There have been significant signals of intent shown by the guys at the top of the game.
Namely last week, Bryson DeChambeau going over to Dubai and winning the Desert Classic. Which kind of flies in the face of the comments recently made by Rory McIlroy where he stated that the European Tour is a ‘stepping stone’ for the PGA Tour.
Clearly not the case with regard to the “Scientist” who wanted to take his brand international and add a win to his name on foreign shores. Yet in the defence of Mr McIlroy’s points, regarding Europe being a weaker tour, the win did not move him up the world rankings, even though Justin Thomas, Brooks Koepka and Dustin Johnson didn’t play.
Meanwhile Justin Rose teed it up for the first time this year with a new set of irons in his bag, a new caddy and a tighter grasp of the world number one spot. There are a few headlines around the globetrotting nature of the week’s events. An American winning in Europe, well Dubai, but you get my meaning and an Englishman winning in the States. This is Rose’s tenth US win and has now surpassed Faldo’s tally, which he has done quietly and relentlessly over the past ten years.
He wasn’t expected to win really, given that he hasn’t won a tournament in January since 2002. I mean with a new set of clubs and a new bag man, things were potentially against him, but his pure technique, consummate professionalism and iron grinding personality pulled him through. Even though he had to have a ‘reminder’ chat with himself, after bogeying three of his first five holes, on the seventh tee saying to himself, quintessentially English in its politeness, “You are the world number one for a reason, so start playing like it, please.” He spoke and he listened.
In this short exchange you can see how a Tour Pro handles a ‘wobble’ in performance on the course. Instead of doing what is naturally negative being the slew of internal and external self-abuse both verbal and sometimes physical. He just had a quiet moment, had a gentle word with himself, reminding him that he is the best in the world, leading the tournament and has twelve holes of work ahead of him to get the job done. Far more productive than the alternative, literally.
The performance coaches would call it ‘resetting’, where you take stock of the situation, remind yourself that you are capable of the task ahead and then recommit with a plan. The opposite being the lesson I had yesterday where my player was saying, in strokeplay conditions that if he is more than six over after five holes, he mentally throws the towel in. I guess it’s a form of resetting, probably the opposite end of the spectrum.
So what we discussed was how to split the round into more bite sized chunks where eighteen holes are split into six, three hole competitions. You set a score for each of the three holes; say if you are playing off eighteen, three over par should do it. Then create a plan for each hole for you to play to the ‘par’ score of three over. If you beat your score, then you win the game. Do this six times and see how you fare.
What this helps you do is portion out the round into manageable sections, giving you the chance to reset, refocus and re-engage. All vital aspects of managing your state and your golf ball over the period of four to five hours. For example, if you have a blow out in the middle of your round, you get to reset quickly and get back into the game. It’s almost like having a secret default button which you can press before things get too out of control.
It works for the professionals, which means there is a strong probability it will work for you! If you feel this was of help look us up at the Golf Integrated Academy at Vila Sol (912 263 555), I am sure we can help even more.