Golf Magazine

What Type of #Golf Do YOU Play When Score Matters?

By Golfforbeginners
How do you think you would play golf if your PGA Tour card was on the line? Would you calmly navigate the golf course or would your grip tighten on every club and suddenly come down with a case of "the yips"?
Some familiar names on the Web.com Tour, like Sam Saunders and Peter Uihlein, rose to the occasion this past week and snagged a spot for the 2018 season. Other golfers, like Matt Harmon, could not muster up the skills needed to deal with the situation at hand, missing short putts when they mattered most.
With only two holes left to play, Matt Harmon unraveled.
POSITIVE It wasn't necessarily his putting that let him down, although he missed several short putts on 17 and 18 - it was his mental game which collapsed and, to wit, Harmon snapped his putter in two further allowing his emotions to get the better of him.
Even more upsetting to this competitor is that, according to Golf Digest, Harmon is number one in driving distance on the Web.com Tour which means he had no troubles in getting to the green in regulation, just holing out.
What was the difference between Harmon's journey to claim his Web.com tour card and Sam Saunders' triumphant 59 with his PGA Tour card at stake? In my opinion, attitude under pressure.
MENTAL You can either give in to nerves or take a deep breath, assess the situation and not let pressure take control of you. Ok, easier said than done.
Golf for Beginners has compiled a short list of ways to combat nerves on the course.
ATTITUDE 1. Divide and Conquer: You wouldn't eat an entire cherry pie, would you? Ok, maybe some of you would... Instead of looking at the golf course as a whole, try separating the entire eighteen holes into individual slices, making each into its own journey.
2. Breathe: Sounds simple, doesn't it? Try taking a deep breath right before you take your next shot. Stand up to the golf ball and, just before you are ready to take that swing, slowly inhale and exhale. You will be amazed at how this simple fix gives you better tempo and ease of mind.
3. Opportunity Awaits: You made a bad shot, or the hole is lost. Time for positive self-talk instead of drowning your sorrows. Stay in the moment, tell yourself that the shot is over and you can't get it back and look forward to the next shot or the next adventure. Dr. Bob Winters says to create a "now" mentality. "It is far better to accept what is than to pout and become irate over something that is history and now entirely out of your control."
What do you do to combat nerves on the golf course? Post your golf tips in the comments section of Golf for Beginners and on Twitter @Golf4Beginners.


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