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UnbreakableBoy

Why am I doing this! After a poor shot... I step back up, no pressure and knock it flush... I’m confused.

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It was a simple post about something I feel IS mental. I know the answer. I’d asked for input, drills and your own experiences, to have maybe a little better understanding and build my knowledge from others experiences. That is all. Some of your input was terrific. And I thank you all. As for practice swings... I’ve heard countless times folks commenting on how their “practice” swing was so good etc... I was merely making an analogy. Again, mental. Have a great day. 

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It is a funny little phenomenon.

Had a card-chucker of a round on Saturday behind a  couple of slow-moving foursomes and dropped a bunch of second balls after shots good and bad. Can't really say that my mental game was in order at any point. I was really kind out of my mind, but those second shots were something else. I killed a few of them. My 5W saw 230 yards for the first time ever on a second ball from the 18th fairway.

Maybe it isn't really about being calm. It's just the total lack of real consequence.

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I still think that the 2nd shot being better than the first is more to do with your body knowing what you did on the last swing, and you seeing the outcome. It isn't about pressure. How many times do you hear people say, "I hit the ball great on the range!" That is because they hit ball after ball, and get that instant feedback. It allows them to get some sort of consistency together for a short period of time. Get them on the course, and it falls apart because no one plays golf hitting 5 golf balls a minute.

Heck, some people are upset with their first attempt. Is that the right frame of mind to hit a golf ball? I doubt people are becoming the Buddha and going all Zen on the 2nd shot.

The primary reason people struggle with their 1st shot is because it's their golfing ability. That isn't to say thinking about the correct things for that golfer doesn't help them optimize their ability. There isn't anyway a double digit handicap golfer is going to string together shots like a scratch golfer just by thinking the right way. Over 18 holes, the bad shots are going to show up.

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14 minutes ago, UnbreakableBoy said:

It was a simple post about something I feel IS mental. I know the answer. I’d asked for input, drills and your own experiences, to have maybe a little better understanding and build my knowledge from others experiences. That is all.

If you knew the answer why ask?

I think maybe you were looking for confirmation, not an actual discussion.

A lot of people here have a lot of experience.

Seems like a waste to tune it out.

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2 minutes ago, iacas said:

If you knew the answer why ask?

I think maybe you were looking for confirmation, not an actual discussion.

A lot of people here have a lot of experience.

Seems like a waste to tune it out.

Hey! As I said... in my mind I think I knew the answer. But all of y’all are a wealth of knowledge. And getting that perspective gave me different things I may not have considered as well as that confirmation. I think that’s as important as anything.  And I think that’s why forums can be as helpful as they can be. So thank you. 

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Couple of things come to mind: 

It's not unreasonable to think the second swing benefits from a short term physical 'calibrating' effect from the first swing. Same reason one can get on a roll on the range. 

It can also be that the 2nd shot is typically less meaningful, is less anxiety ridden and hence is played with much less adrenaline. 

 

 

 

  

Edited by GolfLug

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9 minutes ago, GolfLug said:

It can also be that the 2nd shot is typically less meaningful, is less anxiety ridden and hence is played with much less adrenaline. 

I wonder how often this happens. Do people really get that stressed over a golf shot? Is it really that common? Do people just use it as an excuse?  

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50 minutes ago, saevel25 said:

I wonder how often this happens. Do people really get that stressed over a golf shot? Is it really that common? Do people just use it as an excuse?  

Does adrenaline influence your physical effort? You bet. That's what it is does by design AFAIK. 

Is it an excuse? I guess it could be. I know of people who blame their mother in laws for a duffed chip. 

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2 minutes ago, GolfLug said:

adrenaline

Serving up the "in-my-experience" qualifier straight away, but is it really adrenaline versus a lack there of?

When I smoke a second shot, I'm usually in a full-fledged rage. The difference is that I don't really care where it goes, so I just bust it as hard as I can.

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Sometimes I do this when I start thinking too much about the shot. Get too much inside my own head, whether I am psyching myself out because its an important shot, or  not committed to the shot. Hit a bad one, then drop one that doesn't matter at all, hit it flush. That definitely happens, but I think more often I hit a bad one but I could *feel* something I did wrong in the swing, drop another one with a minor tweak, and flush it. But besides both of those, there are still plenty of times I hit a bad one, drop it, hit another identical bad shot LOL

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24 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

Serving up the "in-my-experience" qualifier straight away, but is it really adrenaline versus a lack there of?

