Why Tiger Woods is So Good
Most of us see Tiger Woods as having the best swing in the history of golf. He most certainly has, but his swing alone has not been the only contributor to his golfing success.
Tiger has given us the perfect golf swing model to follow, thank you Tiger! but the questions we ask is, why does he win so often and look so threatening in every tournament he plays?
The answer can be found in an interview a few years back when Tiger said his biggest asset to his game was “my mind.”
I decided to dig a little deeper and discovered why Tiger Woods is such a phenomenal golfer. Read on.
Tiger Woods first impressions of the golf swing were formed as a toddler while watching his father Earl, hitting balls in the garage of their home.
Earl taught Tiger from a young age how to think his way around the golf course, to manage his game without making mental errors, and also gave him lessons in mental toughness. He would intentionally distract Tiger while they played together helping him to overcome distractions and focus harder on the shot at hand.
We may think that Tiger Woods grew up just perfect in every way, but there was an incident on his 13th birthday that changed his attitude forever.
His buddies sang happy birthday to him on the first tee, Tiger then proceeded to play poorly in the round. Naturally, like most kids he started moaning, whining, and hitting the ball around aimlessly.
After the game, his father Earl had a serious wrap with Tiger,reminding him that the golf course owed him nothing, golf owed him nothing, and his own father owed him nothing, and that his behavior was very poor.
Tiger Woods never spoke to his father for three days,when finally he found the courage and told Earl that he understood what he said and would never quit again. Since that day Tiger has never ever quit on anything.
It was Earl’s goal to train this young Tiger Woods better than any other golfer had been trained, and what a fantastic job he and Tida, his wife have done.
Tiger's Mom also contributed hugely to her sons success by teaching Tiger patience and how to concentrate on the golf course. Coming from an eastern culture, she took Tiger to a Buddhist temple where he learned to enhance his mind control skills through meditation.
Tiger Woods still to this day pays visits to a temple near to where he was brought up in Cypress, California.
Tiger improved his concentration ability dramatically from experiencing a relaxed state of mind through meditation. This mind state is what we recognize as being “in the zone” where our mind and bodies let go and work together in complete harmony.
Most of us have experienced this “concentration” or “zone” when we day dream. You seem to feel so distant and calm for a moment or two. Imagine if you could call on this emotion at will the way Tiger Woods does!
Tiger Woods learned from this early age to deal positively with pressure situations, and relieve himself of pressure when the heat was on. This is why he is able to play so well in Major tournaments. This mind set and attitude has been evident in all the tournaments he has played and won.
Pressure has taken its toll with many golfers in the dying holes of tournaments and especially the Majors, whereas Tiger can lift himself up to the occasion.
Next time you watch Tiger play, take notice of his facial expression, his walking pace and his reaction after each shot. His expression never changes. This trance of concentration as it appears to us is much like the way Jack Nicklaus and Ben Hogan used to experience when playing.
Another demonstration of this bubble of intense concentration was displayed by Ben Hogan, while playing in the Masters one year he did not even notice his partner’s hole in one, so intense was his concentration on the course. This state of mind seems to be a common denominator with all great champions.
With this kind of mental preparedness in his young life, it would explain why Tiger has developed into the greatest golfer of all time.
Besides having his parents as excellent mentors from this early age, Tiger also had excellent golf coaching from reputable golf professionals, Rudy Duran from the age of 5 till he was 10 years old and John Anselmo during his teens till he was 18 years old.
These two reputable Californian based instructors moulded Tigers swing, his set up, and shot making ability, and also trained him to use his mind to lower his scores.
Mental training of a different kind
Dr Jay Brunza a clinical psychologist and good friend of Earl Woods, played a major role in Tigers amateur career, and was responsible for showing Tiger from an early age the real meaning of how to “concentrate” during a round of golf.
For a number of years Dr Brunza shared time with Tiger by not only counselling him but also as his caddy during many amateur events which he won. This included 3 U.S. Junior Amateur titles and the 1994/5/6 U.S. Amateur titles.
It was thought that Tiger had been hypnotized by Brunza, and some evidence suggests this, but the big question loomed, what did Brunza teach Tiger?
Tiger gave a hint on a Larry King show in 1998. He said he did not talk too much to his fellow players because he was too busy concentrating on taking care of business in his own world.
Later in February 2000 Tiger said, he stays in the present and focuses on what needs to be done in the now! This is the major difference that separates Him from his fellow golfers. He has repeated this statement a few times since then.
In order to win and play your best golf you have to have a present mind focus. In fact this goes in any sport, you have to have the discipline to apply it time and time again. Tiger has managed to master the present mind focus more than any other player.
Evidence suggests that Tiger has learned to hypnotise himself from the influence of Dr Brunza. He has been seen the blinking his eyes on the course, giving us insight that could be the signal he uses to enter and exit from this relaxed concentration state. He is then in a position to enable his body and mind to produce the shot he wants to execute with ease and no pressure.
On the subject of hypnosis, it has many advantages to help us perform better and is considered a natural state of mind. The use of hypnosis opens your way to mastery by unlocking your true potential.
Hypnosis I feel has given Tiger Woods the edge in the following ways.
He is able to remain positive through unlocking the hidden potential he has in his subconscious mind.He can stay relaxed in mind and body and focus better.He can stay in the present longer to execute his task. He has developed a focused state of mind.
has been fortunate that he has had the opportunity to be positively mentally conditioned from an early age. These later meetings with Brunza purely served as a reinforcement of his early exposure to improving his mind.
It is now pretty clear to me why he has performed the way he has and will continue to do so.
Here are some of Tiger’s contributions to his winning ways:
His course management is impeccable which is mainly achieved by the way he prepares for tournaments.
The skill he displays on the course with his shot making is evidence of the quality of his practice sessions.
The thorough pre planning he goes through before Major tournaments shows by how few mental errors if any at all he makes when playing.
His pace of play never changes throughout his round even when he makes birdies and eagles or drops shots.
His keeps his swing the same speed for the whole round.
He is single minded, meaning that he does not have a whole lot of thoughts running through his mind when he is playing. He keeps to perhaps one swing thought. This allows him to swing freely.
The information on this page has been compiled from one of the books about Tiger Woods and other resources. “Think like Tiger” by John Andrisani.
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