Friday, January 20, 2012

How to Handle Stressful Moments in Golf?

Stressful moments on the golf course are to be expected -- particularly if a prize or bragging rights are on at stake. Sometimes you need to slow everything down and calm yourself in the face of such pressure. Through a specific pre-course routine to breathing and focusing exercises, you can take control of the moment before it takes control of you. On the links, don't worry about those around you when you're ready for your shot. Just implement your routine. With a little luck, it can become your trademark, as well.
Pre-Shot Routine
Step 1
Move at a slower pace in the quarter hour that precedes your round or practice session. Execute every action possible at what feels like three-quarter speed. Breathe evenly from one breath to another, even though you aren't on the course or practice range yet.
Step 2
Stand behind the ball for each shot after you've selected the proper club and choose the target at which you will aim. Breathe evenly, allowing tension to flow out of your arms and shoulders with each exhalation.
Step 3
Remain in place behind your golf ball, looking at the target until you have eliminated all other thoughts from your mind. This might take a little longer at first. Visualize what the shot will look like. Take one final calming breath. Move to the ball only after you have completed your exhalation.
Step 4
Walk toward the ball at three-quarter normal speed. Maintain singular focus on the target. If any thoughts related to yardage, swing mechanics or the possibility of a bad shot come into your mind, back off the shot and begin again.
Step 5
Focus on keeping your movement at three-quarter speed immediately after your shot. Resist the temptation to move more quickly that can come from the thrill of making a great shot or frustration of taking a bad shot. Use the time between shots and holes to grow accustomed to the slower pace.

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