5 Tips To Get Out Of Your Head On The Course

The biggest problem golfers have when it comes to scoring is making putts, specifically those deadly 4 to 5 footers. FlatCat can help you confidently sink more putts. When you can actually feel what square feels like, you’re gonna sink more putts…it’s that simple.

One of the challenging things you will face as a golfer is not the golf course or the elements, but the mindset we have going into our swing. Since golf is a stationary game, we have all the time to think about what we are going to do. The ultimate problem is that we have too much time to think. Becoming mentally strong on the golf course will give you a major advantage.


1. Shift Your Focus
When you are about to swing, you may get into the habit of playing golf swings through your head, or the different technical checkpoints you must work on and make sure you do right for your next swing. Finding your normal focus, whether it be just focusing on rotating your body, can help you get a clear mind to swing. Having a magnitude of thoughts going through your head about every exact detail within your mechanics will lead you into an unnatural swing. It is best to let things happen rather than trying to make them happen. Golfers should start to shift their focus on one concept only like making a smooth rhythmic movement.


2. Swing Thoughts
Having a phrase or concept to focus on through your swing can help overcome anxiety filled swings and have consistent grip pressure. One recommended swing thought is “smooth takeaway and accelerate into the ball.” Think of accelerating the ball into the exact target you want. This is a great mindset to have for a pressure filled shot or putting.


3. Trust Your Routine
There is a big difference between practicing your swing and then playing a game on the course. Do most of your thinking and mechanical tweaks on the practice range. This can help separate your mind from practice range to being on the course. Using your pre shot routine and concentrating on your rhythm can help you prepare for your swing. Your pre shot routine can help you stay consistent and focused on the course. A pre shot routine that might help is - line up from behind the ball, setting up to the ball and relax, and then let it go. Visualize the shot you want to hit and use your pre shot routine to create the feeling of producing that shot.


4. Focus On What You Want, Not What You Don’t Want
Feeling and imagining the shot is important but it also is about the target. Many players focus on where they do not want the ball to end up. They might repeat in their head before their swing “don’t hit the water” and completely lose sight of their main target. It is important in your warm up to not think about the hazards and to think about your target. Keeping your mind busy with where you want the ball to end up, enables your mind to perform the physical movement.


5. Be Present
When putting many people over analyze and your mind interferes with your putt. Try this drill to be more aware of what your mind is telling you. 

  1. First place the ball one inch from the hole and putt it in - this is so easy and almost seems silly
  2. Then move the ball back six inches and putt it
  3. Then 12 inches and putt it

This is your baseline experience and your mind is silent and not over analyzing because the shots are not challenging. From these short distances there is minimal thinking and you just do it. 

Now keep taking the ball back 6 inches, you will notice at a certain point your experience has changed. Your mind might be talking to you and giving you criticism. Or you keep taking more and more glances at the cup. Or the panic starts to settle in. Being aware when you are not going through baseline anymore and your mind takes over is the key of this drill. 

When you catch your mind over analyzing at a certain distance, just stop. See if you can stroke it the same way you did when the ball was closer and you had freedom through the baseline experience. When you continually putt in your baseline experience, the stroke starts to feel easy and flows.

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