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Teaching Philosophy

  As a student of the game as well a tournament player for almost 10 years one comes to realize the different and unusual golf swings that the PGA tour has created. We can begin with Arnold Palmer, Lee Trevino, Paul Azinger and then that sweet swing of Payne Stewart. The common thread, to all these hall of fame players, is that they allowed their body to go where it needed to go, without resistance. One would think Palmer was always angry when he played. Trevino considered one of the best ball strikers who ever played, squared the clubface better than most, Paul Azinger with that grip the grip they considered to strong and Payne Stewart, you almost expected to hear music when he was swinging with that perfect tempo. All Champions so which one is right, as I stated earlier they were all right. They set out to play the game the way their body allowed them to. Nothing more nothing less.

  With all of that said our philosophy is based on what the player wants, expects and works for.  The 10 minute conversation with the player will determine which path we take. 

Great Article Just needed to share this.... How many of these mistakes derail your progress on the course? Not sure who the author is but GREAT READ for anyone who wishes to get better.

5 Mental Mistakes You Should Never Make On The Golf Course           

As you’ll know by now if you’ve followed by blog for any length of time, I strongly believe that golf is one of the most mental sports. And for that reason, the average player loses way too many shots to poor mental decisions and not knowing how to systematically approach each shot and control their emotions to maintain confidence. This article will show you the 5 most common mental game mistakes that most golfers make and how to eliminate them.

1. Don’t analyze your swing or think about it while swinging

Any thoughts about your swing on the golf course is counter-productive to a good score, whether it be in between shots or during your swing. Trusting what you have is far more important than trying to correct something or forcing a movement while swinging.

Trying to consciously control your body during any action makes the task more difficult. Think about if you drove your car while consciously thinking about what your body is doing (“foot on brake, now accelerator…”) and you’d probably get into a crash! Instead you simply trust your ability as a driver. Thinking about your swing while swinging creates tension which interferes with the free-flow of a good swing. It’s fine to think about it on the driving range when you’re practicing a new movement you’ve learnt in your golf lessons, but on the course your mind has to be quiet to play your best.

Swing thoughts usually creep in during a round when a few wayward shots are hit, and subsequently the golfer analyses the swing and attempts to correct the problem. A lot of these off line shots are simply caused by tension, which increases with the more control over the swing the golfer attempts to have. There’s a saying that In golf, “You need to give up control to gain control” and I strongly believe that to be true.

Instead of being focused on the body’s movements, we need to be connected with the objective – to hit the ball to a specific target with a pre-determined shot shape, and then trust the body to do what we’ve practiced. The best swing thought is to trust the swing you have, but if you need some help, you can try saying the words “one-two-three” – “one” for the back-swing, “two” for the down-swing and “three” for the follow-through. This should help eliminate the swing thoughts.

2. Don’t think about score (unless you really have to)

Unless you’re in a situation where you need to know your score for strategy, like during the closing holes of a tournament, it’s best to forget about it.

Some of the best rounds in history have been shot while the player didn’t know what his/her score was. You’ll find that when you play your best, it’s like you don’t care about your overall performance and you don’t judge it, you’re just enjoying playing the game and hitting good golf shots. This is the mentality we need during every round.

Score is something that is external and out of your control. Tying your performance to it can create a roller-coaster of emotions. If score is your absolute goal of the game, how are you going to feel when you score an 8 on one hole? Will it dent your ego and ruin your round? If you can shift your goal from each round from score to executing a good process and just enjoying the game no matter what, you will score better. Your focus has to shifted from outcome to process to play your best.

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3. Don’t beat yourself up, be your own caddy and remember it’s just a game

How you talk to yourself on the golf course can make a big difference in how you perform. Caddies are generally selected, not only because they can calculate yardages and read greens, but more so because they know what to say to a player and when to say it. You can bet your life if Adam Scott hit the ball O.B. and Steve Williams was to say “What the @#$% was that? How can you hit a shot like that you loser!”, he would be fired on the spot. Saying such things, doesn’t help a player, it would lower their confidence and make them more tense before the next shot. Instead the caddie would offer some encouraging words to help the player forget about it and move on.

Most of us don’t have the luxury of a caddie, so we have to create our own “inner caddy”, so we boost our confidence and bounce back quickly from shots we’re not happy with. To do this, start to develop a list of phrases that you can say before and after a shot. Unless you’re playing golf for your livelihood, it really shouldn’t make you upset. After all it’s a game that allows you to practice real life challenges, like facing adversity, focusing, having a positive attitude, staying in the present and so much more. Think about this next time you hit the ball in the trees.

4. Don’t just aim at the fairway or green – have a very precise target in mind

As a continuation of #3, caddies will always help their player pick a very precise target instead of telling them to aim down the fairway or at the green. But most amateurs do exactly that and it costs them several shots per round. Ask any of the top players and they’ll tell you that they make their target as small as possible. In the photo above, Phil Mickelson’s target might be that thin silver tree branch behind the green. It definitely won’t be the whole green or even one half of it.

Next time you’re out there, make this a part of your pre-shot routine and you will notice the difference.

5. Don’t forget about your routine

The shot routine (which includes the pre-shot and post shot routine), is an absolute must if you want to play your best golf. It’s the most effective way to ensure that you choose and commit to the right shot and then have the optimal reaction whatever the outcome. If you don’t have a very meticulous routine (which eventually becomes a habit) you are simply throwing away shots. And it can all be done easily in the one minute allowed. This one ties in nicely with Mistake #2. Instead of making score your goal, make your routine your goal for very round and focusing on everything that’s great about the experience in between. If you need help with a good routine, you’ll find out exactly how to do it in the Golf State of Mind Training Program.


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