Golf is a game of decisions. As an amateur, professional or somewhere in between, each players is confronted with choices that cause anxiety. The anxiety is not rooted in failure, but in the multitude of choices ones faces for every shot. Yes, there are players that grab the same club for most shots because they have confident that they can hit it well regardless of the lie, distance, or position in the general playing area. That approach is a choice as well and as we all know is wrought with pitfalls. In other cases golfers over think their shot and that leads to ‘analysis paralysis’. Regardless of the category you fall under, indecision becomes the root of most miss shots or is it?Continue reading
Through the course of 6000+ golf shots I take each year, I can honestly say that I might be confused on how to play a golf shot a couple of times. I believe I can assess how to play 99.5% within seconds of arriving at my ball. The other 0.5% of the time I will have to think about my best options. But, every so often (actually rarely) I am confused or dumbfounded on how to play a shot. I know this sounds crazy, but it happens!Continue reading
We have all played a round of golf where we shot ourselves into a situation that requires a needed shot. You know what I mean when I suggest that the pressure mounts after hitting a poor shot and a solid shot is required to recover from your poor performance. Or you are in a scramble and all of your team mates are out of play and they all look to you to save the hole. There are many situations where hitting a needed shot is critical to keep a good round going. I think I have the solution or at least on that works for me!<!–more–)
The pressure shot I am suggesting does not have to be anything special. Sometimes we need to hit a great wedge from the middle of the fairway to set up par. Sometimes we have to manufacture something, but those shots are in a different category. I think the most common example would be putting a 3 footer for par on any hole. Making that putt more often than not is hitting a shot when needed to keep your score low. Lets go back to 150 yards and work on my solution from that distance.
The picture should give you part of my answer to success under pressure and producing that needed shot on demand.
Regardless of what situation we found ourselves in on the golf course, committing to whatever shot you selected is critical to lower golf shores. It is important to quiet the white noise and focus on success. Banishing the negative thoughts and self-doubt is all part of committing to your shot. When you take that positive step towards relieving the mounting pressure, the second part of my process kicks in.
Follow your routine as if there was no pressure on the shot. Yup, it is that simple. Follow the same pre-shot routine, shot execution and finishing your shot as per normal. Do not try to do anything different because when you do the results are not what you had intended. Play your normal game after committing to the shot. Focus on the results you want versus what you don’t want. This mental focus will allow you to hit any shot on demand during all situations.
Committing to your shot and following your routine are the two steps I use when hitting that pressure shot when needed. It might seem too simple, but I have notice over the years that most amateurs change their shot making routine because they believe they need to do something special. I would suggest that keeping things as simple as possible and relying on your skill (whatever level) to make the shot is the best path to success. Why change things and bring in an additional element of risk during a pressure shot.
So, the next time you need a specific shot; step back and take your time. Commit to your shot and execute it as per your normal game. You will find that you are far more successful and the results will be satisfying.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!