I recently caddied for someone who is a member of the same golf club Patrick Reed uses for practice. Although this guy doesn’t play golf day to day, he said he has seen Patrick out there practicing around 50 times. This next part is what caught my attention. Of the 50ish times he has seen Patrick Reed practicing, he has only seen Patrick on the driving range 3 times. All of the other times he noticed Patrick was on the putting and chipping greens working on his short game. I am sure Patrick Reed works on his golf swing a lot, but it doesn’t compare to the amount of time he is spending on his short game and putting.
PGA Tour players certainly strike the ball better than the average player but, when it comes to the physical skill set, the game within 70 yards is where the largest difference is between an average player and a professional player. Rolling good putts on the green and chipping the ball close is simply routine for professionals. For the average player, the green and shots within 70 yards is often a place their game is extremely inefficient. I see this every day while caddying. The average players I work with make their biggest mistakes around the greens leading to doubles and triples. Let Patrick be an example to you. If you are going to spend time practicing, take care of your swing, but spend A LOT more time on your short game and putting if you want to see consistency and improvement in scores.