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Play the Percentages and Lower Your Score!
Recently, I was asked; "What are my thoughts on making long putts? The golfer who asked is preparing to play and win on the PGA tour. He was struggling trying to make 30-foot putts during a round of golf and was coming up short.

As for 30-foot putts or any putt, don't be afraid to hit it past the hole. A short putt never has a chance to go in! It is hard for a golfer to admit that he will play only as good in a tournament as he plays in practice. Many golfers expect to be able to perform better when the chips are down than they can do while practicing their mechanics. It is not going to happen. So don't kid yourself.

So if you are serious about getting better, start practicing 30-foot putts with 10 putts from the north, 10 from the south, 10 from the east and 10 from the west. Find out what your success percentage is in practice and realize that is what your success percentage will be in a tournament.

So worrying about sinking a 30-foot putt in a tournament is silly because it is not going to happen 100% of the time - unless you can do it 40 times in a row in practice. So don't every worry about any particular putt, chip or any other shot.

Just stay in the process and let the percentages take care of themselves. To improve your score, keep practicing your mechanics in order to get your success percentages to a higher level. Don't let your concern for the outcome upset your emotions and lower your success percentages.

If you are not familiar with my mental tips, realize that your emotions affect your brain's chemistry and performance. By staying in the process or present, you can not be concerned with the outcome which opens you up to the emotions of fear and anger, which upset your chemistry and performance.

I want you to be aware of a mental trap, many golfers fall into. When you expect a certain level of play and watch the score (outcome) to see how you are doing, you open yourself to trouble. If you make a couple of bad shots in a row or are still at par after hitting the greens nine times in a row in regulation, you may start to doubt yourself or get upset. This will throw off your chemistry and performance.

Train your mind not to worry about the outcome because the PERCENTAGES will always even out over time if you keep everything consistent. Las Vegas has this down to a science. With the percentages in their favor, they win day after day - even if someone gets lucky once in a while and wins the jackpot.

All you have to do is to keep improving your success percentages in practice and let your opponents worry about winning or losing.

© Copyright 2002 by Michael Anthony.  All rights reserved