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Getting Over the Hurdle to a New Personal Best

Nov 2, 2014 12:59 AM
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One of the best feelings in golf is setting a new personal best score. It doesn’t really matter if you do it in a tournament, a round with your friends, or just a round when you went out by yourself after work. Whatever the circumstances may be, posting your all-time low round is a feeling that you will remember for a long time.

For me, that number is 65. I have shot 65 just once in my life, and I remember it clearly. While I played in many great tournaments through the years, my 65 came during a casual round with nothing on the line – yet I remember it like it was yesterday. Perhaps I’ll find a way to post a 64 one day, but 65 is my magic number until that day.

What is your career best round? Are you stuck on 80 and wish you could make your way into the 70’s? Maybe you have never quite gotten below 100, and feel the pressure every time you have a chance. No matter what the number is for you, the mental challenges that golfers face when trying to lower their career best are always the same.

Following are three quick tips to help you break down the barrier and successfully post your new best round –

#1 – Don’t Do the Math

The worst thing you can do is get out the scorecard early in the round and start doing the math on what you need to do to break your record. You don’t want to be thinking about that number on every shot that you hit – rather, your attention needs to be focused on the shot at hand as you make your way around the course. All you can do is your best on each shot.

#2 – Don’t Limit Yourself

Imagine that your best ever round is an 80, and you are hoping to one day break into the 70’s. That doesn’t mean you have to shoot a 79…you could go ahead and shoot a 75, or better, and breakthrough in style. Don’t put mental limits on yourself or your scoring ability based on the past. Do your best for all 18 holes and you might be surprised at what is possible.

#3 – Don’t Panic

It is easy to get nervous and panic a little bit when you start to get close to the end of the round and you still have a chance at your new record. The best way to successfully set your new record is to do exactly what you have been doing all round long. It doesn’t take anything superhuman to set a new scoring record – it just takes consistency. Keep a calm head and make good decisions all the way through to the last shot. If you are able to maintain focus and patience, that new record could be well within reach. 

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