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When you walk up to the tee, what do you feel? For many golfers, the answer is pressure. They think about all the things they have to do, their movements, their swing and how far away the hole is.

But all that creates pressure. Because in reality, all you need to do is get the ball within 30 yards of the putting surface.

In this episode, you’ll find out how to do just that so you can stress less about your game and finally see the results you’re looking for.

Show highlights include:

  • How to get into the perfect position for your birdie shot every time. (4:05)
  • Your “missed” shots aren’t all that bad–here’s how you can turn them into valuable shots that get the ball where you need it to be. (7:00)
  • If the pin isn’t dead-center of the green—don’t aim for the pin and do this instead. (14:00)
  • Why being short is key for most of the holes on your home course–wherever it is. (17:10)

Find out about the 3 most common mistakes that sabotage your game before you ever step up to the tee at: https://mygolfcode.com

Read Full Transcript

It's time for a new episode of “Faith N Fairways” with the founder, Brad Thorberg, who after more than 16,000 lessons taught to over 2,000 golfers has discovered the most forgotten and overlooked part of your golf game that is keeping you from playing your most consistent and confident golf ever.

Now, here is your host, Brad Thorberg.

Brad Thorberg: What is up, golfers from all over the world? Brad here, back at it again this week. We're diving into your golf game safe place 30 yards to the green.

Last week, we unlocked the 10,000-foot view of what this code is to breaking 90, “30, 30 and five.” Today we dive into the specifics of the first 30, the 30 yards from the putting surface. We're going to dive into just the simple math of it, how to start playing the golf hole, and then the biggest piece of it is how to avoid the big number, guys.

This is crucial for so many of you where you kind of have blinders on and where you just start taking the blinders off—and you see the horse. I mean, they wear the blinders. They don't get distracted.

Well, some of you are so distracted with the blinders on, focusing on the flag as creating these big numbers for you. So, we’ve got to kind of take these blinders or these goggles off and start looking at golf holes differently, and it will completely change your scoring out on the golf course with where you're at currently with your golf swing.

We've talked about that in the past episodes. Most of you are already there. You already have the full swing to go play good consistent golf under 90, but you're so focused on that swing that you're overlooking where the majority of your shots come from, and today we're diving in to the first piece and that is “How can we get within 30 yards of the putting surface consistently to avoid big numbers and allow to put the pressure?” Well, not the pressure. That's not the word we want to use, but it will be the opposite of pressure here, because we're not putting pressure. We're taking the pressure off or relieving the pressure of our short game by positioning ourselves in a good spot. So, we're taking pressure away from our short game by already saying, Hey, I'm putting myself here to make this so much easier to chip and pitch within 30 feet, because the next step is “How do I get within 30 feet?”

So, today, how do we find a safe place? I like to call it the “safe place.” So, when you start looking at the green, and we talked last week about how you want to start looking at the hole backwards from the green to the first tee, because basically you want to start teeing off with clubs that allows you to have a mid-iron somewhere within 30 yards of the putting surface. You want to start looking at par-3s going, Where's the worst place to put this and where would be the best place to miss the green? And now you start aiming in that direction with the club that either puts you just short or long, but you're taking big numbers out of play. And we want to start looking at this.

So, what you want to do is you want to look at the green and you want to take kind of a marker in your head and think, Alright, we’ll trace an outline outside that green 30 yards, and you go, Alright, [03:00] where's the worst trouble? Is it on the right, the left, short, long? And as soon as you look at that, you go, Alright, I want to be 30 yards away. So, the simple math here is you want to start kind of calculating, Alright, what are my two shots to get within 30 yards of this screen? It could be a driver. It could be a hybrid off the first tee. And then, from there, you're trying to pick an iron that positions you either on the shorter side or the longer side, and then we aim left or right based on the trouble.

So, when you start looking at these holes backwards, you go, Alright, where's the worst place? Is the green severely sloped from back to front and there's no trouble up for it. Well, being 30 yards off the front of the green would be ideal because now it's just a little pitch and run, a very short swing, and the shorter the swing, the less room and margin for error. So, you're always looking for “Alright, where's the simplest place to chip or pitch from into the screen, or where's the worst trouble? Is it a bunker? Is it water? Is it out of bounds over here? Is the green really narrow on that side? I'd rather be chipping from the opposite side into the fat part of the green.”

