Let’s face it, the time spent working with an instructor or your coach is usually much more productive than time spent alone on the range. One reason this occurs is due to the level of focus and effort that goes into each shot when you’re in front of your instructor. Your instructor doesn’t let you cut corners, but when you are alone it is easy to get a little lazy at times when you aren’t under their watchful eye. This article shares a fun and effective way to overcome this practice pitfall and increase the quality of your practice by using a virtual caddie.

The next time you are at the driving range, imagine that your coach, or a famous caddie, is with you observing your practice time. Make the commitment to this virtual caddie to discuss your swing, shot type, and what you are planning before taking the shot. Before each shot you take, mentally engage in an imagined dialogue with your virtual caddie discussing things like:

  • What distance is my target?
  • What is the best club selection?
  • What type of shot do I want hit? (Describe to your virtual caddie the shape of the shot, what action it is going to have, and walk them through the visualization of the shot.)
  • What is my target and where do I want the ball to land?
  • Answer any other questions that you feel are important before taking your shot.

Once you discuss the shot with your virtual caddie, do your pre-shot routine, and take your shot. After you take the shot, commit to watching the entire flight of the ball, and the results of the shot. Then step back, briefly discuss the outcome with your virtual caddie, and repeat the process.

A virtual caddie can increase the quality of your practice time by slowing you down at the range and making you think through each shot like you do on the course. This exercise requires discipline, but will result in an increased ability to focus when performing on the course and greater mental toughness. It also helps you develop a consistent pre-shot routine which must be practiced in order to be mastered.

Give this practice strategy a shot next time you are at the practice range. It is a fun way to practice and produces great results. Put it to the test and enhance the effectiveness of your practice time.

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