Let’s face it: we are busier than ever. Yes, even golfers. So the question is, how do we get the most out of our game without filling in hours on the driving range?

The answer is course management.

How do we conquer the course using brain over brawn? Here is something for the average golfer to consider: if golf was played without pins to indicate where the hole was located, how would you tackle your approach shot?

You could almost guarantee your focus would be on placing your ball in the largest part of the green.

If we remove our focus from ‘pin-seeking’ to hitting the distance that gets us in the middle of the putting surface, then we drastically reduce the chance of posting big numbers on the scorecard.

Think about how many times we take on pins and end up leaving ourselves with an impossible up-and-down. It happens all too often and the average club golfer’s scorecard is not going to be damaged by a bogey. But a double-bogey will.

Too often, we fall into the trap of using our rangefinder to gather a distance to the pin. As fantastic as technology is, it can take the focus away from what really matters on the course.

The next time you tee up for a round, challenge yourself to forget the pin location and make your target the largest part of the green. If the average golfer can hit two or three more greens in a round due to improved course management, then a first step has been taken to improving the score.

Course management alone can drastically reduce the chances of being hurt by a big number. If you set yourself out to be the best strategic player you can be, I guarantee you that in the long run, your scores will consistently improve.

We can all benefit from a better golf IQ. Don’t be a pin seeker!

– Luke Waters is a teaching professional at The Vintage in the New South Wales Hunter Valley