You want to start looking at the green and going, Alright, where do I want to be hitting my birdie shot? Do I want to be on the left or right side based on trouble, and do I want to be in front or behind based on trouble and slow? So, you're always looking for those couple of things. Once you kind of decide where you want that shot to be heading, from there we just start doing the math?

We go, Alright, hole is 380 yards and I want to be short left, so now I can minus 15 yards from the distance from the middle of the green to the edge of the green, and then I can minus another 30 from edge of the green out to the short left. Now I’ve got 45 yards and now the hole is really only playing 335 yards. So, now I can technically if you hit 150-yard seven-iron, now you could technically go five-hybrid, probably a seven- or eight-iron, little chip and run into the middle of the green, one- or two-putt par bogey, right on track. See how simple that was.

So, you want to start looking at your safe place. You want to look at the green and go, Where's the position that's the easiest to chip from or where's the worst trouble where I can make the biggest number? Is it left or right? To find that first, I want to be on the left half or the right half of the green, so we’ll say it's the left half. Alright, now do I want to be on the short side or the long side? Is there more trouble front or back? Well, the back is slopes way down a hill, thicker off the front. There's no trouble up there in the front left, so I want to be there, or maybe there's a creek that runs in front. Well, now it's a no brainer. I want to be on the back half. Now do I want to be chipping from the left or the right? Well, the pen is tucked on the far right side. It’s real close to the edge of the green on the right. So, now I'd much rather be long left with all this green to work with, so I can just pitch and run it into the middle back half of the green and let it release across the green.

The last thing I want to do is be long right with very little green to work with, having to hit a very difficult flop shot [06:00]. It’s always looking for the simple chip, the low chip and run. That's the easiest, most basic chip and pitch for the average golfer to hit, because it's a shorter motion. You're using a less lofted club, so there's more face to get on the ball. You just execute it better. So, you're always looking for “Alright, what gives me more green to chip and run it from and where's the trouble at?”

So, that's how you start looking at these holes when you're trying to find your safe place, and so we get into some scenarios here. I look at hole-1 of my hometown country club I grew up on, and it's a par-5, but there's a bunker, middle of the green left in a bunker, middle front, right, and it's a hard sloping front half of the green. And on the back, there's a hard slope in the front and there's this big mound and it rolls off to the back off a very tight lie. So, being left, right, pin high I don't want to be, and being long I don't want to be.

So, now I'm purposely picking an approach shot that I know if I hit it super well, it'll barely get to the front edge of the green, and if I miss it like I probably will seven out of 10 times for most of you listening, it gets me in that 20–30-yard window short, but it's taking the bunkers out of play; it's taking a long out a play, and it’s putting me in a position to have a little pitch and run into that hill and getting it into the middle of the green where I can easily two-putt and walk away with a bogey, if not one-putt for par depending on the pin place, and I’m not even worried about where the pin is until I'm rolling my 30-footer to five feet, right.

So, that's how you want to start looking at it. That's just a super simple scenario of how you would choose that club. So, if you're sitting there and you're shooting in the middle of the green or the pins in the middle, and it says 150 yards, you’d better not be hitting your 150 yard club, because if you lose it to the right or pull it to the left, you're now in a bunker with a weird humpback green sloping hard to the front that you could all of a sudden hit out of the bunker and roll off the front of the green, and now you have to chip back up. Then, you chip in two-putt and now you're looking at a double-bogey.

So, we’ve got to start looking at things differently and this is what this episode is all about. It’s finding our safe place. S, from there, if you are 150 out to the middle of the green and it's 15 yards to the front—and I'm just using that because on average, guys, on average, the average green is 30 yards wide and 30 yards deep, on average. I know a lot of you play courses where it's very different. Greens are different all over the place, but that's the average—so, if you know you’ve got 15 yards from the pin to the front edge of the green, now you're looking at 135 yards max.

So, you're going, Alright, if I flush my nine-iron and maybe get on the very front edge, and I take the bunkers out of place, so now it's a nine-iron shot. You're not trying to kill it because you're telling yourself, Hey, 20 yards short is a simple up and down. It's a pitch and run to the middle. And if we have the short game, we're talking eight, 10, 15 foot putt chance for par. This is how you’re [09:00] going to start to make some pars and just shatter 90 in no time, guys, no time, shattering 90 in no time by starting to find your safe place, that first 30 of the “30, 30, 5” code to breaking 90. It’s finding that safe place 30 yards from the putting surface. Not the pin. The putting surface.

