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SMART Goals for Golf

Golf is not just a physical game but a mental challenge, requiring precision, patience, and continuous improvement. Setting goals in golf can help you enhance your skills, stay motivated, and track your progress. One of the most effective ways to set goals is by using the SMART framework. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Let’s explore how you can apply SMART goals to elevate your golf game. 

Specific: Pinpoint Your Focus 

The first step in setting a SMART goal is to make it specific. A vague goal like “I want to get better at golf” doesn’t give you a clear direction. Instead, pinpoint a particular area of your game you want to improve. A part of the role of a coach is to help you create goals that are meaningful to you. 

Example: “I want to increase my driving distance.” 

By focusing on a specific aspect of your game, you can create a targeted plan to achieve it. 

Measurable: Track Your Progress 

A goal should be measurable so you can track your progress and know when you’ve achieved it. This involves quantifying your goal. Example: “I want to increase my driving distance by 20 yards.” 

Having a measurable goal allows you to track your progress over time and stay motivated as you see improvement. Using data from Trackman and 3D motion capture we can measure our progress towards a goal. A coach’s role will be to point out the parts of the goal that are on track and the parts that need more attention. 

Achievable: Set Realistic Goals 

While it’s important to challenge yourself, your goal should also be attainable. Setting unrealistic goals can lead to frustration and burnout. 

Example: “I want to increase my driving distance by 20 yards in the next three months.” 

Ensure your goal is realistic given your current skill level and the time you can dedicate to practice. A Coach will advise based on your level of current ability and time available if this goal is realistic. 

Relevant: Align with Your Objectives 

Your goal should be relevant to your overall objectives in golf. Consider how achieving this goal will help you become a better golfer. Example: “Increasing my driving distance will help me lower my overall score and improve my performance in tournaments.” Make sure your goal aligns with your broader ambitions in the sport. Although the above statement sounds obviously positive it is not necessarily the case. If my accuracy or dispersion is petty wide and I achieve my goal of hitting it further, I will hit my drives further offline and likely worsen my scores. 

Time-bound: Set a Deadline 

A goal needs a timeline to create a sense of urgency and to keep you focused. Without a deadline, it’s easy to procrastinate. Example: “I want to increase my driving distance by 20 yards within three months.” 

Having a time frame helps you stay on track and provides a clear end point to measure your success. A coach will advise on whether your goal is likely to be achieved given your current level and how much time you can dedicate to the goal. 

Putting It All Together 

Using the SMART framework, here’s a well-defined goal: “I want to increase my driving distance by 20 yards within the next three months to improve my overall score and performance in tournaments.” 

Steps to Achieve Your SMART Goal 

1. Analyse Your Current Performance: Measure your current driving distance to establish a baseline. 

2. Create a Practice Plan: Develop a practice routine focused on improving your driving distance. This could include speed training, working on your movement for force production, and regular practice sessions. 

3. Seek Professional Guidance: Coaching can provide personalized plans and guidance. 

4. Monitor Your Progress: Regularly track your driving distance to see improvements and adjust your practice plan as needed. 5. Stay Committed: Stick to your practice schedule and remain patient. Improvement in golf takes time and consistent effort. 

Benefits of SMART Goals in Golf 

1. Enhanced Focus: By targeting specific areas of improvement, you can make your practice sessions more productive. 2. Increased Motivation: Seeing measurable progress can boost your confidence and motivation. 

3. Better Time Management: A time-bound goal helps you prioritize your practice time effectively. 

4. Greater Achievement: Achieving your goals can lead to a sense of accomplishment and drive you to set and achieve even higher goals. 


Setting SMART goals is a powerful way to improve your golf game. By being Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time bound, you can create a clear path to success. Whether you’re aiming to increase your driving distance, improve your putting accuracy, or lower your handicap, SMART goals can help you achieve your golfing ambitions. Start setting your SMART goals today and watch your game transform! 

Find a better way to learn 

John and Tom 


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