Archive for Golf Confidence

I’d like to share some wonderful news about Jamie McLeary winning his European Tour Card for the first time after competing for 7 years on the Challenge Tour. What’s extra special for me about the news is that Jamie’s been a client of mine for less than 4 months and in that time he’s moved up from number 1,028 on the Official World Golf Ranking to number 318.

What’s especially pleasing for me is that Jamie is happy to attribute his change of form to his regular use of my Winning Golf hypnosis audio programme and the Your Own Virtual Caddy recording. That’s not to take away his obvious golfing ability and hard work. You can imagine my delight when back in September he texted me a brief message, “A little something for you Andrew”, with a link to an interview he gave to the Scotsman newspaper. You can read it under the headline, “Hypnotist gets McLeary thinking straight again” at The Scotsman website.

Jamie first contacted me back at the end of June when he was on an aggregate of 5 over par for the first ten events on the Challenge Tour. We only had a couple of days to talk before he was heading off for a planned 3 weeks of tournament play in Europe. What made it more challenging was the distance, with Jamie 400 miles away in Scotland. So we were only able to talk on the phone. However, we made what turned out to be good progress and Jamie headed off to Switzerland with my Winning Golf recordings on his iPhone and stared listening to them every day.

The three week plan kept extending after Jamie tied 4th in the Swiss Challenge and then had three more top ten finishes in the next six tournaments. He was now 78 under par for his first 7 events since we started working together. That’s when he did the interview for the article in The Scotsman.

Jamie’s success in tying 2nd in the Challenge Tour Grand Final in Dubai and winning his European Tour Card has been well documented on Sky Television, the European Tour website and in the press. However, the prize for the most outrageous article title has to go to The Herald newspaper in Scotland for, “Why a man called Fogg is due a huge thank-you from Jamie McLeary“!

I’ll leave you with a quote from Jamie’s interview with The Scotsman:

“I started working with a hypnotist, Andrew Fogg, the day after I missed qualifying for the Open by a shot after leading through one round [at North Berwick]. I felt my game was good but I had far too much negative self talk going on. I now listen to the files of him talking every night while I fall asleep and wake up every day feeling great. I started feeling confident almost instantly and even when I play average I shoot a couple under. Due to this I feel great about the end of the season. I’m starting to close in on the top 15 and finishing the season off well is a plus. I also managed to secure a sponsorship deal for the next five years with Asset Assured. They’re a financial investment organisation from Aberdeen. They’ve given me the peace of mind to just go out and play golf.”

If you’d like to share in Jamie McLeary’s success with Golf Hypnosis, have a look at Winning Golf and the other programmes at my Golf Hypnotist Store website.

Have you seen the putting pre-shot routine that Darren Clarke’s using at the Open Championship this week and used to such great success in coming second in the Scottish Open last week? And did you notice how he seems to be incorporating my “Six Steps to Better Putting in Your Unconscious Mind” that I detailed in my Golf Hypnotist Ezine the other week?

Now I’m not suggesting that Darren started doing that after he or one of his support team read about it in my ezine. However, it is obviously helping to overcome some of the “demons” that seemed to be afflicting his putting confidence in recent years. The six steps and his action of gripping left hand low and then re-gripping right hand low are clearly keeping his conscious mind occupied while he’s just trusting his unconscious mind to hit the putts. It certainly seems to be working for him.

Why not give it a try? You can still read that ezine edition here and subscribe to regularly receive my free Golf Hypnotist Ezine using the box on the right hand side of this page. The new edition of the ezine comes out later today and includes the opportunity to download a free audio recording of the Finger Breathing relaxation technique I’m always talking about.

Still tied up with half-term duties, so just a quick post today to say how delighted I was last night to see Ian Baker-Finch open his return to Colonial and his return to competitive golf with a 68 – that must have taken some guts and some powerful golf-psychology work.

Now, whatever Ian does in today’s second round doesn’t matter, he’s made it back to the game he loves – and in a classy way. That said, seeing him make the cut and have a good result at the weekend will be wonderful for him, and the world of golf. I’ll be glued to the television this evening to give Ian my support.

Come on Nick Faldo; don’t let Ian beat you in the comeback stakes. We like to hear you both as commentators, but we’d much rather hear your clubs do the talking.

