10 Golf Practice Drills (Golf Swing, Chipping, Putting)

Best Golf Practice Drills

For any golfer to better their golf game over time, they have to use drills to improve their technique. Practice routines work better than just listening to instructions given by a golf expert.

Good golf drills exist to enable the golfer to feel the particular movement they need in their swing. They also aid the golfer on their way to becoming more confident when they see the progress made over time.

Below is a list of golf drills that any golfer should use during practice to gradually better their game. These drills also keep things going in the right direction after that. In addition, training helps golfers make just as much progress from home as they can at the golf course.

Resource: Step by Step Golf Practice Routines + Training System

List of Golf Drills to Add to Your Practice Routine

#1: The start and stop drill

Golfers must have balance throughout their swing, and this golf drill directly addresses this issue. Any golfer can be confident that they control the movement of their weight if they make it through the start and stop routine without feeling off-balance at any point.

Getting started with this drill, remove your golf driver from the bag and get a safe place to make some swings. In this drill, the golfer should choose an imaginary target for each swing, as this helps to practice how to line up over the ball correctly. When ready to swing, use these steps to work through this drill.

  1. Begin your swing usually and go through the takeaway with a smooth and uniform tempo. Then, stop your swing and hold yourself in place once you reach the point where your golf shaft is parallel to the ground.
  2. Start your swing up again after holding the previous position for a few seconds and proceed to where the golf club’s shaft is pointing up to the sky. Stop again and pause for a few seconds and then continue to the next step.
  3. Complete the backswing and pause once you get to the top. Hold the top of the backswing position for a few more seconds and swing down to the impact position. Pause yourself again at impact for two seconds, and then finish the drill.
  4. Lastly, swing from impact up to the finish position and hold yourself there while you watch your imaginary ball fly through the sky.

The whole point in the start and stop drill is to help you check your balance at every stop along the way. It precisely shows you where things are going wrong within the swing. Breaking the swing into a group of small pieces enables the golfer to gauge their quality throughout the action quickly.

Read Article: Best Short Game Golf Drills to Practice NOW

#2: The three-footer streak drill

All a golfer needs to do to execute the three-footer streak drill is to set up three feet away from the hole on the practice green and role in as many puts as possible in a row.

It is likely to be a worthy goal for golfers to make just five putts in a row if they are a bit shaky in their short putting. But the golfer ought to be able to easily make ten or more straight putts as time goes by.

A golfer can change the distances from three to five feet; that is to say, they can start at three feet to make five straight putts in a row, and as soon as these five putts drop-in, the golfer can go ahead to use the four feet distance and do a similar thing.

A golfer can finish off the drill from the five-foot mark with five more putts if they have been successful at four feet. If any of the putts miss the cap along the way, it is essential to go back to the three-foot mark and start again. Going back helps in improving your mechanics.

#3: Swinging a towel

Neither a golf club nor any of the other golf equipment is necessary for this drill. All you need to perform this drill is room to work with and a reasonably thin bath towel. When you find the towel to use for this drill, lay it out on the ground and roll it up on the long side, then tie a knot on one end of the roll.

The end of the rolled-up towel with the knot will work as your clubhead so that you take a standard grip around the alternate roled-up side of the towel. Then, with your grip taken and the knotted end of the towel hanging down toward the ground, take your stance as you do before any regular shot on the course and make your golf swing from start to finish.

The towel will feel like the softest golf shaft, which is the point of swinging a towel drill. A golfer will have to move through a swing with a steady and slow tempo for them to make any practical swing.

While the rotation of the golfer’s body controls their movement, they must let the knotted end of the towel swing through gradually. It is important to note that this drill gets better with a little more practice as time goes by. However, making a decent swing may seem to be difficult at the start.

Once you are through, go ahead and swing using the regular golf club and ensure that you feel the smooth and slow tempo felt while swinging the towel.

Read Article: Best Golf Swing Release Drills

#4: Chipping to a spot

Using the spot chipping technique from around the green is one of the best ways to improve your chipping method. This backswing drill helps the golfer focus less on the hole and more on the spot picked out on the green as your target.

The selected spot bases on the bounce and roll you expect as soon as the ball lands. If you choose the right spot, your ball will bounce and roll right up next to the cup.

To try out this drill;

  1.  Go to your course’s short game practice area and find a hole to use as your target.
  2. Pick out a landing spot that will be right for the shot and lay a small golf towel down on the green over that spot.
  3. Hit some chip shots as you try to land your ball on the towel. Again, having a physical item on the green enables you to easily see what you are trying to accomplish with your swing.
  4. Take the towel away after practicing and hit a few more chips as you picture the target in your mind.

Resource: Get the All Access Pass. Learn about our training programs with step by step practice drills, weekly schedules and routines to follow so you can break 90, break 80 or scratch golf. Plus access our video lesson library in addition to following the practice plans.

#5: Half-speed swings

Always consider using the half-speed swings drill to check on the quality of balance in your swing. Always choose a target for each swing because you may want to swing your driver for this drill.

