How to Break 100 in Golf – Complete Guide for Beginners

In this guide, I’m going to show you how to break 100 in golf by outlining the proven steps that have helped many of our readers on their journey to breaking 100 on the scorecard.

You probably started out playing golf socially with your friends and didn’t care much about score. But after making some pars and bogeys you’ve gotten hooked on golf and now you’re starting to set expectations for yourself on the golf course like breaking 100.

Below you’ll find the following:

  • Best Tips for Breaking 100
  • Best Drills to Practice to Break 100
  • Driving Range Practice Tips
  • Short Game Tips
  • Putting Tips & Drills

And you should definitely complete these practice plans if you want to break 100 quickly!

Scoring Tips to Break 100

There’s a cool rule of thumb in golf that is called 9+9 = 99. This means if you make 9 bogeys and 9 double bogeys, you’ll shoot a 99 and achieve your goal of breaking 100.

Aim for these standards first! Par is great but too many beginners don’t have the skillsets needed to make pars yet and shoot themselves in the foot by trying to force a par that had little chance of happening.

The key to breaking 100 is avoiding blow up holes where you score triple bogey or worse! Set your expectations lower and play with less risk.

Make smarter golf shot choices. For example, when you find yourself in trouble, hit back out into the fairway instead of trying to reach the green.

You know this stuff already, you just have to mentally stick to it and stop letting the hero shots creep into your mind.

Make the Right Club Selection Decisions

To break 100 in golf is pretty simple, but here’s where most golfers go wrong…they try to hit drivers and woods off the tee.

Instead, you need to use your most accurate “long golf club” for every shot until you get down near the green. This means choosing the golf club that you can hit straightest while still producing 100+ yards of distance.

Be okay with moving the ball 300+ yards in 2-3 shots instead of trying to do it in one shot. You’d rather play down the fairway than wasting strokes in the trees and rough.

Test Yourself to Find Your Best Club

Imagine yourself on a tee box and you’ve got your driver, wood, hybrid, 5 iron, 6 iron, 7 iron all right next to you like you do on the driving range. Now imagine the fairway and any golf shot that misses the fairway gets disqualified.

After hitting one ball with each of these clubs, which club do you feel is most likely going to be the winner for hitting the ball the furthest while staying on the fairway? Which club will likely produce this result the most times if you hit 100 balls with each club?

For most golfers trying to break 100, it will not be your driver or fairway wood. Instead, the winning club that you consistently hit the fairway with and produces the most distance will likely be either a hybrid or your 6-iron / 7-iron.

But most golfers don’t think about the math of a hole on the golf course and don’t realize how possible it is to reach the green using nothing more than your 7 iron. I’ve broken 80 before playing with only a 7 iron.

Resource: Try our golf training plan to quickly lower your scores

The average Par 4 distance is 380 yards. Some par 4’s can go as high as 500 yards and others can be as short as 230 yards.

If your best club in your golf bag is a 7 iron that you hit 150 yards, then you only need to swing it twice and you’ll find your ball sitting within 100 yards of the green, where a wedge can take over as the next club you hit.

Compare this to where you normally stand after two golf shots and I bet being within 100 yards of the green is better than the current result your experiencing.

Get Really Good at Pitch Shots in Golf

The next step to breaking 100 in golf is fixing your short game. Short game is super important if you have dreams of making pars and bogeys on a consistent basis.

Using the golf tips above, we’ve already helped you get yourself within 100 yards of the green after two shots on most Par 4 holes. Now your short game takes over as you finish out the remaining shots inside 100 yards.

For this, you’ll need to become great with your pitching wedge. Most golfers can hit their pitching wedges in excess of 100 yards so it’s the proper club selection when you find yourself getting within 120 yards or closer to the green.

Practice hitting 20, 40, 60, 800, 100, and 120 yard shots with your pitching wedge on the driving range. Buy an entire bucket off balls where the only golf club you’re hitting is your pitching wedge.

I promise, if you do this for a week straight and hit 500+ balls, you’ll see quick improvement with this scoring club.

At the same time that you’re learning how to hit this club straighter and straighter, you’ll also be getting more skilled at distance control by breaking up your bucket of balls and hitting 20, 40, 60, 80, 100, and 120 yard pitch shots with it.

And yes, it will require learning how to hit half swings and three quarter swings to adjust for different distances. But this is how you gain control and hit straight, by making less than full golf swings.

Short game is about finesse and control, not how far you can hit the ball so a full swing isn’t necessary with your pitching wedge. Become great at these controlled distance swings.

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Master Your Chipping to Break 100 Quickly

Step 3 is becoming great with your chipping wedge. Once you’ve smacked a few 7 irons to within 100 yards and followed that up with an 80 yard pitch shot, you’ll need to have a chip shot on hand to get the ball close to the hole.

