tHE MENTAL gAME OF gOLF

If you are really serious about improving your game and committed to being the best golfer possible you will put out the effort necessary to achieve your goal.

Perhaps you have had good even great games in the past, you might have even experienced a game where you could do no wrong, everything was going your way, you were perfect or maybe very close to being perfect. You were in the zone, nothing could stop you. But ever since that high point it was difficult to repeat your performance consistently.
Many golfers undermine their own success, by becoming too uptight, nervous, and distracted, or by that old negative self-talk such as “I will never be able to sink this putt”.   It is said that golf is a game that is played with the body but won in the mind. Would it surprise you if I said that Golf is more of a mental than a physical game.  Here is what some golfers have said about the game:

Jack Nickalaus – “Golf is 80% mental, 10% ablility, 10% luck.”

Jim Flick – “90% of golf is mental, and the other 10 % is mental too.”                                               

Chi Chi Rodriguez – “Golf is 95% mental and 35% psychological”.

Say WHAT?? Oh well.. I guess Chi Chi spent more time on the course than in math class!!

And although he was referring to baseball the immortal

Yogi Berra said - "Ninety percent of the game is half mental."

Say WHAT AGAIN?? Oh well.. I guess Yogi had Chi Chi's math teacher.

Most Golf Clubs don’t teach the mental part of the game, they just teach the physical.  Did you know that almost every top professional golfer on the tour uses the services of a sports psychologist and or hypnotist.
  And yet most golfers view the mental game as the last resort.
  Yet it has been proven that concentrating on the mental side of the game can help golfers by improving their focus, concentration, consistency, and by removing distractions and negative self-talk.

There are three main reasons why golf is so mentally demanding.

  1. Golf is an un-timed game, sometimes players get impatient with slower players ahead of them.  The late great Payne Stewart said: “A bad attitude is worse than a bad swing!”
  2.  You must take full responsibility for your own actions on the course.  Many players try to blame the weather, the course, their clubs or balls, other players, anything but themselves for playing badly.
  3. Golf is a game where you spend more time thinking of playing rather than playing. During these lapses in the actual playing of the game you can lose your concentration, start thinking about the mistakes you made, worrying about your next putt etc. etc. Dr. Steve Hendlin says that “Golf’s slow pace means there is a tremendous amount of time between shots in which to scare yourself”.

Many professional athletes use hypnosis and visualization to improve their games.
  And at age 13, Tiger Woods began mental training with Dr. Jay Brunza, a family friend and psychologist... Among the techniques Brunza used were subliminal tapes and hypnosis. The first time Jay hypnotized Tiger, he had him stick his arm straight out and told him that it couldn't be moved, Tiger's father, Earl tried but couldn’t pull Tiger’s arm down. Dr. Brunza hypnotizes Tiger to block out all distractions and focus completely on the golf course.  Tiger says hypnosis is 'inherent in what I do now.'"
Woods adds this perspective: "I always have an inner peace on the golf course. I've learned to trust the subconscious, and my instincts have never lied to me.''


Jack Nicklaus has been quoted as saying his mind is his strongest weapon in making him a champion.

Chuck Hogan, a PGA Professional, changed his golf schools to concentrate more on mental training and hypnosis than on swing training. He is a coach to over 60 PGA, LPGA and Senior Tour players.

Many other sports are using hypnosis techniques to elicit better physical success.

Bob Reese, the head trainer and hypnotherapist of the New York Jets uses relaxation and visualization techniques to reprogram his players' subconscious minds.

Jimmy Connors used hypnosis to win the U.S. Open Championship.

Mark McGuire has used a sports psychologist/hypnotist since 1991.

Michael Jordan has stated that he has shot many more baskets in his mind than he ever did on the court.

All of these top athletes perform visualization, or mental rehearsal.  Mentally rehearsing your swing is very important, because as you imagine swinging your club, the neurons in your brain fire in the exact same pattern as they would if you were physically swinging your club. This improves your neuromuscular coordination immensely.  By imagining, pretending or just thinking about swinging your club in the perfect drive or the perfect putt, you are conditioning your brain for success.  If you can think it, see it, feel it, hear it, and say it – you can do it.  It is important than when you do your mental rehearsal you get all of your senses into play.  You feel the club in your hands, feel the sun shining on you, hear the birds chirping, the breeze blowing, see the green grass, the white of the ball, the blue of the sky, smell the fresh cut grass, as you address the ball for your perfect drive.

Athletes have been using hypnosis for over 30 years, and YOU can also use hypnosis to help you play a better game of golf.