Practice Golf in your head!
Ok. I left you last time convinced that we can do things in our mind only that will translate into correct physical action. You were able to transfer the ability to write your name in the air with your elbow that you never use that way!
I do feel it necessary to state, however, that what we call “the mind” is not necessarily only located in the brain. Yes, it’s probably the biggest part and we’re not going to go into the science of this but you intuitively know it to be true. You’ve all heard such sayings as: “gut feelings” or “from the heart”, or “my body is telling me something” etc. Just keep this thought in mind as we go.
I want to now give you some more help and detail on how to do “imagination practice” or “mental golf practice” as opposed to real golf practice.
A scientist, R.A. Vandell did a study on mental performance practice. He had his subjects standing in front of a real dartboard and throwing imaginary darts. At the end of the study, these people showed the same gain in proficiency at dart throwing as a control group who spent the same amount of time practicing with real darts!
Another example of this reported on by Research Quarterly, tested sinking free throw shots in basketball. There were 3 groups in the study. One group did no practice whatsoever as a control. The 2nd group practiced 20 min/day for 20 days actually shooting shots from the free throw line. A 3rd group just stood at the line and did imagination practice for 20 min/day for the 20 days.
At the end of the 20 days, the group who did no practicing had no improvement, obviously, The group that actually shot baskets returned improvement of 24% more shots made. And the group that did imagination practice resulted in a 23% improvement not actually having sunk any balls in reality during that 20 days.
Mental practice acts as the target instructions or guidance programming for your cybernetic mechanism.
So let’s get right down to the necessaries for golf practice using only our mind:
Get yourself as relaxed as possible without falling asleep. Imagine a place that you know that always makes you peaceful. Slow down your breathing and make it deeper. Squeeze, hold and then release each of your muscle groups. Talk yourself into a calm state.
You want to see yourself through your own eyes, not somebody else’s. If you can see the back of your head, you’re not doing it right.
Get as specific as possible. If you know that you have a major fault that if you got rid of it, would clear up a big one big problem for instance, then do your mental practice while focusing on doing that one item correctly, over and over.
Only picture yourself playing the golf shot perfectly, every time. Sinking the putt, landing approaches inside 2 feet, striping drives right down the middle
Inject feelings and emotions into everything you see
Conjure up details of the golf course environment. Use your favorite course
Be consistent. Do this regularly. You can do it for a short time or a long time.
Do it as you go to sleep. Do it as you wake up.
Take a break and imagine sinking 4 foot putts one after another from breaking positions.
Imagine yourself becoming like a robot out there with a consistent, machine-like repeatability.
It can also be helpful to go back and repeat excellent rounds that you’ve had in the past, over and over and over in your head in order to tell your unconscious mind what it is you want it to do. The more you think about hitting straight, long shots or precision chips, the more you will get that result…
It’s that simple. You will be training your golf mind in a sort of practice way, how you want it to respond when out there on the course. Pre-live those great shots you are going to have on your home course. The more detailed you can get with your mental golf practice, the better.
Hypnosis, Accelerated Learning techniques, Guided visualizations are all forms of this that can enhance the effectiveness. Stay tuned for more golf information coming your way. Start the training now…Until next time,
Greens and fairways,
Do you still really think that the only way to get better at this game is to take lessons and then practice until your hands bleed? Does that work? Sometimes for some people. At the beginner level, yes, you need to get the basics down and develop a decent swing. But what of all those millions of golfers around the world that have a decent swing…that have taken lessons…that have had plenty of great shots before.
Why can’t you put together 18 holes of good golf if you can put together 3 or 4?….You can!
Now, go with me here a minute…you’ve produced a great shot before with a given club right? So you know that the problem is not with your body unless the body has significantly changed since you had that shot right?
So if that’s not the problem, what is? I don’t think I have to tell you. I think your clubs know the answer since they don’t change from shot to shot. As I write this and you read this, I am reminded of a friend who recounted to me about a story that Jack Nicklaus dad used to tell about young Jack. It seems that Jack never did think he had the best or prettiest swing on the tour. And, he didn’t think he had the most talent. He just KNEW he was going to make a putt…or a perfect swing…or win the tournament.
Would you like to get some of that? Break 80 Without Practice