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advice from the tour

Jessica Korda’s advice for junior golfers will make you rethink your practice routine

February 21, 2024

Octavio Passos

Jessica Korda, just days after giving birth to her son, answered a slew of questions on Instagram. One was about young golfers: Someone asked for one piece of advice she would give to junior golfers. And the answer is one every junior golfer – and golfers in general – should take to heart.

“Play, play, play,” Korda wrote. “Don’t sit on the range all day long. Be creative. Don’t be afraid to try new shots and have fun with it. Make it competitive with your friends.”

Spending hours on the range, trying to create a perfect swing is an easy trap for any golfer to fall into. While the range is certainly helpful, don’t forget to spend ample time on the course. Jorge Parada, who works with several LPGA players, agrees with Korda’s advice.

“I believe that the majority of maturing golfers, juniors and adults, would benefit tremendously from spending large amounts of time on the golf course,” Parada said. “Learning how to score and how to react to different situations is something only learned on the golf course.”

You’re playing golf on the golf course, not the range, so you want to make sure whatever you’re working on while on the range works on the golf course, too.

Avoid the driving range trap

"In order to become an elite level junior golfer, and to improve as an adult golfer, you must understand who you are as an athlete and as a player and how to utilize all your strengths to dissect a golf course to the best of your ability with what you currently have.”

Hitting from a perfectly flat surface, where there are no real penalties for hitting a bad shot, doesn’t teach you how to best use your game on the golf course. Parada has seen plenty of juniors who can hit shot after perfect shot on the range, but only record mediocre performances in competition.

"Ultimately, becoming a champion requires talent, skill, work ethic, sacrifice, creativity and most of all, knowing how to score the ball when your game isn’t as pure as you’d love it to be,” Parada.

The only place you can learn how to do that, is on the golf course. Though pertinent to junior golfers developing their games, this is advice every golfer can follow.

To learn more about how to approach practicing the right way, listen to this week's episode of the Golf IQ podcast (and subscribe right here!)