Have you ever heard golfers talk about losing their swing and their golf confidence during a round of golf? They were playing really quite well for a few holes and then suddenly they just seem lose it and hit a series of bad shots. Perhaps you’ve experienced this yourself. I certainly know that it’s happened to me in the past and it just felt like I was a complete beginner again.

So where does that good swing go when this happens and do we literally forget how we were swinging? Well, one thing’s for certain, we don’t lose the memory of the shot. Although you may not consciously remember them all, every shot you ever played and the muscle sequences used for those shots remain in your unconscious memory for the rest of your life. Unfortunately, so does every swing thought you’ve ever had, every golf tip you’ve ever read and every piece of golf instruction you’ve ever received.

So how do we get the good swing back …
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Yesterday was my birthday and one of the best presents I got was the news that Seve Ballesteros, one of my biggest golfing heroes, was talking positively about the future.

Seve in his prime was one of the best exponents of the game of golf and he brought a totally new meaning to the ideas of golf confidence and enjoyment when he played. Not only did he get such an obvious thrill from every one of his cavalier shots, but so did his fans and fellow competitors. His enthusiasm for the game was infectious …
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Do you play golf to win? What about when you’re having a great round, playing confident golf and you only need a few pars to play under your handicap? Some of my best rounds came when I started scoring badly and just persevered. The further I got into the round, the better I found myself scoring. What’s more, I got into the habit of playing better and better. Sometimes, the improvement grew over the space of several rounds.

When I think about this kind of phenomena, a couple of my early golfing experiences quickly spring to mind. Part way through my first year of golf, I had got my handicap down to 7 and I was playing in one of the club competitions at Brookmans Park Golf Club. Well, I started terribly and it only slowly got better. Starting from the tenth hole, I reached the turn in 48 shots, 13 over par! But by that time, my golf was improving and I was hitting the ball a long way. I started my second nine with two pars then had a run of eagle, par, eagle and I was now flying. I parred the par 3 sixth hole, before eagling the par 5 seventh and parring the eighth. I was on such a high that I really went for the par 3 ninth and birdied that to be back in 29, 7 under par and nineteen shots better than my first nine. I even had my handicap cut …
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So do you think Sean O’Hair has learned his lesson about closing out a golf tournament confidently? Well it’s tempting to say, "No, he hasn’t." There he was dropping shots on the last two, admittedly extremely difficult, holes and leaving the final result to be decided by Lucas Glover and Tiger Woods the players still out on the course. Fortunately and in many ways, he did win; with Tiger not up to making those closing birdies he’s usually making and Lucas making the same mistake on 17 as Sean was making a few minutes earlier.

I have to say that I was sitting there expecting Lucas Glover to hole his birdie putt on 18 and force a play-off. And I was expecting Sean O’Hair to win the sudden death. Now you may find that surprising given Sean’s capitulation to Tiger over the last nine holes at Bay Hill, just a couple of weeks ago …
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So who’s using hypnosis to improve their golf performance – apart from Tiger Woods and maybe Phil Mickelson? Well, taking first things first, it’s difficult to be sure who’s using hypnosis because most people who do don’t want to let on. Why’s that? Well firstly, they want to keep the competitive edge that golf hypnosis gives them to themselves. Secondly, although it’s becoming acceptable for a top golfer to admit to using a mind coach, their marketing people are still wary of saying they use golf psychology or, worse still, hypnosis – that’s all to “new age.” You only have to look at the comments of Angel Cabrera, a real man’s man, after he won the Masters, “Now I don’t have a sports psychologist and I don’t smoke.”

If a golfer won’t tell you he’s using hypnosis, then what are the signs to look for to know he or she is? Well let’s take Tiger Woods as our first example. I’ve not heard him say that he uses hypnosis or read anything that confirms that he’s admitted it. However, just watch the controlled and methodical series of blinks he makes just before stepping into every shot. If that’s not a hypnotic trigger or anchor …
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Did you see the amazing performance and golf confidence exuded by Brian Gay in the Verizon Heritage this weekend? How can anyone thread their drives and approach shots down those narrow avenues of trees at Harbour Town Golf Links at Hilton Head Island let alone consistently hit those tiny well guarded greens? We shouldn’t forget the weekend performances of Briny Baird with 133 for 9 under and my fellow member at Beaconsfield, Luke Donald, with 131 for 11 under.

At the end, I was transported back in my mind to some of my own less elevated experiences of playing on tight courses and small greens. It brought to mind how much better I play in those conditions …
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