Willow Crest Golf Course at Hilton Chicago Oak Brook Hills Resort

5 tips for keeping your golf game sharp this winter

Golf is a sport that takes work in order to be good. It’s hard to be a casual golf fan. For most people, golf becomes a kind of obsession. We understand here at Oak Brook Hills Resort. Of course, we have the Willow Crest Golf Club right on our property, looking at the amazing golf course from the huge windows in our building every day. We understand the desire to be out there in the sunshine trying to get that little white ball into the hole. 

Although the golf course and grounds retain beauty all year round (we are an Audubon Certified Wildlife Sanctuary, after all) during the winter there’s no golf here. How do you keep yourself from getting rusty over the long, cold, winter months if you are a golf fan. There are places that offer winter golf, but how do you prepare for a visit to a golf course near you in the summer, such as Willow Crest? 

Here are some winter golf tips for keeping your game sharp this winter. Of course, if you want to plan ahead and book a stay at the Hilton Chicago Oak Brook Hills Resort for your summer golf vacation, you can always book your stay now

1. Plan your 2020 golf visits 

Golfer putting at hole at Willow Crest Golf Club at Oak Brook Hills Resort

What kind of golfer are you? If you’re the type who just likes to spend time outdoors and doesn’t keep score, you can relax at this point. However, if you are one of the thousands of people for whom golf has become a kind of passion, then you might already be thinking about golf even as the snow piles up outside your door. Are you the type of golfer who eagerly travels to other cities, towns, even countries just for the chance to try a different golf course? 

Here’s the important thing to remember: there’s no better time to start planning your golf outings or golf vacations than right now.  

Right now is the time to decide when you first want to head back onto the course. Are you going to travel for it or stay home? Which course do you think represents the best challenge for you the first time out? Early in the year is a good time to plan because you will likely have your choice of tee times, perhaps early-bird reduced prices and more.

2. Look back on your 2019 golfing 

How did you golf in 2019? Was your score where you wanted it to be by the time the season ended? Did you improve? What are you goals for 2020? 

With the slow season, now is the time to look back on the golf you played last year. Where do you think you need improvement? If you aren’t sure, now might be the time to seek out an instructor, or to look online for tips, videos or suggestions.  

Before you can improve, it’s always good to look back on what you did before. That doesn’t mean you have to record your every swing on every hole on every course your play (although you are welcome to do so), pausing to think about what worked and what didn’t can provide a focus on your cold weather golf efforts. 

3. Use a simulator 

Golf simulator and golf lessons available at Hilton Chicago Oak Brook Hills resort and Willow Crest Golf Club

Of course, there are plenty of indoor opportunities out there, too. An indoor simulator may not give the true experience of standing in the warm sun in the middle of summer, but it’s a great way to get some practice without having to stand outside during a snowstorm.  

The fact is, the state of golf simulators has grown since they first appeared. There are very advanced simulators with a variety of programs. You can choose from nearly every golf course in the world. If you don’t want to view a golf course, there are simulators which can also be turned into driving ranges or help with improving the accuracy of your drives. 

When used in conjunction with an instructor or lessons, a golf simulator can help the teacher look at your swing, the way you hold the clubs and more. It may not be an exact replica of being outdoors at your favorite course, but it’s pretty close. 

4. Take golf lessons 

As mentioned above, a simulator used in conjunction with a golf instructor can be invaluable. As you probably know, golf has become a high-tech sport. Using cameras, sensors and other technology, modern golf instructors can easily analyze your swing using computers. Of course, the right instructor with years of experience should also be able to look at your swing just with their eyes and determine ways for you to improve. 

Of course, you can take golf lessons anytime of the year. However, during the off season may be the perfect time to get ready for your next trip to the links. Search for your local golf instructor online and ask about lessons, letting them know you’re trying to get ready for 2020. This is where knowing a little it about how you did in 2019 and the problems you had the prior year can help. 

5. Use indoor driving ranges  

There are indoor driving ranges, too. Plus, some driving ranges offer heated areas so you can still practice your swing and improve your drive length while being outside. To ensure you always get good weather, find one of the indoor ranges near your home and start practicing. Mixing things and using the heated outdoor ranges and indoor ranges will help. 

Remember, there are other indoor golf improvement methods, too. Indoor putting greens or even putting greens you can roll up and lay out in your own home can help you with the short game. If worse comes to worst, you can always use the time-testing method of putting a cup or glass on its side and putting away on the living room rug 

Oak Brook Hills’ Willow Crest Golf Club Can Help 

Of course, if you’re making your 2020 plans for golf, be sure to include Oak Brook Hills in your plans. If you want to travel for golf, Oak Brook Hills is the only Hilton golf resort in the entire Midwest. Willow Crest Golf Club is a championship golf course which mixes the beauty of nature with natural challenges for golfers in a variety of levels. 

Willow Crest Golf Club also offers golf instruction and a simulator on the property, which can be used all year long. 

Make your golf plans at Oak Brook Hills. To view all of our golf services, visit the Golf section of our website now and reach out today.  

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