Sunday, March 11, 2007

New Golf Season: Part II

Alright then, after doing some soul searching and weighing the pros and cons, you've made the decision to dedicate yourself to another season of golf. In fact, you've decided to try and play better golf as well. Congratulations! So what's next? Do you pull out the clubs and start whacking ball after ball at the driving range, or pour through golf instruction books and magazines looking for swing patches and quick fixes? Most golfers including myself have enacted similar scenarios early in the golf season, and discovered that such approaches ultimately don't work. They often create false expectations about improved performance that simply fall flat when trying to bring it to the course. We need to start out with broad "strokes", so to speak. Unless you are physically fit and active throughout the year you should spend a few weeks getting in shape for golf. Physical fitness will definitely increase your chances of playing better golf - no guarantees, but strength, balance, flexibility, and stamina all contribute to improved performance. Your routine should include core training (working your extremities and body parts while keeping your torso centered or in place to strenghten the muscles that stabilize the body), some cardio work, stretching, and strength training. If possible, you should maintain a workout schedule throughout the golf season. Next time we'll discuss incorporating mental preparation techniques for starting the golf year, but your physical fitness regime will form a basis for an enhanced golf mind as well.

Go to New Golf Season: Part III

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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

New Golf Season: Part I

For those of us who live in more northern climes the golf season will soon be here. Before you dust off the clubs this spring why not do an honest appraisal of your expectations for the new season? Do you really enjoy playing the game while spending significant time and money on it every year, or has it become another social routine, or misplaced passion that leaves you feeling drained and empty too frequently? In other words, don't play golf out of habit or obligation, or the expectations of friends. You should play golf because you truly love being out there whacking an indifferent little white ball around an unforgiving course. For some it may be the competitive challenge or a desire to improve, for others it may be the camaraderie and health benefits, and for many it may be a combination of qualities, or even intangible benefits that create a desire to play golf. Golf has become a trendy sport much glamorized by television and phenoms like Tiger Woods - all of this buzz can excite you to play golf when it really doesn't speak to the real you! We shouldn't try and manufacture the desire to golf as there are many things in life that are far cheaper, less time consuming, and every bit as enjoyable as a round of golf.

In the five hours (excluding travel time) spent during a golf round you could:

  • Spend some quality time with your kids or spouse
  • Visit or contact an ailing or otherwise neglected friend or family member
  • Volunteer for some community work
  • Plan your next vacation
  • Complete unfinished business or chores around the house
  • Update your web site
  • Engage in a myriad of other neglected activities unique to your situation and lifestyle

    Have you addressed the motivation, priority, and lifestyle issues related to playing golf? Having done that, are you still determined to get out on the links? If the answer is yes, then you have accomplished Step One for the new season without even swinging a club. Go to New Golf Season: Part II

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