Yet it really is the best story I’ve come across post lockdown. Our accountant, who has been a frustrated 15 handicap golfer for the last 20 years, decided to use his time during lockdown enrolled on a golf performance online seminar session. From which he has emerged a calm, thoughtful, at peace individual who has very few expectations.

The transformation has been so dramatic, that his patient and long-suffering golf coach, immediately saw a difference in his ball striking and accuracy on the range that he asked, “What has happened?” Even his playing partners have noticed a huge change in his on course demeanour, so much so that he is being asked what has changed?

All that has happened is that he has had a complete change, or rerouting of his mental expectations on the golf course, he now understands; how to stay in the moment, how to swing without any technical thoughts and more importantly, how to enjoy a round of golf. He was saying that he could now play golf without being handcuffed to incredibly negative internal self-talk, all because of this online seminar.

Apparently the premise of the seminars, was that 98 percent of your time on the golf course is spent not hitting the ball, so to control your mood, your positivity and focus is all about the 98 percent, not the other 2 percent. Most definitely you should not be thinking any technical thoughts during the 2 percent, which is where almost all amateurs fall over.

To put it simply, if you’re going to improve, your game fits into three different categories; the first is taking a lesson and then understanding the game in a little bit more detail either from a coach or an online seminar, the second is where you go and implement the change and learn how to move differently or think differently through practice off the golf course and finally you then move to the golf course and this is where the 98 and 2 percent come into play. You completely dedicate your time to visualising the shots that you want to hit, making sure that you enjoy your time on the golf course, and have zero expectations.

This is where our preacher-come-accountant found the greatest change in his attitude. He had been coached that he should have no expectations of performance. This means that he totally immerses himself in the routine of hitting the golf ball without any thought of what he might or might not be able to accomplish. He always chooses a shot that he believes he can hit (with minimum stress attached to it) while having maximum focus and visualisation on where he wants the ball to go. Simples!

Then he swings, with zero technical thoughts, pure rhythm balance and focus on where the ball needs to go is all that goes through his mind.

No matter where the ball goes, because of the zero expectations there is no attachment of disappointment or excitement. A lovely place to be on the golf course. Almost Zen you might say.

He totally attributes this zero expectations as being the underpinning of his calmness on the golf course. He says that he has the expectations of a total beginner golfer. Now I’ve never heard that before, yet it makes perfect sense. If you have the attitude of a novice golfer how can you expect hit a great shot, it doesn’t mean the hope isn’t there, it also allows you to concentrate on the pre shot routine and then see what happens.

Which is why you often hear the Tour Pros saying, “take one shot at a time, and the next shot is always going to be your most important.”

Have a try, and if you need any help you know where we are, Golf Integrated Academy at Villa Sol – 912 263 555.