Pre shot routine repetition is the key to better golf

Golf is a game in which we need to be able to learn to switch from enjoying our surroundings and our playing partners into a highly focused state which connects us with the shot required. Learning how to practice this key part of the mental game, including the pre shot routine, will help us become better players.


Unless we are able to give every shot our best effort and attention, we will not get closer to playing to our potential. The thing to recognize here, is that this “relaxed concentration” is something we can learn and and improve every time we play. Eventually, it will become part of our subconscious and we won’t even realize we are doing it.

The pre shot routine will help you do this. This is one of the integral parts of playing better golf and it’s key to reaching your potential.

The Golf ‘Checks’

If you think about how you learned to drive, there were several “checks” that you went through, every time, before you put your foot on the accelerator. After driving for a while, those “checks” became automated and now you don’t have to consciously think about doing them. This is the same way that learning the pre shot routine will help your golf.

The more we can practice it, the more we can automate it, and the closer we will get to being optimally prepared to execute every shot as best we can.

The steps of a sound pre shot routine are:

1) Analyze
2) Visualize
3) Feel
4) Commit
5) Execute

Remember, repetition of the pre shot routine is the key to making it an automated subconscious process, and you a better golfer. Try to do it as often as you can on the course. This will not only help to improve the way you approach a golf shot, but knowing that you have performed these necessary steps will improve your confidence over the ball. Then all you have to do is concentrate on making a solid strike on the back of the ball.


*Photo by Hone Morihana

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David MacKenzie

is a mental golf coach and lives in Washington DC. He is the founder of Golf State of Mind, a teaching program designed to help golfers condition their minds to overcome fear and play with confidence.

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