All golfers want to shoot lower scores, but not all of them are willing to invest the time to improve.
Golf can be frustrating and it can leave you wondering - how do you get better at golf?
You know you need to work on your golf swing, but how do you ensure your practice sessions will produce results? We can help!
Use the 11 driving range tips below and you will start to see better shots before you get to the bottom of your bucket of balls.
They will work for beginners and advanced players (scratch golfers).
Learn how to practice and your next range session will be the first step toward unlocking your full golf potential.
We can’t promise you will turn into Tiger Woods overnight, but your golf game will improve!
11 Driving Range Tips For Beginners And Golfers Of All Levels
1. Set A Clear Goal For Every Practice Session
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry said it best, “A goal without a plan is just a wish”. Before you buy your range balls you should know what you hope to get out of your practice session.
Just smacking balls for an hour is not driving range practice.
During your last round of golf, what hurt your score? Was it your driver or your mid-irons? Were you missing fairways or chunking your pitching wedge once you got close to the green?
The answers to these questions can establish your practice routine for today.
2. Do A Proper Warm-Up Routine
The golf driving range isn’t free - you pay for each ball in your bucket. Why waste them hitting golf shots while your back is tight and your legs are tense?
Prior to taking a swing always stretch and perform golf exercises to get your body ready to practice. You don’t want to learn bad habits because you aren’t prepared to make a full swing.
Once you have stretched, start with a sand wedge and take half swings. Not only will this get you loose, but it will also get you in the habit of hitting the golf ball solidly.
The great thing about the driving range is that bad shots don’t matter, but you don’t want to hit them because your body isn’t ready to swing.
3. Master Your Grip
The beginner golfer often makes a mistake in their setup that prevents them from hitting great golf shots.
How you hold the golf club (your grip) is critical if you want to play better golf. The good news is that you have options - you can use an interlock, an overlap, or a 10-finger grip.
Go with what feels comfortable to you.
Adjusting your grip is one of the hardest changes you can make to your golf game, so the driving range is the perfect place to work on it.
Unlike the golf course, who cares if you hit a duff or shank on the range?
4. Work On Your Stance
You have figured out your grip, so next we need to make sure you take a proper golf stance. Your posture and stance can significantly impact your tee shots.
Your feet should be slightly wider than shoulder-width to create a solid base for your swing. Your knees should be flexed, but not bent. Bend at the waist and keep your spine straight.
The goal is to make a balanced and powerful swing.
5. Use Alignment Sticks
One of the best training aids is also the simplest. You should never head to the driving range without alignment sticks in your bag.
How are you going to hit your target line if you are aiming in the wrong direction?
The key is to get your shoulders and feet lined up 10 yards left of your target. Lie your alignment stick on the ground in this position and use it prior to your iron shots. Who doesn’t love more golf shots flying at the flag?
6. Take Every Shot Seriously
Some golf tips are easy to understand, but hard to do - we would put this one in that category. PGA tour professionals do this very well, but most beginners lack the focus to do it.
Treat each ball that you pull from your bucket like a prized possession. Don’t waste it!
Go through your preshot routine, visualize the shot you are trying to hit, and make a committed golf swing. You never want to “rapid fire” range balls.
Take practice swings between shots and always pick a target. The goal should be to replicate how you would approach a shot on the golf course.
7. Tweak Your Swing
This may sound obvious, but the driving range is where you want to try out different swings. You might be able to find your perfect swing in that bucket of balls.
Play around with your ball position. Try to hit different ball flights. Can you manipulate the club face to hit a draw or fade on purpose?
The range is where you develop your swing and learn how to hit different shots.
For example, many golfers hit a slight fade with their driver, but like to use their fairway wood when they need a draw. Does this work for you?
8. Work On Your Weaknesses
Is your driver your favorite club? Do you love crushing it down the fairway?
If this is true, don’t go to the driving range to smash drivers. Instead, work on the club in your bag that scares you. The one you don’t trust under pressure.
The driving range is where you should turn your weaknesses into strengths. It is where you need to build confidence in the parts of your game that don’t work well.
9. Focus On One Thing At A Time
Don’t get “wrapped around the axel”.
Don’t fall into analysis paralysis. We understand how it happens. Everyone you play with has a different idea of how to fix your swing.
Keep your head still, slow down your backswing, take the clubhead straight back, and shallow out through the ball. It is too much!
Don’t forget the design principle (KISS). Keep it simple, stupid. We love the idea of having a swing thought but hate the idea of swing thoughts.
One thing at a time!
10. Make Practice Fun
Hitting a bucket of balls can be monotonous - some might call it boring. You need to find ways to make it fun and to keep your attention.
Our favorite “game” is to play holes. Think about your favorite golf course and hit shots as if you were playing those holes.
The first hole is a par 4?
Hit your driver and estimate what club you would need to hit the green. Hit that club. If you want, you can play the entire course this way while you are on the driving range.
11. Bring A Buddy & Make It A Competition
Practice is always better with a friend. You can play games and even have some side bets. A little money on each shot will force you to focus on making a great swing.
Work your way through all of the targets on the driving range and have “closest to the pin” competitions. Who can hit straighter drives? Long drives? You can turn any shot into a battle between you and your buddy.
There is no doubt - if you make practice fun, you will practice longer and get more out of it.
Driving Range Sessions FAQs
What is the best bag to bring to the driving range?
Bring a lightweight golf bag to the driving range. Save your back for your practice session. Check out the LOMA by Sunday Golf. Golf is easier with one of the most lightweight golf bags.
How do beginners use the driving range?
Far too often beginners simply slap golf balls instead of focusing on each shot. If you want to improve, you need to hit every range ball the same way you would on the golf course. Well, you can use one ball to try to hit the range picker!
How often should I hit the driving range?
The answer to this question will depend on your golf goals, but a good rule of thumb is to try and visit the driving range once a week. This will allow you to groove your swing and play consistently when head to the golf course for a round.
What is the best club to use at the driving range?
You want to practice all of your clubs when you visit the driving range. A common mistake made by beginners is only hitting drivers, but you should spend equal time on your fairway woods and irons.
Don’t Forget Your Short Game!
Yes, this article is about driving range tips, but we want to give you a reminder that you need to spend time working on your chipping and putting as well.
You can only play so well if you don’t know how to putt! We recommend the 50/50 rule. Spend half of your practice time at the driving range and the other half on the putting green.
Develop a well-rounded golf game and you will start shooting lower scores.
Good luck and play well!