I have played a ton of tournament golf. This has been at the local, state, and division 1 NCAA levels. I’ve shot 64’s and 84’s. Nerves definitely play a factor, maybe the largest. 

I had the privilege of playing with two amateurs faIrly new to golf over the last month in “meaningful” events. The pressure seemed to get the best of them. 

Richard Ficca was one of those amateur golfers. He owns Gorilla Bench Training Center. He held records in power lifting and bench press. Visit his gym here: 

He and I had made a bet with me that he could put his bench press ability against my golfing ability.

However many times he could bench press 225 pounds versus me attempting the weight would be how many strokes he would get on the golf course. He did 55 reps, I did 1. See the video here:

So we proceeded later that week to play golf at Seminole Lake Country club He had a 54 shot lead (or 3 shots a hole). During the round, I remember everyone kept doing the math of where the match stood. Rich and his “caddy” were calculating “the number” in his head after every couple holes. 

I felt comfortable, I could tell he had nerves. I knew that a thought process directed about “results” would make it difficult for him. I just took each shot, one shot at a time. Thats all I could control!

At the end, I had shot a three under 68 and Rich had a 127, I had clipped him by 59 shots. This was a fun event where we raised over $1000 for charity. 

The second amateur was a client of mine who had never played in any Men’s Association events at our club. I convinced him to partner with me in the Member/Member. He was constantly evaluating where we stood, what the other guys in our group were doing. I had to explain to him one shot at a time, you can only control the current shot you have. There is a lot to be gained by staying present in the moment.

Finally, one of the professional golfers that works at our Physical Therapy and Golf Performance Center on Ulmerton road in Clearwater explained to me that he doesn’t look at his score as a true evaluation of how well he played. He looked at how well he played by how focused he was on the shot in front of him and not the results. 

Our training at Florida Physio is very much like this. We have to worry about one problem area at a time, chip away at it, and then move on to the next so that our clients meet their goals. Here is an example of this with another player.

The point is, you can only control what’s in front you. Take it one shot at a time, stick to your routine, and you’ll shave strokes. 

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