are ahead of a lot more people. 

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I get that we all don’t live at the practice facility like folks making their living which , to me, even heightens the importance of having a plan for practice sessions.

 

my general practice session is start with putting - short around the hole then lag putting between 30-50 feet (hole not necessary, then short game area for chips and pitches out to about 30 yard - I like to use 3 of my balls hit them to a target, pick up and go to a different spot - can vary a specific location - high one, low runner, stock.   I don’t vary clubs and us my 55*. 
  Then to the range - depends on what my goal is drill focused or play focused.  Drills I’ll use some props and do lots of slow swings as well as rehearsals.  Play I do routine and typically rotate thru 3 clubs and not allowed to hit same club twice in a row.   Limit all of this to number is balls, say, 30 before switching up to do something else whatever the area, putting, chip, etc. 

typically this rarely goes beyond 2 hours - even less if I only want to focus on one area and skip the other one or two.  
 

I probably spend more time at home with drills by grabbing 10/15 minutes here and there through out the day.   


richie hunt had some good stuff  in that managing expectations thread.

 

im a fan of Goldilocks drills and using atypical clubs especially short game - want to improve your short game then go out and chip etc with 8i or 6i.  You flop it or hit, splash it out of a bunker,  high and soft with an 8i or lower loft and you’re probably good to go in general.   

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Ever had a bad ranges session??  This is a joke right?  I've had sessions where I started off hitting the ball in the hosel only to end up hitting them on the toe with very few in between.  It's like I could have taken the middle of the clubface completely out and still hit the ball.  Not well mind you.

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I'm fortunate in that I'm retired and able to go to the golf course everyday. Have access to unlimited range time.

 

With that said, I believe there are two types of "range" sessions: 1.) Warm-up session right before playing (especially needed if you're an old person) and 2.) Golf practice session. Of course, there is 3.) Hitting buckets of balls. 

 

Just trying to get loose enough to play in the first instance. In the second, going to the range with specific goals in mind. Focus on new skills and trying to ingrain a specific motion. Balls may go all over the place, but it doesn't matter if the motion is the goal.  Going to the range to "play golf" probably not that beneficial and will lead to disappointments that OP has noted. May be too much of #3. 

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I've had plenty of bad range sessions. Those are usually ones when it's a last minute trip out, or I have to be somewhere soon, like running out to hit a bucket on my lunch break. The common thing for me is a lack of focus and I'm just bashing balls. Worst thing to do. 

 

I know the OP said they were mostly there to work on alignment, but I've found that there still needs to be a target & shot focus as well.

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I think bad range sessions are normal, especially if trying to work on mechanics. The range is for testing and experimenting! 

 

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Bad range sessions are very common. They are a blessing.

 

A bad range session is usually a consistent swing that shows up every now and then on the course. Bad range sessions allow you to gain better understanding of your swing, what works, what doesnt, what feels right, what doesnt. Turning a bad range session into a good one is key to knowing how to make on-course adjustments if you get a bit off during the round.

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We all have poor range sessions but mind don't last for long.  As soon as I detect that my swing is out or sorts I get off the range, find a quiet place and think about what I' not doing right.  I was taught that doing a limited number of things would produce good shots.  If I'm hitting the ball poorly it's because I not doing something I should be doing, or not doing it well enough.  A little thought and I know what to do and my next session on the range is better.

 

I think it is very destructive to continue to hit balls when you are hitting them poorly, hoping to stumble on a fix.   Leads to more inconsistency and higher scores.

 

Steve

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I judge a practice session via video - checking if I’m changing the picture, doing things differently, implementing change. If it looks like I’m making a slight change on video successfully and the ball flight is terrible, I don’t mind. If I hit it good but fell back to old patterns, thats a setback. Eventually I’ll hit it better with the new moves. 

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On 10/20/2020 at 1:48 PM, Jhc09 said:

After a couple lessons, I have been striping the irons on the range and on the course over the last two months.  I played Friday and pured most all iron shots all day.  Then, yesterday I went up to the range to hit a bucket. EVERY SINGLE iron shot was off the toe and about 30 yards short. Every single ball mark was in the exact same spot on the toe, on every single iron I pulled from the bag.  I've been so discouraged all day.  I'm hoping the next range session will go better and I haven't developed some weird habit over the weekend.

Dude. I begged out of a game today because yesterday's session was outlandishly bad. I knew what was coming today and didn't want to make a mess of the others guys' day.

I've got an open cut on my trail hand where one of my calluses are, and so I'm blaming that, but I totally identity with you.

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I usually get a session in the day before a round and when I do have a bad one, I tend to focus on mechanics and technique during my round. As expected, my game is worse, I score higher, and have less fun.

 

Coincidentally my playing partners (randoms) are all more annoying.

 

Lately, I make my session shorter when my technique is failing and focus more on strategy and being more conservative on the course. It's been working out really well.

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