Archives for posts with tag: USGA

In the Zone in Manchester!

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David Tingey & Gary Boyes – The Mind Factor Workshop 2015

We recently had the opportunity to spend three days, enhancing our knowledge of and taking a new angle, sometimes, on the power of the mind.  The fact that the course was delivered by The Mind Factor and Dr. Karl Morris with a huge emphasis on the ‘Golfing Mind’, then we knew we’d benefit and enjoy!

We first met Karl a few years ago at Bishop’s Stortford Golf Club when he was delivering a short Mindfactor Session to the members.  Naturally, being a scholar of all things that go on in the mind, we wanted to learn even more and the weekend in Manchester seemed an ideal opportunity!  As with everything, if you are in control of your mind, you stay calm in pressure moments, or of course in decision making opportunities, where the outcomes may have serious consequences.  Now some would say there are no ‘serious consequences’ when you play golf, certainly at an amateur level, but take this a step further… how good could it be to control your mind in all aspects of your life, both in business and in your personal life?

Friday morning started early, with a train into London at just after 5.00am, a seamless tube ride to Euston, and then the 6.36am Virgin Train to Manchester Piccadilly saw myself and colleague, David Tingey, a PGA Professional, arrive in Manchester just before 9.00am.  Whilst we’ve flown Virgin Atlantic, it was the first time we’d used the services of Virgin for rail services, and what a joy!  2 hours 20 minutes of comfort, without having to concentrate on the roads (and potentially taking twice as long)!  Next time we’re Manchester bound, it’ll be Virgin Trains all the way!

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Gary Boyes, Chris Walton, Karl Morris, David Tingey

We checked into The Radisson Blu, in the centre of Manchester, where the course was to be held, and settled down for three great days of realising just how awesome the mind is, in EVERYTHING we do.

When you think back, it’s incredible to recount the number of times teams and individuals have progressed to be successful by having the belief in their ability and remaining calm under pressure.  As many of you will know, it can be so easy to have many thoughts coming into your head at the same time, especially in the field of golf… head down, swing through the ball, knees flexed… Is it any wonder we have the potential to hit a poor shot? Take that a step further; Is it a surprise to anyone that we sometimes turn up for work, mind overflowing with thoughts, ideas and ‘things that we need to remember’, and then have a poor outcome? How much of that information, at that moment in time, and the ATTENTION that we devote to it, is either ‘useful’ or ‘useless’?! And that set the tone for Day one, and in fact the whole workshop… Decide what is useful, or useless… and deal with it accordingly. Something useless at one moment, could become useful at a later stage, and vice versa… but forget the before and the after, we’re talking about the NOW! Stay in the present moment, give it your full ATTENTION.

 

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Philip Zimbardo – What ‘Time Zone’ is your mind travelling in?

Habitual time zones was an interesting concept, with our phenomenal mind being able to race, at the slightest thought to something previous in our lives or fast forward to something that we ‘imagined’ might happen.  Philip Zimbardo, the American Psychologist, carried out numerous studies to demonstrate this, over a period of many years.  Whenever we need to stay in the present moment, it’s about selecting the time-zone ‘Present Absorbed’!

An interesting session followed by Guest Speaker, Chris Walton, introducing the work he has carried out on the Gamma Mindset.  Our brainwaves go through various stages, dependent upon what we are doing, from a state of high alert to resting and to sleep.  Intriguing stuff from Chris and should you want to know more, check out www.GammaMindset.com

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Gary Nicol & Gary Boyes

Day two continued with the same momentum, and a look at belief systems and possibly, more importantly, how you could change those beliefs? We had another Guest Speaker, Gary Nicol, who spent 16 years as a coach on the European Tour and is now based at Archerfield Links in North Berwick.  Gary recalled many stories, working with touring Pro’s and brought his philosophy of ‘simplicity’ to everyone.  Demonstrating his belief that ‘impact’ was the crucial area of a golf swing, how you got there, i.e. Back swing & follow through, was largely irrelevant, as long as the impact was sound.  Of course, if someone’s back-swing affected the impact, then it will need adjusting, but to him, it was a case of ‘cause and effect’ and simply coaching that.  Keeping it simple, HAS to be the best way to stay in the moment.  For more information on this and the work that Gary now undertakes, go to www.tpegs.com

We particularly enjoyed the session that covered ‘perception’.  The Cambridge Dictionary defines perception as ‘a belief or opinion, often held by many people and based on how things seem’, which means how we interpret information on a personal level.  (I recall recently asking someone with a fear of flying what they saw when I showed them a picture of a Boeing 747.  Now, I enjoy flying, and I see planes as a means of travel to a nice place! There answer? They saw a ‘metal coffin’!  Based purely on how that information was received in their own head, that was their perception).  Again, the work that we did about changing perception was time well-spent.