When I smoke a second shot, I'm usually in a full-fledged rage. The difference is that I don't really care where it goes, so I just bust it as hard as I can.

Lol... IDK.

There is no way to generalize why 2nd shots tend to be better or really, just different.  

Mostly if you hit a shot, good or bad and follow up with another within a minute or so I guess, it can be better (not necessarily great). Why? Maybe because the body remembers/self corrects. 

Either way, I am sure there are plenty of BAD 2nd shots to go with the good ones to not have a lot of conviction in any one reason. Just opinions.   

 

 

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4 minutes ago, GolfLug said:

Mostly if you hit a shot, good or bad and follow up with another within a minute or so I guess, it can be better (not necessarily great). Why? Maybe because the body remembers/self corrects. 

Either way, I am sure there are plenty of BAD 2nd shots to go with the good ones to not have a lot of conviction in any one reason. Just opinions.   

Sure.

I do agree with the calibrating-effect idea. 

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On 7/12/2018 at 1:15 AM, Patch said:

I do all my "swing thinking" at the practice range. A poor shot during practice means more to me than hitting a poor shot when playing. 

When on the course for a score, all I really think about is club selection, and where I want the ball to go. After those two decisions have been made, I just address the ball, and hit it. The shot either goes as planned, or it doesn't. 

I think that alot of times golfers let their brains get in their way. Over thinking has caused many a bad shot. 

As for being relaxed during a round, I am out there to have fun, and get some exercise. Golf is not my job, and I don't really care how I play. If I play well, that's a good thing. If I play poorly, well, that's not a bad thing either. It's just a fun challenge for me. It's just my 80+/- swings against the course's 18 hole layout. 

Most amateurs pay to play this game. Why would anyone pay to do something that can cause them undue pressure/grief when they don't have to? Just hit the ball, go find it, and hit it again. How simple is that based on the golfer's talent level?

My buddy "tin cups" it all the time. I ask him what good it does, since the object of the game is to do it right the first time!

I'm with you, Patch. The only time I have "swing thoughts" is when I'm working on something at the range. When I'm playing and trying to make a score, I switch to what I call "shot thoughts".

In my mind I see the shot I want to hit, and then try to hit it. Sometimes it happens, other times it doesn't. If it doesn't, all I have is my next chance to hit a decent shot. It makes no sense to dwell on the past.

It also seems to help me if I pick a "hard target"  for every shot. Harvey Penick called it "taking dead aim". I suppose golfers today would call it "committing to the shot". 

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On 7/15/2018 at 8:07 PM, iacas said:

Oh boy.

I understand what you mean.  It is your swing.  Let me clarify by saying that, at least for me, the pressure causes tension which leads to bad shots.  Where does that pressure come from?  My mental side.  That is what I meant to say.

On 7/16/2018 at 12:36 PM, saevel25 said:

I wonder how often this happens. Do people really get that stressed over a golf shot? Is it really that common? Do people just use it as an excuse?  

When I am playing with strangers as a walk-on single, no.  There is no pressure as I couldn't care less what they think about my game.  For the most part, I score very well during these rounds.

When I have a bet going, and as presses come during the later stages of the round, my swing is not the same due to pressure.

On 7/16/2018 at 1:33 PM, GolfLug said:

Does adrenaline influence your physical effort? You bet. That's what it is does by design AFAIK. 

Is it an excuse? I guess it could be. I know of people who blame their mother in laws for a duffed chip. 

Adrenaline does effect physical ability.  You see that on pros as well when they have to use a lesser club when they are within a striking distance of winning a tournament.  Adrenaline in that case makes them stronger or swing faster.

For weekend duffers like us, IMHO adrenaline has the effect of causing muscle tension leading to bad golf swings.

On 7/16/2018 at 1:40 PM, mcanadiens said:

Serving up the "in-my-experience" qualifier straight away, but is it really adrenaline versus a lack there of?

When I smoke a second shot, I'm usually in a full-fledged rage. The difference is that I don't really care where it goes, so I just bust it as hard as I can.

In this case, it seems more like it is more due to a "free" swing versus a "tense" swing.

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