THE QATSPY GOLFER’S SPORT PAGE
By: Charles W. Boatright
Golfer’s ASPEN Self-Coaching Technique Using Sports Psychology- To Deal with Golfer’s Anxiety
One of the key objectives for developing the golfer’s Sports Psychology is allowing the golfer to deal with their anxiety with a self-coaching technique. The first tee box usually offers the golfer the most tense period of time in the entire round of golf. Tension is the one of the most common conditions that rob the golfer of power, speed, and control. Even lower handicap (e.g., scratch) golfers are forced to deal with anxiety, muscle tension, and lack of trust in their golf game, as well as other distractions from time to time.
There are easy Sports Psychology techniques that can allow the golfer to deal with their anxiety and tension by relaxing their mind. Relaxation techniques allow the golfer’s mind to focus on their golf swing sequence and routine, rather than on other distractions. Ninety percent of all issues that the golfer will have to encounter or deal with will be between their ears. One Sports Psychology technique enables the golfer to relax and learn to trust their golf swing sequence and routine, based on muscle memory. This muscle memory is what most golfers have already developed over a period of years, if not decades. Even if the golfer just started playing golf recently, this muscle memory already exists.
This Self-Coaching Technique that the golfer can use during their practice sessions is called Apperception. Apperception is a self-coaching technique where the golfer can take a very well-developed skill from one sport, e.g., the baseball-style swing, to develop motor skills and mechanics for their golf swing sequence. One major advantage for doing this is that the baseball-style swing was developed at a very early age, in most cases as a preteen. This allows the golfer to take advantage of a previously well-developed motor skill that is entrenched and that is natural.
Apperception forms the basis of a Self-Coaching Technique that is called ASPEN (Apperception, Sync, Preset, ESP, and Neuromuscular). The ASPEN Self-Coaching Technique was developed in 1927 by H.Q. Boatright, my grandfather, to assist in coaching the fundamentals of golf to young golfers of all ages. The ASPEN Self-Coaching Technique forms a Pyramid in the Figure below. This Figure provides a brief description of each step in The ASPEN Self-Coaching Technique:
FISC, a Self-Coaching Technique Used on the Golf Course to Improve Your Golf Game, to Lower Your Handicap and Frustration
Once on the golf course, the golfer finds the execution of The ASPEN Self-Coaching Technique a natural reaction, without having to think. The best way to achieve this is to Focus on the ball or target, Isolate yourself from your surroundings, Synchronize the body with the mind, and just Concentrate on your natural routine.
FISC was an ancient term referring to the public treasury of Rome, or the emperor’s privy purse. Acronyms like FISC and ASPEN Self-Coaching Technique are great Sports Psychology tactics allowing the golfer to perform their golf swing routine without thinking about their golf swing routine on the golf course.
Golfer’s swing thoughts are the worst thing the golfer wants to happen. Swing thoughts can lead to overthinking, causing doubt, anxiety, and lack of trust in the golf swing mechanics and routine. If there is one area that can affect both professional and amateur golfers equally, it is developing and maintaining their trust in their golf swing routine. The whole point of both the FISC and ASPEN Self-Coaching Techniques is to help the golfer IMPROVE and ENJOY their golf game. Golf should relieve frustration, not be the source of their frustration.
Athletes describe the ability to Focus, Isolate, Synchronize, and Concentrate (FISC) as being in a mental ZONE, or in the moment. The golfer who has the ability to eliminate self-doubt, distractions, and can slow down their perception of time can focus on their routine, by being relaxed and confident. The golfer’s perception of time provides the golfer with a higher degree of focus. Focusing provides the golfer with a tremendous advantage to isolate and concentrate on their muscle memory and routine. To make the self-coaching technique effective, the self-coaching technique should not consist of more than three (3) Maneuvers, including the drop maneuver to start the downswing.