Day three looked at the four quadrants of golf, BEFORE, DURING, IN BETWEEN and AFTER and how each quadrant had an impact on the next.  This again, can be directly correlated to business.  Active Visualisation and creating strong neural pathways formed the bulk of the morning, with our final Guest Speaker, Dave O’Sullivan giving us some fascinating and cutting-edge insights into his work around breathing.  As we know, if your breathing is controlled and calm, then so too is the mind. Dave has been involved as the head physiotherapist for Huddersfield Giants Rugby League team and has been instrumental in their recent success.  For more information, www.physiohuddersfield.co.uk

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Two key points for us, coming from the workshop, can be summed up in two words! ATTENTION and PROCESS.  Whatever you are doing, be it personal life, sporting activity or business, you must FOCUS on and give it your full ATTENTION.  With regard to PROCESS… Well if you focus on the PROCESS, and ensure your process is right… then the outcome will be as PLANNED.  We’ll be looking at these two important areas in a future blog, so make sure you don’t miss out and sign up NOW.

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Making new friends is always important! 

As with many enjoyable workshops, you wonder how the time seems to go so fast, but as all good things come to an end, in order for the next one to start.  We were back on the train to London, tired but with an abundance of knowledge and skill, not forgetting belief, that we will start to put into our golfing as well as our business lives.  As with many external courses, you find yourself making great friends with people of all ages and all walks of life, that I know will be a USEFUL resource in the future.  Thanks for making our three days so enjoyable and a huge thanks to Karl, Nadine and the guest speakers.

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Who has the right MIND to win the 144th Open Championship?

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So, who will win the 144th Open Championship?  Ordinarily, on a Sunday evening, the Champion would have been crowned and, many photographs later, no doubt be in the bar, celebrating their win… but not this year!  Due to a rain delay, followed by a severe wind delay which wrote off most of the third day, the 2015 Championship will be decided, for only the second time, on a Monday.

It’s interesting (and pleasing) to note, going into the final round there is a three way tie for the lead, with one of those, Paul Dunne, an amateur.  I’m sure his eye will be on the trophy, though any cash prize will go to the second placed person, should he win!  The top three only lead by a single shot, with Current Masters and US Open Champion, Jordan Spieth in 4th place, two-times Open Champion Padraig Harrington in 5th place and a further 9 players, tied in 6th place, just three shots off the lead.  When you consider that Paul Lawrie, in 1999 won The Open from 10 strokes behind on the final day, you could be looking at 70 players having a chance.

What will make the difference?

Without any doubt, these guys can play! Technically, they are magicians with the ball, seemingly able to control the ball, hit high balls, low balls, balls that move left to right, right to left, depending on the shape of the hole and position of the flag… so will it come down to just getting lucky on the day?  Well, we all need a little luck, but as I’ve said many times previously, you tend to put yourself in position to make your own luck in this world.

Once you can play golf, as with many sports, it is mental strength that often defines your success.  The player that truly believes he can win, is focussed on the win and can actually visualise himself lifting the Claret Jug will be the person that wins.  There will be some that start to doubt themselves, not committing fully to the shot, not trusting their own ability… they will be the runners up.

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Jason Day, Joint 3rd Round Leader

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Louis Oosthuizen, joint 3rd Round Leader

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Paul Dunne (A), joint 3rd Round Leader

So who would you put money on?  Paul Dunne, the Amateur from Ireland played a blistering third round and has only good memories… a surprise contender, he looks calm and confident in his ability.  Louis Oosthuizen, an Open winner in 2010, again, knows how to get past the finish line but when he won five years ago, he had a reasonable lead going into the final round.  Jason Day, the Australian, is surely due a major win, having been runner up in several previous Majors, although that could work against him, if he believes he will only be a runner up.

Jordan Spieth just HAS to be a favourite, going for the Grand Slam of Majors and only a fool would bet against him.  His mental strength to cope with the pressure has been proven in both of this years earlier competitions.  As an outsider, Padraig Harrington knows how to win, yet having been out of the limelight for a good few years, perhaps a third Claret Jug is a bridge too far?

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Jordan Spieth, Great mental strength has captured him The Masters 2015 and the US Open 2015.

Dustin Johnson, leader of the first and second round saw himself fall to five shots off the lead, with three bogey’s over the final three holes of the third round.  Dustin has been very close in a number of Major’s, yet, has made sloppy mistakes and seems fragile and unable to finish off the job, a true sign that he doesn’t have the mental strength.  I believe he deserves a Championship and will achieve it one day, but I doubt 2015 is his year.

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Dustin Johnson, a fantastic player with the ability to boom drives down the fairway.. but maybe lacking in mental strength for him to finish the job?

With technical ability not in question, who do I expect to win?

Jordan Spieth would be my tip, with a close second, Louis Oosthuizen and Paul Dunne.  Watch out for Justin Rose, as an outside bet though.. a technically gifted player and one that has proven mental strength.  One thing I am sure…. this Open Championship will go to a play-off!

For more information and workshops that can increase your OWN mental strength, either in sport, work or personal life, DO drop us a line!