Article Image

Controling Anger on the Course

Posted July 13, 2015 in feel mental beginner intermediate advanced crossover distance

We've all been there, things have been going anything but how expected they would. You are livid and not sure whether you want to just walk of the course, or break every club in your bag over a tree. One thing all players know deep down, but either don't listen to or don't care is this: playing angry is the worst thing possible for a game in trouble. It's easier said than done to use the following tips in the middle of a tirade, but taking them to heart now can help when you find yourself in a blood boiling situation in the future.

Golf is Only a Game: It seems so easy to understand when you're not mad, but you have to put the game into perspective. You came out on the course to relax and have fun, not to be angry for 4 hours. If you wanted that then you would have done your taxes instead. Remember the worst day on the golf course is better than any day at work.

Always Stay Positive: Being negative towards a bad shot is hard to avoid, but you must avoid it for your current and future round's sake. You must always have a selective memory in order to stay positive. The world's best athletes always dwell on the positive when their playing their best. Rather than focus on the negative of the forced water carry and the seemingly inevitable water ball, bring up a memory of one of your most perfect golf shots and let that be the only thing you think about. You'll be surprised how good your next shot is.

Take a Step Back: It's easy to miss something crucial about your game when you are livid. Take a step back and analyze what’s happening. Rather than cursing at yourself repeatedly for continuing to hit hook after hook, use your experience to self diagnose and fix your problem. Also, if you haven't played or practiced in a while and are playing poorly, you shouldn’t be shocked or upset. Golf is a game that requires a large amount of muscle memory. You can lose around 33% of your muscle memory in 7-10 days. The good news is, restoring your muscle memory after taking time off generally only takes a week or so of solid practice. So if you haven't played in awhile, try not to sweat it and practice more.

Be on your own team: You have no one else to rely on out on the course. No one else's signature is on your card but your own. That being said, stop sabotaging yourself on the course. Getting so mad you can't see straight hurts no one but yourself. No one would sabotage their own team if they wanted to win, so don't do it to yourself. Cheer yourself on, and stay positive.

Get your mind off the course: Typically we would suggest keeping your mind on the course and staying focused on the task at hand, but if you're having a rough day at the "office", it could be time to take your thoughts elsewhere. Think about your upcoming vacation, think about your favorite TV show, or even think about that hilarious cat video Joe from accounting sent you. Once you've been able to depressurize, then take your thoughts back to the course and finish your business.