Recently I listened to Gary McCord speak at an event. He was discussing some fundamental changes in the way the game is changing. We’ve all heard the old, and I mean old, adage, “Drive for show but putt for dough.” This roughly translates into good putting is worth more than crushing it off the tee.

However, recent studies have shown just the opposite. McCord cited a statistic that said for every 20-yards you add off the tee, you take 2 strokes of your score. THAT, IS, INSANE! He laid out the four elements of the golf game in order of importance:

1. Driving
2. Approach shots
3. Short game
4. Putting

This flies in the face of everything we knew about golf technique! This basically says get it on the green faster and it won’t matter as much if you’re a bad putter, which in essence, makes a lot of sense. We always thought that your short game and putting would save you from errant tee shots, but as it relates to the current state of the game, that’s completely backwards.

This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t practice putting or that having a solid short game won’t help your score, because it absolutely will, it just says that if you can add some yards off the tee and develop a swing that will let you hit it longer, you’ll be in better shape in the long run. Longer tee shots give you shorter approach shots, shorter approach shots lead to more makable putts.

On the range hit every club in the bag. Work on everything, don’t neglect anything!

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