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How to Organize Your Golf Bag Like the Pros

Golf clubs and glove in an organized golf bag.

Blog written by Perfect Practice.

A messy golf bag can be detrimental to your golf game.

No, really. It may seem like an overstatement. However, playing golf at a high-level requires just as much mental concentration as physical effort. And when you're rummaging through your golf bag looking for a tee or ball at every hole, the inevitable frustration will reduce your ability to concentrate. Even if you're not that bothered by it, you can slow down the pace of play and may find yourself the subject of snide remarks from competitors or others on the course.

Additional reasons why you should keep your golf bag organized:

  • Clubs can be damaged when improperly stored.
  • It's easier to tell when you have lost a club or accessory when everything is organized.
  • Carrying an overstuffed and disorganized bag will frustrate you and hurt your golf game, as well as increase your risk of injury.
  • Even a relatively minor stressor like a messy bag can make us less confident on the course.

Staying organized is one of the reasons why professional golfers use caddies. Caddies help pros stay organized, so the game is all they need to focus on. Some courses offer caddie services for around $40-$50 per bag, though significant tips are also expected. Of course, pro caddies make far more.

But for every pro or well-heeled enthusiast, there are thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, of amateurs who can't afford to hire a caddie every time they go hit the links. And not everyone wants to add the cost of a golf cart to their bill for the day. So, for the serious, yet budget-conscious, golf amateur who's carrying their own bag, knowing how to keep organized and staying that way is a must. Continue reading as we discuss how to keep your golf bag organized.

What You’ll Need to Keep Your Golf Bag Organized

The first thing you need to keep yourself organized on the course is a high-quality golf bag. Here’s what to look for when evaluating different bags:

  • Interior space and dividers
  • Additional pockets
  • A reliable strap and stand
  • Material composition
  • Weight
  • Appearance

While your eyes may dart to the most attractive golf bag you see online or in a shop, looks are one of the last things that you’ll want to consider. Your golf bag is the centerpiece of your on-course organization, so you'll need to evaluate whether it can accommodate and protect your equipment appropriately first.

You'll want a golf bag with enough space and dividers to keep your golf clubs separate. Of course, high-quality golf clubs can be pricey, and they'll jostle around quite a bit in your bag. As they do, they'll damage your clubs over time. So you'll want to have a bag with enough space and dividers to minimize your clubs' movement. (Also, consider grabbing some club head covers for extra protection.)

Not only should your bag have enough space for your clubs, but you'll want one that has enough pockets for the following course necessities:

 Water bottle(s)

Markers
Tees Towels
Balls Scorecard
Rangefinder Cash
Sunscreen  Gloves
Umbrella/rain gear Snacks
  

You'll also want a golf bag with a sturdy stand so that you can comfortably access your clubs and other items. Your bag should be of durable and firm enough material to protect your gear in case of rain or other inclement weather, but also lightweight enough to carry it comfortably. Find one with extra padding and support to help mitigate the risk of injury and muscle fatigue. The strap should be durable as well, so you don't suddenly find yourself lugging your bag across the course with both arms.

Once you've selected a few bags that meet these minimum standards, you can settle on the most attractive of the bunch.

Organizing Your Golf Bag

Your golf bag is fundamentally designed to hold your golf clubs (not the latest issue of Golf Digest, along with everything you bought at the gift shop). While you'll also use it to carry your balls, accessories, and gear, keeping your golf bag organized starts with your clubs.

How to Organize Your Golf Clubs In Your Bag

When you have your bag and equipment in front of you, you want to start with the proper arrangement of your clubs. But before you get started by placing your clubs into your empty bag, it's good practice to clean them first. Clean clubs are not just more aesthetically pleasing. When your clubs have a build-up of dirt and grime, your performance will suffer. And the longer you go without cleaning them, the more difficult they will be to clean. Make it a practice to clean them once every few rounds and before you store your clubs away in your bag.

Start with placing the driver in the upper left-hand corner closest to the shoulder strap, followed by your fairway woods in the upper-right hand corner. The irons should be in the middle. Your putter and wedges should be at the bottom. Placing them in this fashion gives the woods' shafts, grips, and heads more protection from the iron shafts as all clubs move about. And that protection means you won't need to replace them as frequently, leaving you more money to spend on greens fees.

You'll also want to keep your club heads facing the ground, with the grips apart from each other. This will prevent the heads from colliding, the grips from rubbing against each other, and any other motion that will cause undue wear and tear on your clubs. In fact, improper storage wears out grips faster than use, so make sure to store your clubs head side down after each hole.

When you're finished, make sure to return all of your items to their proper locations. It's not the end of the world if you were in a hurry and slipped a ball into your pocket with your valuables. However, by ensuring that everything is in its proper place after the 18th hole, you can avoid the dread that comes with knowing you have to clean out a cluttered golf bag the night before your next round. This also helps prolong the life of your clubs.

Keeping Your Gear and Accessories Organized

Assortment of golf gear and accessories

Any serious golf bag will also contain at least one pocket for clothes. Don't keep anything in that section except apparel. It's easy to throw a snack in there in a rush. But if you suddenly find yourself on a golf hiatus afterwards, you won't be pleased when you open that apparel pocket a month or two down the road. Folding your apparel also does wonders, as when you stuff clothes into that pocket, it can be a bit tougher to pull out and distend the pocket over time. It will also free up more space to hold more clothes.

You'll also need pockets for various golf items and accessories. At a minimum, you'll want enough pockets for golf balls, tees, gloves, markers/pens, and valuables. Depending on what exactly you decide to carry, place your items one per pocket if you can. If you need to place multiple items in a pocket, group them by category. For example, place all of your valuables, such as your wallet, phone, and keys in the same pocket.

Keep in mind that stuffing every item in any pocket will make it harder to find things when you need them. Match the item's size to the pocket's size. You also don't want to overload your bag. Too many accessories and your bag could become a source of muscle fatigue and cramps that will seriously impair your golf game. And over time, a heavy bag could lead to chronic back pain or injuries that could keep you off the course for an extended period of time. So take only what you need to play well, but don't overload yourself.

Staying Organized on the Golf Course

Staying organized on the course starts with your golf bag and how well you arrange it. The proper setup can do wonders for your confidence on the course as well as your enjoyment of the sport. Don't stress yourself out desperately looking for tees or golf balls. Use these best practices to improve your ability to focus and stay organized throughout each round. You’ll be surprised by how much better you can perform and feel. Check out our wide range of golf gear and accessories today!