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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Good Mental Tip from T. Woods

I'm a huge advocate of focusing on the mental side of golf, especially since I've recognized that it may be the biggest weakness in my own game. Of course, you cannot be a physical wreck but have a perfect mental approach and expect to play well. However, when you have some decent skills and want to take your game to the next level, your attitude and what goes on in your head will make all the difference.

I was surprised to read that Tiger Woods had never played Oakmont until this past weekend. He was there to prep for the U.S. Open and to put on a little show for some heavy Amex users. This little exchange (full article) between Tiger and one of the "regular folks" at Oakmont really says a lot about how Tiger thinks about his game.

Woods hit a stinger 3-iron on the 428-yard third hole with a slight breeze at his back, making sure he stayed out of the "Church Pew" bunkers that separate the third and fourth fairways, long strips of grass in the sand that look like benches.

"Can you hit one from the Church Pews?" someone said to him.

"No," Woods replied with a grin.

"Will you teach us how?" the man said.

"How to play out of it? You hit it right here," Woods said, pointing to the short grass in the fairway. "I go crazy when I watch guys in practice round play shots from a drop area. Why bring negativity into your thoughts? I only practice from where I expect to play."

Tiger's golf game is so good, that he might not need much practice out of fairway bunkers, unlike the rest of us. Still, having a positive attitude and almost KNOWING that he'll be in the fairway illustrates one reason why he is so good. This an excellent lesson for the everyday hacker like me.


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