Grace Connelly is a keen golfer who is finishing her final year at Cowbridge Comprehensive School in south Wales.
Grace, 18, started playing at the age of three and her current handicap is 2.6. She is looking forward to going to university in America on a golf scholarship.
I have a personal training session with my strength and conditioning coach, who I’ve had for seven years now. We work on strength and power. I get to 60kg in my power cleans, 50kg two reps for bench press, 55kg two reps for prone pull and 55kg five reps split squat. Weight training has given me a massive advantage in golf as my average distance and club speed is around the ladies tour average. When I get home I do 20 minutes of putting in my house to maintain my technique. I also have a 50 minute session with my psychologist. Psychology is the biggest thing in sport and having a psychologist helps me process things better on the course and overall perform better.
I do another weight session in the school gym. I do strength for my legs, so squat and step up and then power-based drills which are related to the movement of a golf swing. I then go up to Southerndown Golf Club, which is my home club in Wales. I warm up on the range, do some putting activation drills to get my stroke going and then do about half an hour practise on the short game. I then play 18 holes. It is important for me to play two-three times a week on the course to get used to scoring and reacting to different situations and different conditions each time.
I practise at The Vale Resort, performing various drills and games. I keep my practice varied so I don’t get bored and to make sure I’m covering all areas. I then go out onto the course to practise shots between 30-100 yards. Afterwards I do a circuit session with weight training and cardio training. The gym is key for sport but I also do it because I like to keep fit and look after myself.
I have a lesson with my coach in which I work on my driver. Three key points I need to work on are pushing my hips towards the target, making sure my hands go back on the right plane and getting my arms through. During our session we use Trackman, which picks up notation analysis on my swing, for example swing speed, swing direction, club face, carry distance etc. After my lesson I do another weight training session which mainly focuses on power including jump squats, lateral jumps and single arm presses.
I play nine holes at The Vale and practise certain shots and play certain games to practise putting myself under pressure. I focus on bunker play and flop shots. I also do pace putting and holing out drills which is more beneficial out on the course because every green has different flag positions and different slopes so every putt is different. In the afternoon I do another circuits class, which is extremely hard but it’s the best way to push yourself to your limits.
I have a team league match for Southerndown. There are five players in our team and we play against another club. We were Welsh team champions last year so are hoping to do the same again. Before the round I do an hour of practice which consists of pace putting, short game practice such as chip and runs then 25 minutes on the range before I go out. We win the match.
My day off. But I do some putting in the house as it only takes 15-20 minutes. I use it as a day to relax but still go to the gym. Another weight session with cleans up to one rep max, spilt squats and shoulder presses.