Golf Stats: How PGA Tour pros perform on approach shots and why that matters to you

By Jon Levy

Are you a stats junkie?

In other words, are you that person who can, at will, recite the batting averages for the entire 2009 New York Yankees World Series team and up-to-the-minute stats in virtually any sport? In golf, do you know every score you’ve shot for the past ten years and track fairways hit, GIR, putts and countless other performance stats with your own game?

Our new series, Golf Stats, takes a look at every stat imaginable in the game of golf. So if that’s the case, listen up.

If you don’t share our unrelenting penchant for numbers nerdiness, well, you may be surprised how more clarity on the game can help your own. Because it’s no secret GolfTEC is a big proponent of knowing the facts when it comes to golf improvement, and this goes far beyond initiatives like the GolfTEC SwingTRU Motion Study. So, take heed as we roll out a variety of golf stats that put you in the know.

As explained this week in the infographics below: How PGA Tour players fare on approach shots from 100-125, 150-175 and 200-plus yards.

Golf Stats tour player approach shot GIR

Golf Stats tour player approach shot proximity

PGA Tour player approach shots: 100-125 yards

  • GIR: 74.59%
  • Proximity from the fairway: 20’0″
  • Proximity from the rough: 30’3″

PGA Tour player approach shots: 150-175 yards

  • GIR: 63.95%
  • Proximity from the fairway: 27’6″
  • Proximity from the rough: 41’5″

PGA Tour player approach shots: Over 200 yards

  • GIR: 46.06%
  • Proximity from the fairway: 50’3″
  • Proximity from the rough: 72’9″

Why these stats matter to YOU

Golf Stats course managementA common cause of the low-handicapper’s inability to break par consistently is due to poor course management. The same goes for higher handicaps, who struggle to break 90 and 100 consistently. They often don’t strategically choose the right shots to play, play to their strengths, or even know what the right shots or their strengths are.

This is precisely why a better understanding of golf stats can help. Knowing data points like how the world’s best only hit the green with less than half of their shots from over 200 yards — and still just 75 percent of greens with wedges — should tell you even they are far from perfect. It should also say to replace that 4-iron you’ve pulled from deep rough in an attempt to “go for it” with a club you know keeps it in play.

Not just course management, but practice management

Course management is one thing, but knowing Tour pro stats can also help you fine-tune which parts of your game need the most work.

This means that if you do notice a part of your game is close to a specific Tour player stat, or one that conversely falls far below in relation to everything else, you can more easily pinpoint the areas needing the most attention (i.e. a weakness in long putts vs. short putts, tee shots vs. approach shots, etc.). This will help maximize your effectiveness during practice.

By the way, this is a good time to say if you’re not one who tracks their stats on the golf course, you should start. Now.

Tracking simple stats like greens in regulation, fairways hit from the tee, a breakdown of putting performance like total putts, three-putts and length of putts made/missed, up-and-down conversions, etc., may not provide the fully detailed view of your game like the PGA Tour does for its players, but anytime you can create a better overall picture of your game it’s a step in the right direction.

How to track your own stats

New golf tracking software products and apps hit the market seemingly everyday. So there are plenty of great options available to track your own golf stats. If you prefer keep things a bit more old school, however, even just a simple addition to your scorecard can do the trick.

Golf Stats track your own scorecard
Example of a golfer (who won’t be named, but may work in GolfTEC Marketing and proudly claims himself as a two-time GolfTEC HQ Match Play champion) tracking stats during a casual round

The bottom line

Become a stats junkie with your golf game and your scores will thank you for it. Stay tuned as our Golf Stats series continues …

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