Even though Brad has cracked the code to consistently breaking 90, there are still three major mistakes he's found from working with over 2,000 clients that will sabotage your round before you get to the first tee. Head to www.MyGolfCode.com now to receive your free guide where he outlines all three faults and provides you with some easy action steps to start playing more consistent golf today.

So, another scenario I think of here is hole-8 in my hometown Country Club has huge mounds on the right and the left, on the left, the big pond and thick rough over the green, big mound and it slopes like 15 feet down a hill to the water pump house. So, here the clear leave is to be short and right, 30 yards short and right. And this is a long, long green, so a lot of times people sit there and go, Man, I’ve got to get it onto the green, especially if the pin is in the back. Well, no you don't. That's the mistake most of you are making. You're seeing this pin in the back left and you're thinking you have to hit the ball ahead, and here's what happens: you may hit a perfect tee shot.

And this is what I love about this hole. It's a downhill dogleg left. You take driver out of your hands because there's too much club. So, for most of you, you're hitting between a six-iron and a three wood off this tee box. A lot of times we're hitting this fairway, but you're standing there now thinking you have to hit a 160-yard shot to this long back left pin with water left, mounds left.

So, now if you flush the thing and you’re over, if you pull it out just a bit left or you hit it a hair short and left, and it kicks off the hill into the water, that’s just not the smart play. But you're thinking now you have to hit the six-iron perfect or five-iron perfect, and you create after a great tee shot and great position a big number because you didn't sit there and go, Alright, where’s 30 yards around this green? Well, 30 yards left is water. Thirty yards over, not where you want to be; you're in the pump house with a really difficult up and down. Thirty yards right, you're off the hillsides in some pine trees. So, the only place to leave yourself is short and, ideally short right.

So, you take water out of play, but most amateurs would stand there grabbing a six- or five-iron, thinking, Oh, man, I’ve got to hit this perfect shot to the middle back half of this green. There's all this trouble, and you're just tense and you're nervous, and you're going to make bad contact because you're already going to make bad contact seven out of 10 times.

But if you sat there and you said, Wow, from where I'm sitting, it's only 130 yards to the front right of this green, now you're sitting there grabbing a pitching wedge nine-iron, but you don't mishit too often and you're just throwing it up to the front, and then, for most of [12:00] you, you could putt from there. Now you're just three-putting for a bogey, two-putting from the front to the back half of the green, funneling down there, giving yourself a chance, guys.

It's all about giving yourself a chance at par, tapping in for bogey. That's how we consistently break 90, but you gave yourself a chance. Because if you sat there and you hit a six-iron, and yet get locked in the water, you're not giving yourself a chance, because now you're hitting par from a drop area where you still have to go over the edge of the water over a mound to a tucked pin, and you're looking at double or triple.

But if you just simply go, Think of the stress free—I mean, this is called stress-free golf right here—you just hit to the corner with an iron. Now you're hitting a pitching wedge to the front right off the green. Now you're just whacking a lag putt up over the hill to the back left to the green, and you're giving yourself a chance at par, tapping in bogey because bogey is your new par for someone trying to consistently break 90, and you just walk off a hole that you could have been staring double or triple the face with the par bogey, because you played it correctly, because you made the right choice when you looked at that 30-yard halo—we should just start calling that the 30-yard halo around the green, your saving grace around the green because that's really what it is—because now you're positioning yourself not with where the pin is, but with where the easiest chip or pitch is, because you're going to hit the green sometimes.

You might catch that pitching wedge, a groove thin, and now you carry it to the front half of the green, thin and a bounce, and skips and checks, and you're in the middle of the green and you look like a genius. And you have a 35-foot birdie putt and you tap in for par. So, it means it's going to work in your favor more times than it won't by positioning yourself in that 30-yard safe place than trying to go at pins.

I mean, you hear it all the time on tour. Half the pins you see on Saturday and Sunday are sucker pins. They're not hitting at the pin for a reason because it's a great way to make double-bogey, and for most of you, if the pin is not dead center of the green, it's a sucker pin for most of you who can't break 90, because you don't have the ability to hit solid shots and control them anyway.

