5 Golf Psychology Tips To Improve Your Mental Toughness
By Dwane Rodgers
Source : https://www.academia.edu/38659239/Golf_Psychology_Tips_To_Improve_Your_Mental_Toughness?email_work_card=abstract-read-more
Popular amateur Bobby Jones once said, “Golf is played mainly on five-and-a-half-inch course… the space between your ears.” Golf is no doubt, one of the most mentally challenging sports there is. One just can’t pick best golf iron and hit some best golf balls and have a hole in one. It’s an individual game and there’s no one that will help you on the downfalls when things start to go south. If your confidence goes south and becomes negative, bad thoughts start to dominate you and your scorecard will probably look like a premium-rate phone number. Almost every player on the top now hires a sports psychologist to help them get the right mindset before a game and give them tips to stay in their “happy place” for the time of their round.
Most of us normal people can’t afford luxury things like a dedicated golfing mind-doctor but there are some key mind pointers. You will find some of the best tips below and they might seem obvious but ask yourself whether you would enjoy these tips before and during a game and if not then you should.
Many golf players are already thinking of the end when they first step on the course. They think “If I can just start with three pars” and “And then I can afford a couple of bogeys on those difficult holes around the turn, and I might pick one up at the par-5 12th, as the wind should be behind us there.” If you think too ahead of you when playing golf then, how are you going to focus on what’s happening in the present like the shot you are facing at the moment? You can’t control what will happen in 10 mins or 30 mins, or even happened 30 secs ago. All you can do is focus on what’s happening and what shot, chip or putt you are going to make at that moment and do the best you can. If you are always focused on the present then, your scores will tumble.
Each time you go for the ball, your main goal is to get it into the hole from that position in as little shots as possible. Don’t think about what has happened before or the worst-case scenario, you should be only focusing on how to get the ball in the hole in the fastest way from where it lies. If you play a bad shot that puts you in a difficult position, you should try and think of it as a new challenge. Don’t just wallow in the mess; start from the beginning.
Remember, your goal is to get down in a few shots as possible from the current situation, whatever it may be. Be rational and logical, if the ball is in a bush then, the best way to limit the damage might be to take a penalty drop to go pretty back and into the point at where you have a full shot.
Most beginners’ golfers dwell on their bad shots. What is the point? Once it’s been hit, nothing can be done about it. The only thing in your control is what will happen next. A great way to let out the stress and forget about the mistakes is the “10-yard rule”. It’s a psychological strategy made by a famous golfer Tiger Woods when he was in his prime, amongst others. After a bad shot, you can vent your frustration inside your head until you have reached a point 10 yards from where you struck it with your best golf irons. After crossing the imaginary line, that shot is history, it should be forgotten and your mind should be focusing on the next stroke.
New golfers can sometimes be guilty of giving up on a round too fast. You should remember that you have a handicap to help you and your fortunes on the course can turn around with one good swing, or one decent break. The beginners who get the most out of their games will almost never post a “No-return” and will give it their best until the last putt has dropped. If you get to a point when you realize that there is absolutely no way of beating your best score, then change your target, it might nr to beat your handicap. If things get slippery, then you might still play to play to your handicap, you might break 90 or, even play the next shot as well as you can.
If you are having a bad day where the ball just doesn’t go in the hole, don’t cry over your bad luck on the course. Concentrate on the positive things. If you pick a line and start the ball on that line, you have put well; you just haven’t read the green quite right. Next time, you will get the line right and the putt will drop.
At the end it’s all about being positive and being optimistic. Golf is indeed a game of mental toughness and positive approach. Play it with such spirit and it you would love it for life.