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IMGCA Article - The Mental Game of Golf


Golf - The 20 Second Game

George Napoli

When it comes to scoring better, what you focus on and when you focus are the two most significant factors to consistency and improving in the game of golf. The title for this article comes from the name of a book I wrote when I received my Master Black Belt Six Sigma Certificate from Villanova University in 2007. The storyline uses Six Sigma as an improvement model to improve the time it takes to actually play the game, more importantly improving the process of the address, set up and full swing – removing the variances that cause inconsistency in bad golf swings.

Everyone knows it could take 4-5 hours to play a round of golf. While that may be true, fact of the matter is, it only takes 20-30 minutes to actually play the game, while in reality, it really only takes 20 seconds to play golf in what we call the moment of truth – ready, set, go. That's the amount of time it takes to address the golf ball, set up and hit your shot. Focus and concentrate on the right fundamentals in the right order in those 20 seconds and the rest of a four hour round is all about fun and relaxing.

Reducing the time a round takes to play into a 20 second game covers the time improvement storyline. You can't possibly concentrate and focus for the full 4-5 hours it takes anyway. Grinding for that amount of time wastes both physical and mental energy. When it comes to playing good golf, you need your physical energy and your mind fresh, alert and clear of any thoughts, other then being in the present moment and aware of what you are doing.

The 20 second game has another unique premise to it. Each 20 second game should be played as if it was its own tournament. Play each and every 20 second game with that intention and make a good swing to win the game. There is no more important shot in golf than the next one. The three components that make up the game are:

1. Ready – for addressing the ball
2. Set – for the set up position
3. Go – for the full swing

The second component to the storyline is all about improving and removing the variances that cause inconsistency. Here are a couple of the unique strategies it incorporates. It uses sequencing together with the key fundamentals for each of the ready, set, go positions. Next, you apply a simple tool like the wisdom of three to recall the basics when you need them, similar to a check list pilots use each and every time they fly. A trigger recalls the right basics at the right time so you give yourself a chance to make the best swing possible. This process introduces consistency into your game and consistency is all about improving and scoring better.

You can't talk about consistency without a brief review the mental aspect of the game. The mental game is a two sided coin. How many times have you heard, you think too hard, then other times, you don't think or concentrate enough? Thinking and concentrating is a double sided coin that can work for you, or against you. Since the mental game is so important to golf, let's look at the mental game through another related avenue.

Meditation is the real key and what plays a contributing role to consistency when it comes to the mental game. In order to play well you have to be both physically relaxed and mentally clear of any thoughts in your head. Meditation drills and exercises help you to learn how to relax and more importantly, how to clear your head quickly so you are in the present moment and ready to swing the club. By practicing meditation drills and exercises, awareness leads to better focus and concentration.

The complete strategy is fairly extensive, but I will give you a short example of how to actually play the 20 second game using the ready, set, go model. After your practice swing, you go through the address position swing cues that you properly sequenced and say the trigger word that recalls these cues. Then you move into the set position and do the same thing.

Finally you recall the trigger that leads to the moment of truth – the go position – the full swing. Here is an example of exactly how to do it. After going through the steps in the sequencing process you have determined you need to focus and concentrate on your Head – to keep it behind the ball; your right Arm to keep it tucked to your side and you want a world class Finish. You develop a swing cue and trigger. Like: I HAF (for have) to do this to make a great swing to bring up the cues for steadying the head, tucking the right arm to the body and making a finish to the full swing.

This article gives you a snap shot summary for the basics of this new insight and theory for the twenty seconds it takes to play the game. To be effective, you need to learn all the techniques, strategies and tools that make up the entire process:

  • Proper sequencing using a simple six sigma template
  • Developing effective swing cues and triggers by understanding the magic of three
  • Getting your arms around the mental game by using the meditative path that leads to awareness, concentration and focus

Golf the 20 second game is easy to learn and even easier to use. Playing golf in the 20 seconds it takes will help you become more consistent and this comprehensive strategy will lead to improving and scoring better in the game of golf!!! Good luck with this new 20 second model for playing golf and good luck to you for improving and scoring better. Now you can finally relax and enjoy the 4-5 hours a round takes without grinding all day and coming home mentally exhausted. The game can be scored by keeping track of each 20 second game: greens in regulation, drives in fairway and putts.

George Napoli is the author of this article. This article can be used for reprint on your website provided all the links in the article are complete and active.
Copyright © 2010 - All Rights Reserved Worldwide

George Napoli wrote this article and is Co-Founder of The Lazer Link and author of Golf The 20 Second game. He is a Master Black Belt Six Sigma from Villanova University and has applied many of the over 500 tools and models into this new golf strategy. Simple, effective, easy to use and even easier to remember even under pressure.

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