I recently went to the PGA Teaching and Coaching Summit and had a chance to gain some valuable insights from the most respected golf instructors in the world. One of the classes was titled Peak Performance Practice For Skill Development presented by Lynn Marriott and Pia Nilsson.
They worked closed with Annika Sorenston as well as recent PGA Tour Winner and Chicago native Kevin Streelman.
They focus on developing Essential Playing Skills in their students so they can play their best while on the course and provide tangible ways to practice.
Essential Playing Skills
- Play Box: Executing shots in an athletic performance state and being present through your senses.
- Decision and Commitment: Having the courage to commit to a simple and clear decision for every shot
- Balance: Having a good sense of balance improves the swing and stroke
- Tempo: Having an intimate sense of tempo helps the body and swing be in sync for the day.
- Tension Awareness: Tension kills the golf swing so it's best to be aware and monitor tension levels.
- Emotional Resilience: Being able to go to your happy place allows you access to your whole brain.
- Storage of Memory: Events that get emotionalized get stored deeper in the brain. Being happy or neutral in you post-shot routine is desirable.
- Self-Talk: Make sure to be your best friend and coach when playing. You're the only one out there, so talk to yourself in a productive way.
Every golfer knows the importance of the mental game but rarely does anything to practice it. We now have ways to practice the mental game through Vision54! Lynn and Pia have an iPhone app that gives specific drills to work on the above skills. As an instructor it's important that my clients not only have solid fundamentals with their swing, but are well rounded golfers that can execute on the course. These skills are what all good players have in common and cannot be practiced enough.