Golf is very much played in the head before it is transferred to the body. Indeed, most pros will tell you golf is ten per-cent technique, 90 per-cent mental.
The percentages are probably nearer 40-60 for weekend golfers but what goes on between the ears – some describe it as the 15th club in your bag – has a strong bearing on how successful you are on the golf course.
Knowing what we want to do before we do it is influenced by two real factors – positive and negative. The way that we respond can make a significant difference to the way that we play.
In an effort to discover how YOU rate as a mentally strong golfer, we have asked some key questions with multi-choice answers. Complete these with an honest assessment of your reactions in the given situations, respond with your score and we will tell you whether you are one of the following:
- Alpha - an arrogant, self centred, opinionated, cruel, aggressive winner.
- Beta - a focussed, goal setting, ambitious competitor.
- Gamma - a work hard, try anything, enthusiastic player.
- Delta - a wuss with ‘loser’ stamped across your forehead.
1. You’re on the first tee in the monthly medal or society stableford; your two playing partners have teed off and found the fairway. Do you think…?
a)’Sod me! This will be the first time I've seen three make the fairway off the first.'
b) ‘I’ll show these lads that a higher handicap player is about to whup their ass.’
c) ‘Shall I aim for the trees on the left and let my natural fade bring it back onto the fairway?’
d) ‘I wonder what cruel fate awaits this shot.’
|2. You have just hit your Sunday-best drive past them and into the middle of the fairway. What do you say to your playing partners?|
a) ‘Thank God that was straight.’
b) ‘Where’d it go?’
c) ‘Eat that!’
d) ‘Well done lads – good start.’
|3. All three of you have hit the green with your approach shots and yours is nearest the pin. First to play knocks it in from 30 feet. What’s your mental reaction?|
a) ‘Jammy devil! I hope it doesn’t continue for the whole round.’
b) ‘Lovely putt.’
c) ‘Mine should be easier.’
d) ‘I wish I could do that.’
|4. Next hole is a 230-yard par-3 with a pond lurking to the left and a bunker yawning to the right. Your tactics are...|
a) ‘I’ve got a handicap stroke here; I’ll play short of the hazards and try to chip close to save my par.’
b) ‘I’ll aim for the pond, but I’ll probably slice it in the bunker, then I bet I’ll thin my next into the pond anyway.’
c) ‘What's a 3-wood for. Whoopee!
d) ‘If I take my driver, I should carry both the hazards and there’s less trouble at the back.’
|5. You’ve posted a terrific score - net 66. However, one of your playing partners off a lower handicap beats you by one shot to win competition with a net 65. What do you say?|
a) ‘Playing with you must have really inspired me. It's great that we got on the rostrum. Well done.’
b) I’m bloody second, beaten by a lucky putt and my handicaps going to get chopped – for nothing.’
c) ‘I can’t believe it! Pinch me somebody!’
d) ‘Great result, we got in the prize money. Terrific play.’
Now submit your answers on The Forum and discover what kind of player you are and what you have to do to improve your mental strength.