Growing your game: The 9 Best Golf Tips for Beginners

By Anthony Mahone
Updated on
golf tips for beginners

Golf, often referred to as a gentleman’s game, is a sport that combines precision, strategy, and athleticism. While playing golf for the first time might seem daunting, fear not – this guide is here to equip you with the best golf tips for beginners.

We will cover everything from understanding the golf swing basics to golf etiquette. We will uncover the most important golf tips for beginners.

But remember, golf tips can only go so far. Most players will not put the time, effort, and long practice sessions into improving. You will! This great game has so much to offer; we hope you enjoy it as much as we do. So, grab your clubs, and let’s dive into the world of golf!

1. Golf Clubs For Beginners and What To Wear Golfing

I know, I know. You want to play. However, having the right equipment and attire is essential before you consider teeing off. A standard beginner golf club set includes a driver, irons, wedges, and a putter. As a beginner, investing in a complete set that matches your skill level is a wise choice.

Additionally, comfortable golf shoes with proper grip are essential for maintaining stability during your golf swing. Finally, regarding equipment, you will need golf balls, tees, and a glove (optional). Finding a beginner-friendly golf ball is important.

Most golf courses have a dress code requiring collared shirts, slacks, or shorts. Familiarize yourself with the specific dress code of the course you’ll be playing on, and ensure you’re properly dressed.

2. Golf Swing Basics

How To Grip A Golf Club

The foundation of a successful golf swing lies in your grip. The grip stands at the top of all the golf tips for beginners. Different types of grips include the overlapping, interlocking, and ten-finger (baseball) grip. You can experiment with each to find the most comfortable, allowing maximum control over the club.

When holding a golf club, you want to hold it loose enough to not “death grip” the golf club but tight enough not to let go. By starting with a proper golf grip, you ensure the first step in the foundations for a good golf swing. As Ben Hogan once said, “Good golf begins with a great grip.”

golf tips for beginners
Neutral Golf Grip
overalapping golf grip
Overlapping Grip
interlocking golf grip
Interlocking Grip
Golfer holding golf club with baseball grip

Baseball Grip

To learn more about the grip, visit our article on How To Grip a Golf Club for Optimal Performance.

Golf Posture

Most beginner golfers have poor posture. There is good news, though! You can fix it with dedicated practice on the driving range, golf course, and putting green. (yes, putting requires good posture as well)

Having watched countless hours of golf, combined with playing with hundreds, if not thousands, of other golfers, I know poor posture directly affects the ability of the golfer to make a full swing. A full shoulder turn allows you to achieve maximum distance and ball speed. 

Let’s start by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and slightly bent knees. Keep your spine straight, maintain a natural curve, and keep your chin up. Keep your eyes peeling downward, maintaining proper sight of the golf ball. Distribute your weight evenly on both feet, favoring the balls of your feet. Keep an athletic, solid stance.

golf posture at setup

A solid grip and stance create the groundwork for a powerful and accurate swing.

Golf Alignment

Of all the golf tips for beginners, proper alignment significantly impacts the direction the golf ball travels. Far too often, I see golfers with poor alignment. As stated before, a good grip allows for a good swing. Good posture allows for a full swing. Lastly, proper alignment allows for a good direction of travel for the golf ball.

Take a long iron, 3,4, or 5 iron, and lay it on the ground directly in sight of the intended target. This position will allow your feet to properly align with the intended target.

Second, take the golf club in your hand, and place it directly on your hips. This position will be about where your belt line is. Ensure that your hips are in direct alignment with the intended target.

Lastly, place the same golf club along your collarbone or upper chest area, and ensure that your shoulders are in proper alignment with your intended target.

josh gilkison golf alignment on driving range
Proper Alignment

By having all three checkpoints in the correct alignment, you are ready for the golf swing itself.

Golf Alignment Sticks

While practicing, we recommend the use of alignment sticks. While working on any directional practice, we highly suggest you use alignment sticks. Our recommended alignment sticks are the Asyxstar Golf Alignment Stick from Amazon. They work great for their intended purpose and collapse down to fit easily within your golf bag.

3. Chip Shots and Golf Putting Tips

One of the best golf tips for beginners is to start with short shots and putting. Chipping and pitching are essential skills for navigating the area around the green. Practice these shots to develop control and accuracy when you start playing golf. As you become more comfortable, move on to mid-range shots and gradually work up to full swings with longer clubs at the driving range.

Putting is another crucial aspect of the game. Practice your putting stroke to develop a smooth and consistent motion. Remember, the goal is to sink the ball with as few strokes as possible!

4. Golf Swing Basics

The golf swing basics can be broken down into three main components: the backswing, downswing, and follow-through. During the backswing, rotate your hips and shoulders while keeping your wrists firm. The downswing involves smoothly transitioning from the backswing by rotating your hips forward and releasing your wrists.

A full follow-through completes the swing, with the club pointing in the direction you want the ball to go.

Golf Backswing

The backswing in a consistent golf swing is an essential element that sets the stage for a powerful and accurate shot. It’s the initial movement where the club moves away from the ball.

A good backswing involves a smooth and controlled rotation of the upper body, hips, and shoulders while maintaining a slight knee bend. As the club is brought back, the wrists hinge naturally, creating an “L” shape at the top of the swing. This position stores energy that will be released during the downswing.

austin schoonmaker golf backswing

A balanced and synchronized backswing ensures proper positioning and helps in generating maximum clubhead speed, leading to more consistent power and precision.

