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Establishing the Rhythm

“You won’t win a golf tournament on Thursdays. But you can lose it on Thursdays. Therefore, the first three holes are not about score. They are about establishing the rhythm of your routine with a conservative strategy.”  

This quote is from “Golf Flow” and was sent to me by Jeff Wolfe.

Have you ever paid that much attention to getting your physical and mental processes in sync with each other when beginning the day of the tournament? How about keeping them in sync through the first few stations? As I look back on my performances, slowing down at the beginning or not has allowed me to have a zone experience or not.

There are a lot of emotions that come into play at the first station. But if you are in sync when arriving, you have a much better chance of not speeding up and losing it. I’ve been thinking about this a lot and it’s true at so many levels.

I remember talking to a pro fisherman about his thought process. “First thing you must admit to yourself is that they are not going to start biting until you get there,” he said. “Slow down and make every cast count.”

When you speed up, you’re reacting. And when you slow down and get in sync, you begin to have the ability to anticipate. That is the circuit in the brain we want to be in control of the shot.  Again, it comes back to the difference in reacting and anticipating, and controlling the fear emotion. This is why “same speed at the end” is so lethal.

Pulling the trigger when you mount is a reaction that quite often is speeding up. Stabilizing the shot is the finishing of the shot that keeps the muzzle from speeding up. In fact, it’s a continuation of the synchronization of the shot and your natural rhythm.

When the shot is in sync and you are in sync, you are in the zone. Stabilizing the shot allows the zone to get even deeper and deeper as you progress through the round and the days of the tournament. Staying in rhythm on and off the course is essential. The rhythm of the shot allows me to step into the box and hit the target with my head off the stock – without fear!