Here’s an Easy Way to Relieve Tension on the Golf Course
When playing golf it’s easy to sense when you start losing your tempo. The first thing you might notice is your fairway wood being reduced to the length of a putter and your leaving extra work behind for the greens keeper. Then you notice your golf swing feels quick and jerky rather than slow and fluid. You become aware of the fundamental disconnect between your upper and lower body or maybe between your hands and arms.
Then people start hearing an elevation in your voice and language some two fairways away…
If you lose your tempo, you’ve lost your focus and as it slips away, you get more fearful about all of your game. With increasing fear comes rising tension levels. The more you think about it and the more you fight and struggle with your golf game, the higher your tension and anxiety levels rise. You stand over every shot and think…
“Can I hit this one correctly?” … “Will I hit this putt too far past the hole?” … “Don’t leave this short of the green!” … “I’m about to hit this shot in the bunker… again!” … “Could I possibly miss this one foot putt?” … “Why is this happening?”
The Answer to Your Problems
You need to get rid of your tension level. You need to get rid of your anxiety. You need to get back into your groove!
One easy and helpful way is to start breathing. Take big, deep breaths that go all the way down to your diaphragm. The more oxygen coming into your body, the more your heart rate begins to come down. Lift your arms and hands high above your head while performing this helpful relaxer.
Take in some fake yawns. The truth is that professional athletes become tense and want to get more air by using this simple trick. It’s about taking control of your tension physically and commanding the body into relaxation.
Anxiety from Over Analyzing the Game
Many players’ round of golf take a turn down a bad dusty road, meaning the player gets too focused on the conscious part of the swing. You need to stay focused on playing in the subconscious. Smell the flowers or take in some nature, but more importantly calm down. Train the conscious mind to map out the game (course management) and the subconscious to play it on autopilot… (execution of play).
Stop over-thinking every situation you encounter. Avoid over-examining your swing. Just trust your stroke and all of the hard work you have put into your practice. Aim for your target and simply swing away. In other words…. just play golf!
Deciding to fix a flaw in your swing or experiment with a new grip has no business being done in the middle of your round. Just let it go and let it flow. Focus on your targets.
Talk with your playing group and remember not to overdo that either. Do anything that can help stop you from over analyzing your swing or breaking it down into small sections. Remember, it’s just a game. Keep that fact in your mind and you will always relax and be a better player for it.
Enjoy your day and share my tips with your friends…
I have only been playing for 12 months, so I have a high handicap, and get really nervous playing a low handicap golfer, or people I have not played with before. Sometimes this results in air shots and topping the ball, and me left feeling stupid. So the other day I tried your tips, deep breathing etc, but most of all telling myself I really enjoy this game, the fresh air and exercise, I must just play my own game, as I am not going to win this match , just enjoy . It was match play, I won 3 holes and halved 3 holes, against a player with a much lower handicap. So I felt really happy even though I did not win, but enjoyed the game. So thank you. I am playing tomorrow, will take try to make this routine part of my game.
Bobby Lewis says
So happy to hear this! Just remember to enjoy yourself, Cathy 🙂