Monday, August 05, 2013

Book quotes: Golf is a Game of Confidence by Bob Rotella

 Here is a selection of my favourite quotes from Golf is a Game of Confidence, reviewed a few days ago:

-  Some golfers tell me it's too hard to stay positive and confident. They may try it for a while, but they give up when the run into adversity. I reply that it may seem to be easier to be negative in the short run. But in the long run you're going to waste a lot more energy being negative. You'll flail away at the game but you'll never find out how good you could have been. So the truth of the matter is, if you intend to invest time and energy in golf, it's a lot easier to be positive.

- ... a good game plan helps a player to swing confidently, because he knows he's already made the most rational, intelligent strategy choices.

- All a player can do is stay in the present, commit himself to the process of hitting good shots, and give himself the best possible chance.

- A golfer has to train his swing on the practice tee, then trust it on the course.

- Some swing thoughts are better than others. In general, the less mechanical, the better. Reminding yourself to have a nice, even tempo is a good swing thought. Thinking about keeping the club head behind the hands on the downswing is not.

- A player has to know himself. He has to know how much and what kinds of practice he needs to be at his best. And he has to put that into practice. But going past that point can be counterproductive. It's analagous to the twin pitfalls - being too tight or too sloppy.

- One of the ironies of the game is that bad players have a harder time accepting bad shots than good players do. ... If high handicappers learned nothing else about the mental side of golf, they could improve just by learning to accept the result of any shot with equanimity. And they'd be more pleasant company.

- He had to understand the paradox that in golf, to gain some control over what happens, a player has to abandon the notion that he can control everything.

- ... the optimal state of mind isn't an object that a golfer can acquire, own, put on a shelf, and take down for use whenever it's required.
Rather, it's a condition that can be fragile, ephemeral and maddeningly elusive. It emerges from the confluence of a lot of factors, some very subtle. And the factors vary from golfer to golfer. The best a golfer can do is ascertain as best he can the factors that work for him and strive to make certain they are present every time he competes. The optimal state of mind is something a player must work on patiently, every day.

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