Best winter practice drills to do at home

These drills will stop your game getting stale through winter

Andy Roberts's picture
By Andy Roberts on Thu, 13 Oct 2016 - 11:10

best practice golf drills at home

 

It can be tough motivating yourself to head to the range and work on your swing in the cold months of winter.

And if you don't live close enough to an Urban Golf, there are plenty of simple indoor golf drills that you can perform in the comfort of your living room or during that office break to keep your game sharp.

While it's tricky to practice driving the ball unless you have the luxury of a 300-yard long garden, you can at least focus on fine-tuning your swing, mastering your short game and installing confidence with the blade.

Here are ten of our favourite practice drills...

1. Driving net: The perfect way to practice the swing in the freedom of your own garden. Always seek permission from the bill payer first and ensure the net is placed within a few yards of where you are striking the ball. You don't want to be asking Mrs Smith down the street down for your Pro V1 back.

Depending on what sort of turf you have in the garden, it's best to put some carpet down to ensure you leave some grass in place. Most good nets will cost around ¬£40. Although you can't see where the ball goes - like you do on the range and on the course - you can certainly gauge feel and sound of impact.

2. Chipping net: While chipping is all about gauging distance, feel and knowing where to land the ball on the green, the chipping net drill is perfect target practice and can become rather addictive. Why not get the whole family involved?

3. Lounge putting: Improving your putting makes it much easier to reach your scoring objectives in golf. Either buy yourself a imitation putting surface - usually with a raised hole and several bunkers for effect - and lay it onto a hard surface like the kitchen, or just putt away on the carpet aiming towards a chair leg or cup.

While the carpet runs pretty slow on the stimp, putting in the living room can be particularly useful to gain feel and confidence, especially if you're trying out a new putter. Another good putting drill for alignment is to putt along the skirting boards or the line of a rug to ensure you're taking the club straight back and through.

4. Impact: Use a giant workout ball to get a feel for what impact should feel like. Place the ball at hip height and take your set up. Try and feel like you're driving your hips into the ball and are compressing the ball into the wall. Don't let the upper body lean into the ball, just try and compress it into the wall with the lateral driving motion of your hips.

5. Chipping balls in the landing: Unlike the chipping net, this is a much better drill to gauge distance. My own drill involves chipping from the hallway onto the small rug in my bedroom.

6. Spine angle: This one is slightly more hi-tech but all you need is a chair, wet flannel/sponge and a golf club. Many of us fail to maintain our spine angle in the swing and this drill aims to counter that. If you rotate your shoulders properly - with a club placed across your chest - you will see the shaft stays on the same angle going back and through.

The angle of the shoulders working around a fixed spine is evidenced by the fact you can see the shaft. If you take a proper backswing and set up next to the chair, with the flannel/sponge underneath the left foot, and then turn back with the body and sway, you will end up pushing the chair slightly which is not ideal.

But if you rotate properly, pushing out some of the water with the left foot, you will notice the right hip moves away from the chair just slightly. In this position, the spine angle will be in the proper position, the left shoulder will be low and the head will stay still.

7. Legwork: All you need for this drill is a size 5 or size 3 football, depending on your build and size. Keep your legs in the proper set-up position and keep weight on the inside. If you don't get the legs working together and end up swaying - when weight gets outside the right leg - the ball will drop.

So if you can keep the ball inside your knees, you will encourage good dynamics and stability by holding the right leg steady into the downswing. The ball will, of course, drop out when you begin the downswing.

8. Keepy-up with wedge:While this won't ultimately help lower your scores, it does promote good hand-eye co-ordination which are important to a good golf swing.

 

9. Copy pro swings on television: Watching golf on a Sunday night can be extremely frustrating given the amount of commercial breaks taken by broadcasters CBS and NBC.

But to counter that, Sky Sports have provided a great addition to coverage by acquiring Denis Pugh to take a closer look at the swings of those in action.

Why not get up off the sofa and join in with Pugh to emulate what the leading lights are doing?

10. Read instruction books:Of course, it doesn't all have to be physical. After a long, tiring day at the office, why not kick back and relax with a golfing manual? There are plenty of very good coaching books out there, just find the one that suits your game and understanding the most. I am currently reading Dave Pelz's Short Game and Putting Bibles (left) after meeting the great man at The Grove.

Which golf drills do you practice at home and why? Share your thoughts in the forum below, on Twitter @Golfmagic and on our Facebook page.