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How To Prepare For A Golf Tournament
Failing to prepare is preparing to fail and ensuring that your mindset is right really helps you prepare for a golf tournament.
00:41 29 March 2023
Failing to prepare is preparing to fail and ensuring that your mindset is right really helps you prepare for a golf tournament. This could be a national amateur event, an annual golf society event, or even a club championship and you should want to perform. Get a putting set for the office so you can get into the groove of sinking putts or do your research and take a look at the course beforehand. There are various ways of getting ready; some are simply finding methods of switching your focus.
Confirm Your Strategy
While you may only be able to imagine what it would feel like to sink the final putt on the 18th hole at Augusta, you can be on your tournament course in real life. For your golf tournament, that means playing a few practice rounds and visualizing how you will approach each hole. Work out your strategy beforehand and see if you can practice that in good time. If you want to try some specific shots, make sure that you have the right clubs to execute them.
You should know the extent of your driving so imagine where your targets will be to end up on the green. That’s not just for the difficult holes but for every single one of them. Find out if there are some good misses for each shot and how you would rectify them. Do this for the bad misses too so you cover all scenarios. As you approach the hole during the tournament, you should feel like you know how to conquer it and what you are going to do which should help your confidence.
You could even walk around the course to take the time to examine each hole and work out how to get to the green. Simply pacing from the green to the hole can give you a better idea of how hard you need to hit the ball to get there.
Visualize Your Success
Feeling good and confident in yourself says a lot about what is in your subconscious mind, also known as your belief system. This is where certain actions and behaviors are predetermined, so determine them for your success. Shape your belief system by visualizing how you are going to triumph on each hole so that when it comes to it on the big day, it feels natural. You may not be given a lot of time for your shots at the tee so take the time to visualize them and allocate just five to ten minutes before each round.
Close your eyes and look into your mind’s eye to see yourself at that first tee. Know exactly what you will do before taking the shot which could be built into your routine. It may be sampling the weather conditions or taking a final look at the hole. Finally, visualize that perfect connection between the clubface and your golf ball as you see it traveling onto the green.
Fine Tune Your Performance
With your preparation nailed, it is time to look after the finer details of your game. The time to master your swing has been and gone so keep it simple. Sharpen up the smaller parts of your game that could make a difference including your approach for chips, putts, and bunkers. Stick rigidly to your shot shape and look after your short game though make sure you feel good for each putting scenario.
All this visualization and practice can feel a bit overwhelming and you may even go overboard. Thinking about how you will approach each hole and what the various outcomes might be can feel like you are going down a rabbit hole. Performance anxiety may even make your eventual game worse so try to find some respite beforehand. Make sure that golf is embedded in your brain but not at the forefront.
Take your mind off it by knowing that you have done enough preparation and doing something that relaxes you. That could be another sport like a relaxing trip to the bowling alley with some friends. It could mean going out for a meal, watching some sports, or reading a book. Whatever it is, make sure that you feel relaxed in the immediate build-up to your golf tournament so you are not fretting.
Get Your Kit Ready
The last thing you want on the day of your golf tournament is to arrive realizing that you have forgotten something. Your entire strategy could fall on the fact that your favorite club is at home. Make a list of what is in your pack as you are carrying out your preparation then tick off each item the night before the golf tournament. Maybe even a few days before so you have a chance to pick up a replacement item beforehand.
Simply having the right items may not be enough as they should be in good condition. Clean your clubfaces, charge the trolley battery, and check that you have the little things like tees and a pencil. Consider packing some wet weather gear too as you can never predict the weather to complete accuracy. Feel free to include those items that give you a little boost like a specific photo or a few sweet treats.
Your kit should also include a few bottles of water so you can keep hydrated during the round. If it is a hot day then this could make a telling difference so drink plenty of water before you tee off and even the night before. Your muscles may even be able to tell you if you have had enough water as they should feel flexible rather than stiff and aching. While you may be excused a stiff drink the night before, try not to drink excessive amounts of alcohol as a hangover will not help your performance the next day.
Allocate Your Time
Should the golf tournament take place at a course you are familiar with then it should not be difficult to find. However, if this is a new venue then work out your route and allocate enough time to get there early. That could be a full hour before you are due to tee off as you will need to sign in and then pay your entry. You will also need to warm up while everyone else arrives so you get plenty of time to practice your chips and drives, maybe even do a few stretches.
Take Care Of Your Tension
If this is a golf tournament that you want to excel at then it should feel natural to have a little tension. During and before each round, you can feel the pressure in your body. Be aware of your tension as it can play havoc on your game.
Each golf swing can be affected by the tension felt in your shoulders and arms, it may even be felt in your grip pressure. Make sure that you know how to deal with the tension with a few exercises you can do before the round and before each shot.
Preparing for a golf tournament only requires a few simple steps that can alleviate your worries. A lot of this can be done a few days before the tournament itself including working out your strategy and getting your kit ready. Practice some putts in the office and make sure that your performance is finely tuned. On the day, ensure that you are hydrated and that you can take care of any tension which can be done in the hour before you tee off.