Sports Psychology Technique of ExtraSensory Performance ESP
The closest experience that I can describe the FISC Sports Psychology Technique to what the golfer experiences is something that we all have experienced from time to time called ExtraSensory Performance, while driving a vehicle. The ExtraSensory Performance is also commonly known as Driving Hypnosis. What occurs in ExtraSensory Performance is that our subconscious mind takes over the majority of the driving duties for short periods of time.
The ExtraSensory Performance can occur during a leisurely scenic drive along highways, where there is little to no interaction or distractions. In this condition, the driver’s mind is relaxed and comfortable, due to a well-established muscle memory and routine where the driver doesn’t remember driving past certain landmarks or stretches of road. This usually occurs when a driver’s conscious mind focuses on something other than driving for short periods of time, where everything else becomes a blur.
While ExtraSensory Performance is an unsafe condition for driving a vehicle down the highway, it works great for driving golf balls down the fairway. In golf, this ExtraSensory Performance allows the golfer to ZONE IN. In this state of mind, your subconscious mind takes over the majority of your driving responsibilities, which are well-established routines. This routine forms an instinctive muscle memory, or subconscious response. This is similar to learning how to drive a manual transmission. During the learning experience, shifting becomes a subconscious response. We don’t think about the coordination of the accelerator, brake, and clutch work; this is a natural autopilot response!
The golfer can use a similar technique, like ExtraSensory Performance, to develop a muscle memory routine for golf. To get into a mental zone, the golfer can apply the FISC Technique to:
FOCUS on one objective, like the ball or target area. Visualization is essential to develop an instinctive muscle memory routine. The golfer can develop muscle memory through The 405 Training Drill method, which is similar to a football scrimmage game. Under this scrimmage-type of practice, the golfer’s mind does not distinguish between practice and playing conditions. The golfer, using the ASPEN Self-Coaching Technique, develops a dependable routine based on muscle memory, which has a 90 percent retention rate.
ISOLATE on visual maneuvers to eliminate distractions from thinking. This promotes muscle memory routine. This eliminates swing thoughts. I isolate on just two visual maneuvers, using a pinball machine Flipper and the wristband on a boxing glove, illustrated in the Flipper and Boxing Glove Figure below. With visualization, the subconscious mind functions at its highest capacity using our five senses, or, in this case, mentalization. Mentalization in a conjunction of Mental and Visualization. This Isolation eliminates swing thoughts, the killer of your golf game.
For the right-handed golfer: The pinball Flipper is the golfer’s left Hypothenar, and the right wristband is the golfer’s right lower forearm.
SYNCHRONIZE component provides the golfer with the ability to synchronize their body, which is 10 percent of their golf swing, with their mind representing the other 90 percent of their golf swing. A great method to use to help synchronize the golfer’s body with their mind is the Sync/Preset maneuver in the ESPY Golf Swing sequence. This was a technique that David Duval demonstrated to Charlie Rymer during an interview on Golf Channel. Charlie Rymer was so impressed with David Duval’s golf swing preset maneuver that he dubbed it That Wrist Thing. The significance about the Sync/Preset maneuver is that it completes 80 percent of the golfer’s complete swing.
That Wrist Thing that Charlie Rymer referred to is the Sync/Preset maneuver in the ESPY Golf Swing sequence. This Sync/Preset provides the golfer with a tremendous amount of confidence in their golf game. Completing the Sync/Preset maneuver places the handle of the club, hands/wrists, and lower forearms into the Lock Position, shown in the Figure below:
CONCENTRATE on one point of contact, like the golf ball, and an area about 9-inches in front on the ball on the ground along the target line. This will help eliminate swing thoughts, distractions, and allow the golfer to synchronize their body with their mind. A great mental image to accomplish this is to use as an INITIATION/OFF switch that is on most modern-day appliances, like your computer, shown in the RED ZONE Figure below. The circle, symbol for OFF, is the zone around your golf ball, while the line, symbol for INITIATION, is your 9-inch target line. This concentration will eliminate swing thoughts. Swing thoughts are like a mirage; they seem real at a distance, during practice time, but are mere figments under playing conditions.