Golf Downswing Sequence

The downswing is a vital component of a successful golf swing. The downswing happens directly after the backswing. It is when the club moves from the top of the swing down to hit the golf ball.

A good downswing involves a gradual, controlled weight transition from the back foot to the front foot. This will add power to the shot. The hips and lower body lead, followed by the upper body and arms, creating a smooth and coordinated motion.

The wrists hinged at the top of the backswing now release their stored energy, allowing the club head to accelerate and make solid contact with the ball.

austin schoonmaker top of swing

Golf Swing Follow Through

The follow-through caps off a good golf swing and plays a vital role in achieving a successful golf shot. It’s the movement that occurs after the ball has been hit. A proper follow-through involves the continuation of the swing’s momentum in a balanced motion.

The body rotates fully towards the target, with the hips facing forward and the back foot rising onto the toes. The club moves gracefully across the body’s front, pointing towards the target. A smooth follow-through demonstrates a well-executed golf swing and helps maintain accuracy and balance.

josh gilkison follow through golf
austin schoonmaker follow through

While these steps might sound straightforward, mastering the golf swing takes time and practice. Most golfers will not video their swing. Consider recording your swings to identify areas for improvement and work on them gradually. You can even show them off to your local PGA golf professional.

Golf Swing Finish Position

A strong finish is the completion of a successful golf swing. Point your body to the target and finish in a well balanced position with the majority of the weight on your front foot.

josh gilkison golf swing finish

5. Crafting Pre-Shot Routines

A pre-shot routine can work wonders for your consistency on the course. Create a ritual that involves aligning your shot, taking a few practice swings, and visualizing the trajectory of the ball. This routine prepares you physically and mentally, setting the stage for a focused shot.

Consistency breeds confidence, and a pre-shot routine can help you maintain a consistent approach to every shot you take. We recommend a pre-shot routine on every shot. This will develop mental focus and clarity on every shot.

6. Golf Course Layout

Every golf course is unique, with varying layouts, hazards, and challenges. Before teeing off, study the course’s design for a few moments. Golf course layouts are printed on scorecards, tee box placards, or GPS systems provided within today’s golf carts.

Identify potential hazards, the location of bunkers, and pin placements. This is one of the lesser spoke golf tips for beginners.

7. The Art of Patience and Perseverance

Golf is a game that requires patience and perseverance. At Swingcrafters, we believe this is one of the most important golf tips for beginners. It takes time and dedication to learn how to play golf.

Don’t be discouraged by initial challenges or a few off-target shots. It is not a game of perfection but rather a game of limiting major mistakes. Remember, the best golfers started as beginners.

Rome wasn’t built overnight, and neither will your golf game. One thing all successful golfers have in common is they spend a lot of time on the driving range and even more time playing golf.

Embrace the learning process, celebrate small victories, and maintain a positive attitude. With practice and dedication, you’ll see progress over time. Remember, in the end, it is just a game. To track your progress, we recommend obtaining an official GHIN Handicap.

8. Golf Etiquette

Golf etiquette is as important, if not more important, than the physical aspects of the game. When playing golf, you can show respect for your fellow players by adhering to the principles of courtesy and sportsmanship.

Golf course etiquette involves repairing divots, raking bunkers, and being mindful of your pace of play.

While on the green, be aware of stepping in the line of your playing partner. The putting line is the anticipated path between where the player is on the green and the hole. Trekking in the line of your playing partner causes unintentional indentations on the green.

Finally, silence is crucial when someone else is making their swing. (Unless you’re at the Waste Management Phoenix Open). Remember to remain vigilant when your playing partners or other golfers are swinging.

Many beginners need help with the importance of proper golf etiquette. Learning and adhering to golf etiquette makes the game more enjoyable and reflects positively on your character.

As a beginner golfer, I remember playing with a particularly experienced player. His name was Jeff Davis. Mr. Davis was a 20-25 handicap player. Jeff knew he had plenty of room to improve. What Mr. Davis lacked in golfing ability, he made up with proper golf etiquette.

He was committed to growing the game and teaching beginner golfers like myself proper etiquette. He was not rude. He did not swear. (at least not to me) He did not whine. He educated. He taught me proper golf etiquette. In turn, I became a better golfer. Thank you, Mr Davis.

9. Beginner Golf Lessons

Investing in lessons from a PGA golf professional can significantly accelerate your progress as a beginner. A PGA golf professional can identify and correct flaws in your swing, provide personalized tips, and guide you through various aspects of the game.

Group lessons can provide camaraderie with fellow beginners, while individual beginner golf lessons offer personal attention. Once on the course, you will slowly start to enjoy playing golf.

Many golfers take years to get better, but new golfers (like yourself) can and will get better quickly as long as you spend time learning, practicing, and playing golf.

Golf For Beginners Summary

As a beginner, embarking on your golf journey is exciting and challenging. By understanding the fundamentals, honing your swing, and embracing the game’s etiquette, you’re well on your way to becoming a successful golfer. You can take the golf tips for beginners we provided and make minor improvements daily. We also have an article on the standard terms you will come across on the golf course.

Remember, golf is not just a physical challenge – it’s a mental game that requires strategy, focus, and discipline. So, armed with these golf tips for beginners, step onto the course confidently and enjoy improving your game one round at a time.

Photo of author


Anthony is the founder of Swingcrafters and a lover of all things golf. Anthony was the individual champion of the 2005 West Virginia State Golf Tournament and worked as the Assistant Golf Professional at Heatherwoode Golf Club in Ohio. He is a career Firefighter/Paramedic and loves the outdoors.