Golf is a mental game. Short and long term strategies are paramount. And since the game can take 4 hours or more to play, it commands a certain level of patience and focus that aren’t necessary with other sports.
Where golf is concerned, technique plays a significant role, and there are so many other factors that go into playing well. Here are a couple different techniques that can quickly improve your game.
Also known as imagery, this is a mental technique to help you program, or reprogram yourself to create a certain experience consistently. This is also known as “visual motor behavior rehearsal.” Studies have shown this tactic to be helpful when practicing new skills, as well as refining existing ones. It is said to lower anxiety, increase self-confidence, and improve your warm-up game. Before implementing this technique, make sure you hone good, correct habits, as it can hurt your game if not.
Ways to practice this technique are:
- Thinking in pictures instead of words
- Maintain a focused and relaxed demeanor
- Make sure you are somewhere calm, with limited distraction
- Picture yourself making certain shots, or swinging the Club the correct way
Setting your expectations appropriately is a big part of success in golf. Don’t’ try to compete with others. Only compete with yourself.
In order to do this, you’ll want to determine a few things:
- Which clubs you are most comfortable with
- How far you hit with each club you use
- Your average ball flight
- How you react when making errors – try to keep a positive attitude and keep your ego in check. Stress and tension will kill your game.
- The direction of your natural shot (i.e. right to left) and establishing your go-to shot
Hopefully combining these two techniques will help your mental game, which is more than half the battle!