His methods have captured the attention of golf fans for years, and in this article, we get a rare insight into Bryson DeChambeau's warm-up routine
Bryson DeChambeau is well-known for thinking outside the box and bringing a unique take to the tried and tested methods we regularly see in professional golf. In this interview, Garrett Johnston asks the man himself about his practice routines.
From driving to putting, Bryson DeChambeau talks through the meticulous preparation that helps him play his best. We shouldn’t be surprised that his pre-round prep is different than most Tour pros.
What’s the focus of your pre-round warm-up?
It definitely depends on the week. Last week [Northern Trust] I putted not so great and I was just trying to work on this week how to improve that, how to make some changes. Obviously we’re using some devices out here to try to figure that out.
If I’m not driving it well, I’ll be working harder on that. It really depends on the week and I’m pivoting each and every week depending on what my strokes gained is in all the categories.
So this week [BMW Championship] it’s going to be a little more around the greens and putting that I need to work on to be up there winning a tournament. I ball-struck it well enough and I drove it well enough to win last week. (He finished 12 shots behind Tony Finau at the Northern Trust.)
So how long will your warm-up last?
Well it depends, if I’m feeling super comfortable and confident it might be short and sweet. If I’m not comfortable it could be a couple hours trying to figure it out – it’s a work day. So I’m just as focused on these days as I am on the tournament days.
In terms of putting, how do you want to feel heading to the course?
For me, I want to feel like the stroke is smooth, consistent, and controlled. I want to have great speed on the greens, obviously you’ll see me working on my speed every single day, controlling that.
Then also, I want to start it on my line. If I can start it on my line, with great speed, and I feel comfortable with the stroke, I’m usually a top-30 putter in the world.
What’s your most common training aid pre-round?
I would definitely say measuring launch angle and what-not. We don’t use this pre-round, this is for obviously practice days, but the most important numbers to have are the ball speed numbers off of a device that tell me how fast the putt is going, or how fast I’m hitting the putt, which then we measure out how far it goes.
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Let’s say it’s 40 feet, our number is 10.1 miles per hour that we want to achieve. We can then see if it’s short or long of that number, and then we adjust our percentages based off of whether it’s slower or faster that day.
So knowing the speed of the greens is super important and we use how fast I’m hitting it as a gauge.
On the range itself, what’s the go-to device for you?
FlightScope [Launch Monitor] is definitely helpful for measuring swing speed and ball speed and seeing how far the golf ball is going.
Whether on the range or during a practice round, Bryson can often be seen utilising his launch monitor
Every golf course and every environment is different so we’re definitely checking out how far golf balls go in this environment compared to the previous week’s environment. And knowing those numbers is very, very helpful.
Mentally, how do you want to feel when you’re done with your warm-up?
The mental game is all based on if I’m confident with the golf swing, if I’m confident with my putting, if I’m confident with my chipping, based on all of the stuff we do, then my mental game’s in a great state, we’ve got no issue. I’ve always said the mental game changes the way you play about ten per cent up or down.
Your skillset is your skillset. So, if you’re an 80s shooter you could shoot 75 that day, or 72 if you’re playing unbelievable golf and in the perfect state and you’ve got everything going for you. Or you could go the other way and shoot 85.
So I would say the mental game is a ten per cent buffer, and it depends for a lot of other people but for me it’s always been around ten per cent.
If I can keep it in check and I’m positive about my game and comfortable with my stroke, ball-striking, and everything I could take a round of 72 and turn it into 65 pretty easily.
What’s typically going to make you comfortable with your chipping and bunker play?
The grass and the bunker types. I’m really good out of ryegrass and bunkers that are a little firmer. If bunkers are like that, I’m usually pretty good around the greens. If they’re not I’ve got to work a little harder to get comfortable around the greens and that’s just practise and technique and a lot of that.
How does the amazing Augusta National practice facility match up for your game?
I think it’s a really cool way to prepare for the golf course. I still have my process that I go through. It’s very nice, it’s got everything we need.
Most Tour events we have everything we need but I’ll say Augusta is primetime tip-top shape as always and it’s fun to be able to have a golf course and a couple holes that look similar to the golf course.
It gets you kind of comfortable if you’re trying to work on a shot shape on a hole or something, you can do it out there which is pretty special.
If you’re trying to hit a shot and be comfortable with a shot on the course, it [Augusta’s range] definitely can help with your confidence on the golf course.
To listen to the full Beyond the Clubhouse podcast episode with Bryson DeChambeau and host Garrett Johnston during the PGA Tour’s BMW Championship, click the link above!