So, you need to start playing to these zones—right, left, front and back—so, you're trying to play to these halves and front and backs with your club selection to take the big number out of play; make a very simple pitch and run, one or two putts; start making a lot more pars and bogeys, taking the doubles and triples and snowmens off the scorecard, and, guys, you're going to be breaking 90 in no time.

So, that is how we find our safe place. That's how you start doing the math as you started thinking, Hey, middle of the green to the front or back is this many yards, plus or minus, it’s 30 to that distance, once you find the safe place.

You want to start, again, just a recap of this today, so, so crucial, because it's what puts you in the place to make the easy chip, the easy pitch, which we dive into next week. We call it “Ball Toss for a Million Bucks”. It’s how you're going to start it, guys. This is just [15:00] mind-blowing.

But “Ball Toss for a Million Bucks” is what we're going to cover next week, because when you start looking at your chipping and pitching that way of tossing a ball in familiar boxes on the line to get it the closest, that's how you should be hitting your chip and pitch. For most of you here, you realize, Oh, that's just a low little pitch and run, because they have more control over the lower the ball goes. So, when we start looking at “Alright, where's my safe place 30 yards out that allows me to hit a little pitch and run or even a putt from 15 feet off the edge of the green in the fairway?” and putting from there is such a higher percentage shot than trying to hit a chip from the rough, right?

So, finding your safe place is so crucial to this code. Getting a 30 yards off the edge of the green is so, so crucial, because it sets up the easy chip, which then allows us to one- or two-putt and start making a lot of pars and bogeys, guys. So, you’ve got to start doing the math, You simply want to look at the green and go, Do I want to be on the left half or the right half, and do I want to be short or long?

Once you do that, you’ve found your quadrant and you do the math. You’re saying, Hey, it's 10 yards from the middle to the edge, plus another 30 or minus another 30, and you’ve got your number, so now you're picking your clubs selection from the tee box in the fairway, your club selection from the par-3 area, and you're strategizing all three shots on the par-5 to make it the easiest, because seven-iron, seven-iron, seven-iron is a whole lot easier than trying to rip driver and fairway wood, and make a triple bogey on the par-5. So, now you're just doing simple math, making, choosing the shorter clubs possible to get you to that safe place.

So, hopefully, that helps you guys understand the first part of the code—finding your safe place, doing the math, looking at the green going right, left, short, long. From there, you’ve got your yardage. Now you go back to that first. Now you go back to that tee box, first tee box, whichever tee box you're on, but you go back to the tee box and now you're strategizing, Alright, what clubs do I need to hit from the tee and from the fairway to give me that club to be in that safe zone?

And for the majority of golf holes, you will play literally probably 16 out of 18 on your home course. Being short is key. Now it's just short, right or left, so you're making every hole shorter, which means you don't have to hit driver. You're choosing shorter clubs from tee boxes and from fairways, which just makes it easier to hit. You're going to have way more success and you're putting yourself in a position to get that next shot within 30 feet of the cup because you're giving yourself the easier chip and run or pitch and run, which we'll dive into next week, the concept of “Ball Toss for a Million Bucks.” You don't want to miss that.

Everybody from the beginner golfer to my mini tour guys, “Ball Toss for a Million” just simplifies instantly, instantly simplifies what club to pick and how to execute the shot, and we're going to dive into that, and just to help give you the confidence next week in your chipping and pitching game, and we're going to give you [18:00] my number one drill to start improving your chipping and pitching instantly next week, so stay tuned for next week. Don't want to miss that. That's going to help every golfer out there with their chipping and pitching with the concept of “ball toss for a million.” You don't want to miss that. So, stay tuned next week, guys.

This is awesome. I love the progress and the feedback I'm getting from you guys. I can't wait to get into the short game side of things with the chipping, the pitching and the putting here over the next few weeks because that will just change everything for you guys, because it truly is 60–65 percent of your score and for most of you we're just not...we're doing it the hard way, and we’ve got to stop doing it the hard way and start doing it the easy way by unlocking this code, understanding the short game and just putting yourself in a position to win.

So, that is it for this week. I can't wait for next week to dive into “Ball Toss for a Million.” You don't want to miss it. Until then, get out. Play some golf. Start implementing these things. And we will talk to you next week.

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