Chances are, everyone reading this has had one of those near-breakout moments on the golf course. You know, where you say a few curse words, talk negatively about yourself, and maybe even throw or hit your club out of frustration.
While we all know this is a bad impression, it will certainly happen if we don’t live up to our own expectations.
But as Chubbs Peterson once reminded Happy Gilmore, “Remember, this isn’t hockey. You don’t play with raw emotion.”
While the advice may come from a fictional character, it’s still the truth: Golfers who let their emotions get the better of them are bound to fail.
So how can you calm yourself down when you’re not playing your best? By stopping, breathing and resetting your mindset.
Thanks to GOLF Teacher to Watch Dr. Alison Curdt, here are some tips on how to do that effectively and do your best. So take these with you to the course and use them as an advantage over everyone you play with.
How to Maintain a Strong Mental Golf Game
“The game of golf requires a different level of intensity than other sports, which often require athletes to run fast, hit hard, jump high or react to moving objects,” says Curdt.
“But because golf is constantly starting and stopping, you need the ability to get excited about planning a shot, and then calm your body and mind to actually hit the shot — which isn’t always easy for golfers to do. to do.”
Because golf is such a mental sport, it is an area where you can differentiate yourself from other players.
If you can control emotions and stay positive, you will likely succeed; if you think negatively and let one bad shot turn into three bad decisions, you will always fail.
But Curdt says that while focus is important, too much intensity can be counterproductive.
“Golfers who try to get intense and focus too much on the golf course actually increase the tension in their body,” she says. “Intensity is the ability to narrow focus, eliminate external and internal distractions, regulate emotions, and maintain a sense of self-discipline to continue routines in the game.
“So don’t let this intensity increase the tension in your body by trying too hard.”
But how can you maintain your composure and eliminate both tension and stress if you’re not playing at your best? Curdt says it’s all about chilling out, calming your mind and using your breathing to slow things down for yourself.
“Irregular shots, poor contact and increased frustration are often the result of tension,” she adds. “By using deep breathing exercises, this eliminates that tension.”
Curdt suggests the following exercise for this purpose.
“Practice by placing a hand on your stomach and, as you breathe deeply, feel your stomach expand like a balloon. As you exhale, feel your stomach emptying,” she says.
“This deep oxygen circulation helps relax the muscles in your body, reducing tension and allowing you to move freely. By taking the ‘tension’ out of your ‘intensity’, you can relax and watch your performance increase!”
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