Monday, November 12, 2012

Off Season Games - Worst Ball

I love to see players play!  By that I mean that hitting balls is great when you are working on mechanics, but that should only be a small portion of your practice time.  This week, I will post one game daily that you can play on the golf course that will provide you with great practice that is specific to a skill.  Today is Worst Ball.  It is a great game to help you handle adversity and accept your bad shots.  You will also get a great short game practice.

During my early years at Texas A&M, I had the pleasure of coaching a great player by the name of Kristina Edfors.  Kristina was from Sweden and invited me to visit her in the summer.  While I was in Sweden, I stayed at her house, along with another house guest, Fredrick Jacobson.  Kristina's little brother, Johan, who is a member of the European Tour, is one of Fredrick's best friends.  Freddie was fresh off a win in the British Boys and was about to turn pro.  He and Johan played a ton of tennis the week I was there, but we did get out to the course together once.  I asked them both how they practiced and Freddie told me that his favorite practice was to play Worst Ball.

He would play between 2-5 balls on every hole and hole each out.  His score for the hole was the worst score he made of all the balls.  I asked him what was his best and he told me he had recently shot under par while playing 5 balls and counting the worst score.  I was impressed.

Freddie is known for his short game skills (and table tennis).  I would imagine these Worst Ball games had a lot to do with his ability to both handle adversity and get it up and down from EVERYWHERE!

Fredrick Jacobson and Johan Edfors

Start with two balls on a day when the course isn't busy.  Hit both off the tee and play each until it is in the hole.  Of the two scores, write down your worst.  If you play with a friend, you can play match play on your Worst Ball.  Have fun with it!  Let me know how you score. 

You can also play the game as a Worst Ball Scramble.  Hit two balls off the tee.  Pick up the best shot and place it at the site of the worst shot.  Continue this until the ball is in the hole.  This will really test your consistency.

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