You will swing the golf club with an effort of approximately 50%, and as a result, your ball will fly considerably shorter than your standard drives. You will use your regular swing all the way through, and all you need to do is move half-speed.

After making few shots in the half-speed drill, you can confidently determine any apparent problems within your method that need to be improved. For example, if you struggle to hold your balance at the top of the swing, you will need to check your backswing mechanics to see where things are going wrong.

#6: The Bad Lies drill

Although golfers would need to have access to the correct practice area to perform the bad lies drill, it is one of the best golf backswing drills. The golfer will have to hit various short game shots from as many bad lies as they can find

to use this drill.

It implies that a practice area that gives many kinds of lies would be ideal for this drill. An example would be a practice area with slopes, sand, and short grass that’s ideal for the bad lies drill.

Take five golf balls and toss them into the most challenging lies you can find as soon as you find the ideal practice area. It would be best if you gave yourself or your drill a variety of lies because dealing with several lies is what you will need to do on the golf course.

A golfer’s short game improves when he or she spends some minutes of the practice session chipping and pitching from bad lies.

#7: The Ladder drill

Many golfers fail to work on their speed control when they step into the green course, yet it is an essential part of the putting puzzle. The ladder drill will efficiently and quickly work on any golfer’s ability to control how the ball rolls with every stroke.

Follow the guidelines below for your putting practice sessions;

  1. Set five golf balls down on the putting green and find a relatively flat stretch of the green to use for the drill.  Stand 30 inches away from the hole you will use as the target.
  2. Walk up toward the hole and place a tee in the ground roughly 10 inches short of the hole, but the tee will be about 20′ away from where you are putting.
  3. For your first putt, the objective is to roll the ball barely past the tee but well short of the cup. If you can roll the ball past the tee, move on to the next ball, but you have to roll your putt past the first ball short of the hole.
  4. Continue this process with all five balls. The goal with each putt is to hit the current putt farther than the previous one but still short of the cup. If you can work through the five balls successfully, you have excellently worked on your speed control.

#8: The Headcover drill

Many beginner golfers love the headcover drill because it helps get rid of their tendency to slice the golf ball. It works by improving the path of your swing moving through the hitting area.

Any golfer struggling with a slice which is a significant challenge within the game, should try the headcover drill during their practice sessions following this process. Take the driver out of your bag while at a driving range. Set up the ball on the tee with the appropriate height and pick out a target for your shot.

Take the headcover from your driver just before taking your stance and place it on the ground outside of the target line. Position the headcover such that the swing coming in on a good path will completely miss it, and the swing coming from outside of it will contact the headcover.

Go ahead and make the swing now that you are in position but be sure to avoid hitting the headcover on the way through. As you get the idea of swinging on the right path, there may be a few failed swings at first but work through those failures, and you will begin to cleanly hit the ball minus the headcover getting in the way.

Read Article: Best Downswing Drills for Your Golf Swing Improvement

#9: The Worst ball drill

Golfers need full access to a golf course for this drill to take time to practice while going around. This drill is best when you are the only one on the golf course with enough space and time and not on busy days when you have to keep up with the game rules.

The worst ball drill needs a lot of space and time because the golfer will have to hit the shot twice as they make their way around the nine or eighteen holes. That means that instead of playing the best ball like many golfers like to do, you play the worst ball.

First, you have to hit two shots, then choose the worst shot of the two and use that as your spot for your next shots. Repeat this process all through the game round. You can choose if you want to go on with the drill while putting or not.

The worst ball drill teaches you how to play from hard spots around the course. The golfer also often has many opportunities to develop new skills because of the many poor spots when using this drill. A  golfer also learns how to handle adversity when playing patiently.

Resource: Golf Training Plan to Break 100, 90, 80, 70

#10: The Up and Down Game

This drill is a favorite by many golfers because of several reasons. It is an easy drill, and all you have to do is chip and put the ball in the game practice area as you try to get up and down as many times as


You can either play this drill as a nine-hole drill or an eighteen-hole drill with a par of two on every hole you play. The full version of the up and down routine has a par of thirty-six, and a nine-hole drill has a par of eighteen.

You can best perform the up and down drill with two golf clubs, a putter, one golf ball, and a wedge. Drop the golf ball around the green course, chip it toward a chosen hole and knock in the putt. Redo the same process many times as you wish to play but keep the score as you go.

Based on your scores, you can decide to have a practice partner and have a friendly competition, or you can take note of your best scores and try to beat them during your practice sessions.


Golf drills are undisputed when it comes to improving golf skills. They improve both physical and mental performance as golfers pick up valuable lessons as they progress along. You can leverage each drill to improve a different aspect of your game.

It is all a matter of identifying the problem area, picking out a drill that addresses it, and then hitting practice. Practice gives immense benefit as it eliminates any existing problems until they are a thing of the past.

Be aware that you will need to adapt some of the drills to address the problems as they change over time.

Golf Practice Plans to Follow

Thanks for reading today’s article!

Nick Foy – Golf Instructor

nick foy golf academy
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