Motor Learning, Podcast

New research shows best way to practice on the driving range w/ Dr Nicky Lumb

Listen in to learn about some awesome new research in the field of practice and learning conducted by Dr Nicky Lumb. You’ll learn how to maximize your time spent on the range and get some simple practical concepts to improve your practice.

Terms to understand for this episode

BLOCK PRACTICE: Hitting the same shot over and over again.

SERIAL PRACTICE: Practicing in a sequence, for instance hitting a shot to a target from 60, 70, then 80 yards.

“Often the results of one shot could help inform a player in their preparation for the following shot.”

RANDOM PRACTICE: Hitting a different club towards a different target on every shot.

“Random practice is mimicking what we do on the golf course. It’s mimicking actually playing golf.”

Now that you know all the terms hit that play button below and listen into the episode!
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Dr Nicky Lumb’s practical advice for your practice you can learn from her latest study:

Golfers need to make their practice challenging.

You mustn’t just turn up at the driving range, with two or three clubs, get that basket of balls, and hit hit hit until you run out of balls.

I always try to break practice down into three areas. Technical, when you’re going to be working on your golf swing. Training, when you’re trying to get repetitions in to actually increase accuracy and precision. Tournaments, where it’s one shot, one opportunity, and you’re actually trying to replicate exactly what you would do on the golf course in a competition.

If you want to improve your training, in terms of your accuracy on the course, the first thing to do is to stop thinking about swing technique.

Forget about you golf swing and to try to really zone in on hitting your shots as close as possible to a target.

I find that when players go to practice it seems that 99% of the time they’re actually thinking about what they’re doing in their golf swing. At the end of the round of golf it’s about total score. It doesn’t want to know how well you swung the club during your 18 holes.

I’ve been encouraging players to when they’re trying to do this area here, which is about training, to forget about their golf swing and zone in on hitting their shots as close as possible to a target. If you have a mid to high handicapper, they may get five balls, and try to hit a 7 iron towards a target at a specific yardage.

With those five balls, imagine a 20 foot radius from the target and count how many of those shots land within that 20 foot radius, and then write that number down. I think it’s really important with practice that players actually record their results and monitor them, so if practices become too easy, they can then make them a bit harder and they can make them more challenging.

If the practice is too challenging obviously they may need to make it a little bit easier because the purpose is to get better and to learn, but also we need to build players’ confidence at the same time if we can.

About Dr Nicky Lumb

Dr Nicky Lumb has a PhD in Optimising Practice for Peak Performance in Professional Golf and an MSc in Sports Coaching where she specialised in Elite Performance. Nicky is also a PGA Golf professional, ASQ Level 3 Golf Coach, and a Golf Machine Authorised Instructor (GSEB).

This enables her as a golf performance specialist to complement the work of her clients’ swing coaches. Nicky is also a TPI Level 3 Certified Golf Fitness Professional, TPI Level 3 Junior Performance Coach, NLP practitioner and Trackman Level 2 Coach. Over the last few years, Nicky has travelled all over the world to gain an extensive knowledge and understanding of elite performance, and she firmly believes that every golfer can always get better!

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Learn more on her website here
View the abstract here

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Founder and chief curator of the Golf Science Lab. Documenting what's going on in the world of research and beyond that can help you play your best golf on the golf course (when it counts). Join the movement of researched based coaching over trusting beliefs and what worked for one person a few decades ago. Follow on Twitter