The golfer using the FISC can mentally Focus, Isolate, Synchronize, and Concentrate on their muscle memory. The ESPY Golf Swing Coach provides the golfer with a tremendous relaxation technique in order to develop golf swing mechanics and techniques for a consistent golf swing.
The keys to the Self-Coaching Technique are to synchronize the body with the mind by FIRST- using the baseball-style golf swing to capitalize on a motor skill developed at an early age, usually preteen. SECOND- use visual aids, like the boxing glove wristbands and pinball flipper to initiate the golf swing sequence. THIRD- use the ten-speed bicycle sprocket to help the golfer visualize how their elbows and shoulders synchronize in the TAKEAWAY, where the small gear, elbows, turns the large gear, shoulders, for POWER. Then, in the DOWNSWING sequence, the large gear, shoulders, turns the small gear, elbows, for SPEED.
If the golfer develops the correct visualization and muscle memory, the golfer will experience more consistent golf swings with power, acceleration, control, and speed. I don’t know too many golfers who would pass up an opportunity to gain more distance and control in their golf swing. Purchase your copy of The ESPY Golf Swing Coach from the links below, or visit your local bookstore:
My book can also be purchased at Edwin Watts Golf Store in Jackson, Mississippi. Phone No. 601-956-8784
820 East County Line Road, Ridgeland, MS 39157
My book can also be purchased on-line at:
Health and Fitness Program Golf Exercise for Power
This book is based on a self-coaching forum (ASPEN Pyramid) that provides the beginner and advanced single-digit handicap golfer with a safe, ergonomic classic golf swing for more power and control, without debilitating injuries that are common with some modern-day golf swings. As part of the ESPY Golf Swing Coach is a workout program designed especially for golfers and an effective diet program detailed below.
Please take advantage of my SR-925 Diet Program, where I lost 6 inches in my waist in 3- months (FREE of CHARGE) with the CASPER Workout Program, detailed in Section 20 of my book, great golf swing workout:
One component in my CASPER Workout Program that I follow is using a Medicine Ball to perform what I call Stocking the Shelves, illustrated below in the figure:
Please include an exercise routine in your weekly schedule.
ESPY Golf Swing Coach- Rhythm Without the Blues
Also, learning The ESPY Golf Swing Coach process is an excellent way to develop Rhythm without experiencing the Blues in your golf game for confidence; learn how to take your baseball-style swing from the batter’s box to the tee box.
THE LOCKER ROOM a source for golf tips
Please visit “The Locker Room” for an Index of all my golf articles to improve your golf game and life. Discover how you can take your baseball swing from the batter’s box to the tee box.
Learn How to take your baseball-style golf swing from the batter’s box to the tee box.
For Comments or questions please contact me at 1-888-514-1228 Mon – Fri from 9 am to 4 pm CT Zone.
A Recommendation for your Golf Game:
I would like to recommend an interesting radio program that I regularly listen to from my home state Arkansas on my I-Heart Radio app on KARN 102.9 FM station, out of Little Rock, AR. They air a golf show called Arkansas Fairways and Greens, at 7:00 AM CT each Saturday morning, hosted by Bob Steel, and co-hosted by Jay Fox and Charles Crowson. Bob occasionally as has his guess Alex Myers with Golf Digest and Ron Sirak with Golf Channel. I was interviewed on his show about my book, The ESPY Golf Swing Coach. This show is worth tuning into for golf news and information.
Jay Fox is an Administrator with Arkansas State Golf Association that discuss amateur golf and rules of the game.
Once you learn WHY, you don’t forget HOW!
Two decisions that you can make for yourself and your kids are to get a copy of my book and place the book and a golf club into their hands. You will never look back, but only forward. You will not miss with this for yourself and/or your kids.
Until next time– Be Synched, Tee-to-Green, with The ESPY Golf Swing!