Hopefully you were able to get on the green in 3 shots by hitting a controlled pitch shot, but for times when you miss the green with your pitching wedge, you’ll need to be prepared to get up and down with chipping.

The best way to improve your chipping is to practice again with just one wedge. Too many amateur golfers, try to use multiple wedges (54 degree, 56 degree, 60 degree).

See the theme here? Master your 7 iron, your pitching wedge, and your chipping wedge and you’ll be able to break 100 in golf pretty easily.

The Bump & Run Chip Shot

The first short game shot to get really good at is the bump & run chip shot. This is a chip shot you hit lower with more roll, less spin. The goal is to treat it like a putt where you get the ball on the green sooner so that it rolls the majority of the distance.

The reason the low runner chip shot is best for beginners trying to break 100, is that it’s easier to control. You’re less likely to hit it fat, shank it, blade it, etc. because you’re only hitting it a short distance and keeping the ball flight lower.

On flop shots, you have to make a harder, faster swing to hit the ball further and higher, which can lead to lots of error possibilities.

The best club to use for a low runner chip shot is a pitching wedge or another lower lofted club like a 9-iron.

Irons are easier clubs to hit chip shots with and less likely to dig “fat shots” compared to wedges due to the club face design. But they have low spin, and more roll so they’re not ideal in situations where there isn’t alot of green to work with for rolling chip shots to the hole.

In these cases you may need to flight the ball higher with a traditional wedge (56 or 60 degree loft).

Putting Tips to Break 100

Putting is one of the easiest ways to improve your golf score and quickly break 100.

The two areas you likely struggle with most are long putts outside of 40 feet and short putts inside of 10 feet, which both lead you to more 3 putts and 4 putts than you’d like to admit.

Imagine how many short putts you miss per round that you wish you would have made and know you should have made.

Subtract these strokes off your score and I bet you improve at least 5-10 strokes per round, which could be the difference to breaking 100 or even breaking 90 soon.

Circle Putting Drill:

The first drill you should practice is the circle putting drill. It involves setting up multiple tees around the hole in a circle and putting balls from each of them.

Measure out 3 feet to start and once you can go around the circle sinking all putts in a row, then move the tees back to 4 feet away from the hole and repeat.

Distance / Speed Control Putting Drill:

Your next best putting drill to practice is the long distance putting ladder. Set up putts from 20 feet, 30 feet, 40 feet, 50 feet, and 60 feet by marking them with tees or ball markers.

We call it a ladder because you’ll be hitting putts from different distances in a straight line, so each putt is it’s own rung on the ladder as you move higher and higher on the ladder (further and further) away from the hole.

Try to keep a similar tempo when putting from long distance but let the length of your backstroke determine how much power each putt is struck with.

Practice both of these drills by hitting 200 putts for each drill, 400 putts combined in one practice session. Repeat this practice session every day for 2 weeks and you’ll see much improvement.

Think that’s overkill? It’s no different than LeBron James or Michael Jordan shooting 1,000 jump shots in one practice session, every day, day in and day out. Aim for 400-500 putting reps per practice to improve your putting skills quickly and this will help you break 100 in golf.

Golf Putting Plan – Download your copy here.

Recap of the Best Golf Tips to Breaking 100

Tee Shots

Focus on hitting more fairways and less on how far you hit the golf ball. We’re not trying to reach the green in regulation on Par 4’s and Par 5’s. Instead, we need to reset your expectations and consider a bogey a par.

This means hitting 3 shots to get onto the green on Par 4 holes instead of reaching the green in 2 shots. Give yourself that extra stroke to remove pressure and lower your expectations of trying to make par every hole.

Find your longest, most accurate club to use for tee shots which likely will be your 7 iron or possibly a high lofted hybrid club.

Approach Shots

Don’t aim for the flag. Aim for the center of the green. Also beware of trouble around the greens like bunkers and water and aim your shots away from these hazards that will add penalty strokes to your score.

In addition, consider the position of the pin and where the best location to miss the green would be, giving you the best angle for your chip shot to hopefully get the ball close for a one putt save.

Pitch Shots

Master your pitching wedge club. Become skilled at hitting it different distances so that you can take pressure off your long game knowing that once you get inside 100 yards, you’re money.

Spend entire range buckets just working on your pitching skills and distance control as you’ll face a wide variety of distances out on the golf course.

Play the Bend

Most beginner golfers have either a slice or hook in their golf swing causing the golf ball to bend during its ball flight. This is why we recommended above using a higher lofted club to hit the ball straighter like a 7 iron instead of driver.

The 7 iron will have less bend and ball curve due to the higher loft, making it easier to hit straight and maximize distance. But for shots that you know are going to bend, compensate for it in your set-up.

Aim yourself left of the fairway if you know the ball will slice back right.

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