Email Pete Understand, playing golf with consistency requires a certain level of physical ability. The best golf swing is one which repeats and stays within certain margins. That's why we take lessons (to swing within the margins) and practice (to groove a repeating swing). Even with that, our swings change and evolve over time. You don't have to consciously try to change...it's going to happen. It sounds almost futile...once I get a good swing...it's going to change? Yep! Hopefully not much and with good instruction and practice you should stay within the margins, continue to play well and even get better.

One area every player should work on is their mental approach. This weekend, Trevor Immelman, won the Masters. On Saturday night he received a voicemail from 3 time Masters winner, Gary Player, both are from South Africa. The message content was impressive: (I paraphrase)

  • You have the ability to win
  • I believe in you
  • You will face adversity in the final round
  • Believe in yourself
  • and keep your head steady for an extra second when you putt.

What a great call! We should all believe in our ability to perform well on any given shot. Why not, we have all hit really nice shots in the past. We should talk about our game in positive terms.

Examples:

You could say, I stunk! 109 at an easy course and I couldn't hit the ball all day. Or, I shot 109 with 2 beautiful tee shots and a more consistent pre-shot routine. I even improved my putting from 40 last round to 39 this time! I will get better and beat my friends!

You could say, My drives were terrible! I made double bogey on 18 to shoot 90 because I can't hit a driver to save my life. On 18 I hit it off the planet out-of-bounds. Or, I almost broke 90 for the first time. It was great! Without hitting my best drives, I even hit one OB on 18, I was able to score well because of good course management and a hot putter. I am going to score in the 80's soon, maybe even mid-80's!

Trust me when I tell you, the way you think and speak about your game will effect your scores. Make thinking and speaking positively about your game a goal, stick to it, and you will play better golf.

And keep your head steady for an extra second when you putt...that helps too!

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