Top Pre-Shot Routines

By Herm Otto

The pre-shot routine is intended to put your mind and body into the mental and physical zones to have the best chance of executing the shot successfully. This article will describe some tried and proven pre-shot routine components that you can use to get yourself in the zone for shot making.

Plan Your Shot

Step up to the tee box or lie and view the target. Determine the distance and any obstacles between the tee or lie and the target. Determine the ball flight (trajectory) needed to get the ball to the target. Consider the wind speed and direction. Examine the lie if your ball is in or along the fairway, in greenside rough or in a hazard.

Select the Right Club

Select the club that is right for the distance and trajectory, and for the lie condition. Remember to adjust the club selection based on flagstick placement on the green, wind conditions and elevation change between your shot and the target.

Loosen Up

Do a few stretches and full swings to prepare your muscles for the golf swing needed for the shot.


Stand behind your ball and envision the shot. Select an intermediate target between your ball and the actual target. Use this for your alignment when you address the ball.

Take Two Practice Swings

Step up to a location at your ball that is a pace back from where you will address the ball. Take two practice swings to prepare your muscle memory to take the swing with the proper stance and swing-speed.

Address the Ball and Take the Shot

Re-establish your intermediate target if necessary. Step up to your ball and assume the address position. Take the shot.

About The Author

Herm Otto is an architect and was a university instructor for over 25 years. He is also an avid golfer who began golfing 10 years ago. As a Demand Studios writer, Otto writes golf and travel articles for GolfLink. He now resides in Arizona.

Subscribe Today

Get our best training tips, videos, and tee times deals -- straight to your inbox

Tee Times Deals to your inbox
Join our mailing list today!


Don L.  Scored 92 at  Citrus Springs Dunnellon, Florida

Don L.  Scored 87 at  Citrus Hills, Oaks Hernando, Florida

Don L.  Scored 89 at  Citrus Hills, Meadows Hernando, Florida

David T.  left a review and uploaded photos of Cypress Knolls

Todd D.  just went PRO!

View Activity Feed

Video of the Day
Backswing Shoulder Turn Watch Video>>

Tee Time Deals

Wednesday, Mar 21 to Monday, Mar 26

Related Articles

Article Image Golf Course Clothing Etiquette

Team sports have uniforms. Individual sports, such as swimming or gymna...

Article Image When to Use What Golf Club?

From your first tee shot to your last putt, what club do you select for...

Article Image How to Speed up your Golf Play

Golf enjoyment for players, and profitability for courses, is dependent...

Article Image How to Dress Appropriately to Play Golf

Golf is a sport seeped in rich tradition. Dressing appropriately for th...

Article Image How to Stand When Hitting a Golf Ball

With their backs straight, knees flexed and heads steady, many beginnin...

View All Related Articles