Martin Kaymer gave a very interesting interview after the recent Abu Dhabi championship on the European Tour.
Regarded as one of golfs best front runners he held a 10 shot lead early in the fourth round and at that point was rated as a 500/1 on bet to win by the bookmakers.
However at this point his game fell apart and he dropped 6 shots over the closing holes eventually finishing 2 shots behind the winner Frenchman Gary Stal.
While obviously disappointed about losing he stunned the worlds press by stating he was glad he blew the lead as he thought in the long run the loss would be good for his game. He reckoned that he hadn’t coped well with the pressure and some of the things that happened during the last round and stated that he intended to learn from his mistakes and come back stronger in the future.
The ability to learn something from even our poor rounds is a key skill that the best players have. Kaymer talked about sitting down with his father and brother after the round and asking himself questions that made him feel uncomfortable.
Every player no matter what level they play at will have times when their games break down and they become unsure about what to do next. These decisions we make at crucial times in our golfing lives can determine how good a player we will be in the future. Here are some tips to help you make better decisions with your own game.
1/ It might not be the swing.
Good scores are a mixture of the technical, tactical, mental and physical skills you bring to the course. Sometimes changing your swing is the wrong decision. Interestingly Kaymer seemed to be pointing towards a weakness in his mental game.
2/ Keep some stats.
The score doesn’t tell us the full story. Keep a note of your fairways and greens hit, putts and up and downs. You need to know which are your weakest areas.
3/ Cut out the negative emotion.
After making a mistake players often react instinctively showing anger or negative emotion. When we become angry we lose awareness and our decisions become poor. Annika Sorenstam talked about not being allowed to react with negative emotion after a bad shot when training with the Swedish team as an amateur.
4/ Speak with people whose opinions you trust.
It was interesting that Kaymer sat down with his father and brother the evening after his collapse in Abu Dhabi. Everyone will give you an opinion about what you need to do. Successful players are very selective about who they take advice from with regard to making changes in their games.
5/ Set a time limit for improvement.
I am a great believer that if you are working on the correct things in your game then you should see some improvement within a relatively short period. If you are making a change and after say a month you are still performing poorly or even worse then you might want to give some consideration to the direction you are heading.
If you are unsure about the direction your game is heading and would like some advice feel free to contact me thorough my website.