“Tiger and his Mind Games” with Matthew Ellis

  Matthew Ellis is the lead psychology consultant for the Golf Union of Wales and is also a PGA professional. I asked Matt why Tiger always...

 tiger miss 18 Matthew Ellis is the lead psychology consultant for the Golf Union of Wales and is also a PGA professional. I asked Matt why Tiger always starts as favourite and what we, as amateurs might glean from Tiger’s mindset.

It is true. Tiger always seems to start as favourite even though his personal life and golf game are in turmoil. His off course issues are well documented as he is continually hounded by the press who question his integrity, values and lifestyle. Furthermore and according to numerous coaches his golf swing is also disjointed and often produces wild and wayward shots. And yet, he has still managed two top five finishes in this year’s first two majors and again battled bravely at St Andrews. Whatever your opinion of him he remains a performer who oozes talent and possesses mental toughness in abundance.

What separates Tiger from all other players is his ability to block out unnecessary distractions so he can focus fully on his golf when he does compete. Most other golfers would take their troubles with them onto the course be it work worries, family troubles or maybe doubts surrounding their golf game and swing. Doing this influences subsequent emotions and physical sensations that they experience such as tension, anger, frustration and these obviously have a consequence on how they act and perform. Tiger on the other hand leaves his worries behind where they belong, off the course, which allows him to focus fully on his game and to enjoy the challenges that golf presents.

Try these following steps to clear your mind before you play.

1. Record - Before you play, write out your thoughts and worries that are troubling you.

2. Examine - Look at these in the cold light of day and ask yourself are these really problems to be solved or am I making a mountain out of a mole hill?

3. Problem Solve or Box Off - If you do identify some valid problems then try to solve them. If you cannot do this immediately then box them off for another day or to be tackled after you play. Make a conscious decision to do this!

4. Keep it simple - If you are dealing with poor swing mechanics then focusing on these will not help you score better. Make the decision to keep your swing thoughts simple and continue to address and work on your game on the practice ground. After all that it was it is there for.

5. De-clutter your mind – Focus your attention on what you do need to do to play well. Think fairways, greens and pre-shot routines. These will put you firmly back in control.

6. Re-visit – After your round re-visit your worrying thought and issues and make it a priority to address them before your next game.

I hope this helps, happy golfing.

Matthew Ellis can be contacted at mellis@psychologyofgolf.co.uk

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GolfCentralDaily | Golf Parody Fun Gossip Jokes Betting Tips: “Tiger and his Mind Games” with Matthew Ellis
“Tiger and his Mind Games” with Matthew Ellis
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