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To play your best golf, preparation is vital. That can even start before you get to the course.

It’s not just about getting a good warm-up, although that is important, but you can take several steps in your pre-round routine that will really help you perform to your full potential.

However, it can be tricky to know what things to prioritise before an important round of golf.

I’ve put together five key steps that you can follow that will help you perform your best before your next big game.

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Pre-round routine tips

Prioritise quality sleep before your round

Getting a good night’s sleep before a round of golf is the foundation of peak performance. Aim for seven to nine hours the night before you play. Plan ahead, limit screen time before bed, and avoid alcohol. Quality sleep enhances focus, reaction time, and overall cognitive function, and sets the stage for success once you tee it up.

Get hydrated before you get to the course

Arriving at the course well hydrated is often overlooked, but it’s crucial. Dehydration can severely impact your game. Aim to consume at least one litre of water per 25kg of body weight per day to ensure optimal hydration. In hot conditions, consider an electrolyte drink, such as Lucozade, to replace what you lose through sweat. It’s also wise to cut out coffee, as this will dehydrate you before a round.

golf pre round routine
Most golfers don’t drink enough on the golf course. (Credit: Getty Images)

Fuel your body pre-round

Nutrition is your energy source – don’t start a round running on empty. Prior to teeing off, try to eat a balanced meal containing a mix of healthy fats, carbohydrates, and protein. Opt for low-sugar carbs to sustain energy throughout the game and aim for 500-700 calories. Take an additional 500-700 calories of energy-boosting snacks like nuts, fruits, and energy bars to eat on the course and maintain stamina during the round.

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Get a pre-round warm-up routine

A dynamic warm-up is crucial to prevent injuries and enhance performance. Allocate around ten minutes for exercises that activate muscles in the lower body, core, and shoulders. Mobilise your ankles, hips, spine, and shoulders to ensure optimal range of motion to get your round off to a fast start.

Get your golf game ready

A technical warm-up readies your swing and gives you time to get a feel for the shots you’re going to need that day. Allocate time to hit woods, irons, chip shots, bunker shots, and putts. This ensures you’re comfortable with a range of shots before stepping onto the first tee. A solid technical warm-up will give you confidence to get your round underway.

After that, you’ll be ready to hit the first tee and play your best possible golf.

If you liked his pre-round routine tips and want more from ‘Dr Golf’ Zach Gould, you can head to his website, or subscribe to bunkered magazine, where he is a member of our Performance Panel.

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