Knowing your own game is a great starting point from which to improve.
Stats help identify your strengths and weaknesses. Tour players are lucky enough to have this done for them but, by dedicating just five minutes or so after your round, you can be just as well informed.
Running through your round and recording where tee shots finished, left, right, fairway for example; identifying if your approach shots miss long, short, left or right; knowing how many putts per green you took and if you managed to up-and-down from a missed green can help build a true reflection of your game.
This is vital information and, by recording it directly after a round, your understanding of your game becomes based on fact as opposed to opinion. Why is this so important, you may ask?
Read more -> Golf tips: 4 keys to better putting
Whether working on your game on your own, or with a PGA professional, being able to give an honest and factual account of where your game currently stands provides a better foundation from where to begin development.
It identifies trends in your game and areas that need work. It also shows your strengths. Patterns that have developed within your game may well provide important information to your coach with regard to technique and on-course application, allowing you to understand if you’re doing the same things on the range as you are on the course.
WATCH -> Golf tips: How to hole more putts
Pay attention to your putting
Pay particular attention to your putting performance, not just about how many putts you take during the course of a round, but be aware of whether you have a tendency to miss short/long or left/right.
This will enable both you and your coach to build a picture of your stroke and allow you to make a potentially easy ‘win’ through a subtle technique change, or improvement to your pre-shot routine and green-reading. Small changes can make a big difference.
Andrew Jowett is the Head PGA Professional at Gleneagles. For lessons, call Andrew on 01764 694343. Follow him on Twitter @andyj1504