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Newsletter May 2012


At the PGA Players Championship last week we watched Kevin Na fight his mental block that caused self-inflicted full swing yips. He waggled, waggled, and waggled, took fake swings, false started and backed off shots as he tried to release the demons of indecision in his head. Spectators, who had no patience, compounded the problem for Kevin when he could hear them saying “pull the trigger.” Kevin said this mental block was due to a swing change he is making that he is not comfortable with.

A few years ago we watched Sergio Garcia grip and regrip his club over and over as he wrestled with his grip change. At the Mercedes Championships he was seen adjusting his grip and waggling up to 24 times as he tried to get comfortable enough to hit his tee shot. At the Canadian Open the frustrated gallery following Garcia counted, “Une, deux, trios” with each waggle. Sergio said he regrips and waggles to give himself time to get his head clear of negative thoughts before hitting a shot.

Jack Nicklaus' slow play also caused spectators discomfort when they followed him. However, his slow play was not out of indecision or fear. Jack taught us to visualize every shot and to be more meticulous in preparation. Jack said, “I think it (preparation) is the single most important maneuver in golf. It is the only aspect of the swing over which you have 100% control. If you set up incorrectly, you'll hit a lousy shot even if you make the greatest swing in the world.”

Sunday in her Sybase Match Play Championship semifinal against Azahara Munoz, Morgan Pressel was penalized for slow play. After Munoz and Pressel fell eight minutes behind the allotted pace on the 11th hole, LPGA rules officials placed the match on the clock. Playing the 12th hole, Morgan took 2 minutes, 9 seconds to play her three shots which was 39 seconds over the 30-second limit per shot. In match play, the penalty for slow play is loss of the previous hole. Pressel thought she had won the hole with a par to Munoz’ bogie giving her a 3-up lead in the match. Instead of being 3-up, Pressel was back to being only 1-up. 

Last season, the LPGA issued five slow-play penalties. The last time the PGA Tour is believed to have issued a penalty stroke for slow play was in 1995. Glen Day was penalized a shot after the third round of the Honda Classic.

Does a slow player in your foursome frustrate you?

Do you hurry and rush your swing when playing with a slow player?

Do you play faster when your group falls behind the group in front?  

Does it bother you if the group behind you is waiting on every shot?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, this article is for you: ''Don't let Type-A tendencies rule your game. Resist the urge to get upset with slow play in the group ahead.”  http://bit.ly/Lw0FVk

© Copyright PMI 2012. All Rights Reserved.

Play "In the Zone" With Joan

If this newsletter is helpful to you, and you want to learn more, call Joan for a complimentary 15-minute consultation about your mental game. She can be reached by phone at 828-696-2547, by email at joan@pmi4.com, through the Positive Mental Imagery website or blog. Other tips to improve your mental golf game are available on this website, where you can sign up for a free mental golf newsletter and purchase empowering self-hypnosis mental golf CDs.

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