Archive for Karl Morris

I’ve been thinking about the application of golf psychology to the issue of the swing thought. In other words, what do you and should you be thinking about when you actually swing the club. It seems that every time I watch someone play they seem to be taking an inordinate amount of time fidgeting with their grip, their stance or their play. The more time they take to get round to swinging the club, the more likely they are to hit a bad shot. One golfer I met recently admitted to almost running between shots so that he has adequate time available to fidget over the ball.

The average golfer is often preoccupied with his current set of – sometimes conflicting – technical swing thoughts, from coaches, books, websites and golf magazines and TV programmes. And even if he isn’t, someone may have given him a set of the tee pegs I saw recently that had different swing thoughts printed on each one!

Now to be absolutely clear, I do believe that you should take adequate time to consciously plan your shots before stepping up to the ball and taking your stance. And this should include time to fully visualise and rehearse the shot or putt that you are about to make. I’ve written before about Jack Nicklaus describing how he’s never hit a shot without first seeing himself playing it …
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Putting was clearly very difficult for all the players at Hazeltine in the 2009 PGA Championship, especially in terms of putting psychology. Now we all saw Tiger Woods missing a lot of mid-range putts that we’d normally expect him to see and I’ve already written about how those were the result of his uneasiness about the swirling wind. I’m more concerned here with a number of really crucial putts missed by Lee Westwood and the massive number of short putts missed by Vijay Singh.

In my humble opinion, Lee Westwood is striking the ball as well as he ever has, especially in the major championships. As a result, he keeps getting himself into contention in the last round before throwing away the opportunity in the last nine holes on Sunday. How many times did he miss apparently easy putts at Hazeltine, including a three putt from not much more than 3 feet? At the Open Championship we saw him three-putt the 72nd hole after recovering well from a few bad putts earlier in the round. The same sort of thing has plagued him for such a long time that it can’t just be coincidence and I keep reading about Lee working with golf psychologists, so it can’t be that; or can it?

Well, I’ve seen Lee’s name mentioned as a client of a number of high-profile golf psychologists here in the UK, like Dr Karl Morris and Jamil Qureshi, the official psychological performance coach for the European Ryder Cup team last year. I also noticed, in the Westwood Academy page on Lee’s website, that the list of sessions participants will receive includes psychology.

Imagine my surprise when I heard about Lee’s comments about golf psychologists in an interview at Hazeltine. "Look at them all," he said, "They all look a bit odd …
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In parts one and two, I talked about the golf psychology lessons from the performance of veteran Tom Watson and young Ross Fisher at this year’s Open Championship at Turnberry. As a 59 year old myself, I was overwhelmed by Tom’s amazing performance and mental strength around one of the toughest links courses. It almost seems unnecessary to mention his age and recent hip replacement operation. As a golf psychologist helping clients to play the best golf they possibly can, whatever happens, I couldn’t fail to be impressed with Ross’s calm ability to shrug off the disappointment of that quadruple bogey and play on like the consummate professional he has become.

So what’s left to comment on and learn from this year’s Open Championship at Turnberry? Well, I started to talk about Tiger Woods in part 2, but put that on hold so that I wouldn’t detract from the praise I wanted to lavish on Ross Fisher. I also feel that there’s a lot to learn from Lee Westwood’s sad failure over the last few holes, as he was playing as well as we all know he can and probably better than the other leading contender …
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Back in the late 90s and early in the twenty-first century, when I started getting really interested in golf psychology, it seemed that the question everyone was asking was, “Who is Jos Vanstiphout?” At the 2002 Open at Muirfield, he was sharing his talents with both players in the play-off, Ernie Els and Thomas Levet. He was reported as having other irons in the fire that week, with clients including Retief Goosen, Soren Hansen, Sergio Garcia, Michael Campbell and Darren Clarke and quite a few others. As a betting man, he had good odds of backing a winner.

So, what exactly did Jos do for his clients? Well, they gave him lots of credit for their success – Retief Goosen handing him much of the credit for his US Open Win at Southern Hills in 2001. But what was he actually doing with his clients to help them …
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Yesterday, in Part 1 of this article, I tackled the first 5 of someone’s web-based list of the top ten mental mistakes golfers make and how to correct them instantly.  Today I tackle the last 5 and as I disagree with much of his “how to correct them instantly “advice, I’ve again included my suggestions as to how address them with NLP and Golf Hypnosis …
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I’m just re-reading Timothy Gallwey’s The Inner Game of Golf again after almost 25 years! It’s fascinating and given my training in Hypnosis and NLP, I now see why it didn’t work for me when I first worked with it. That insight may also help to explain that despite the plethora of tennis coaches teaching Inner Game techniques, there seem to be very few PGA Professionals claiming to teach. I know that’s asking for a big bag of emails from the ones who do – I’d like to know who they are.

Now, when I first started playing golf, like most beginners, I focussed all my attention on developing my golf swing. I was lucky to start out with a good swing teacher in Colin Christison, who hailed from …
Blairgowrie and learned his golf on the picturesque Rosemount Course. He instilled many of the basics and taught me to play well enough to get down to 4 handicap in my first year and to play off 2 handicap for the next decade or so. Colin also took me with him to caddy or just watch from inside the ropes when he went to play tournaments. I remember watching him play in the Agfa Tournament at Stoke Poges with the legendary Dave Thomas, one of the UK’s foremost golfers in the 1950’s and 1960’s winning many European tournaments and later designing the Brabazon, Derby and PGA National courses at The Belfry and many others . Dave tied for the 1958 British Open at Royal Lytham St Anne’s, losing to the legendary Peter Thomson in the playoff. He also finished second to Jack Nicklaus at Muirfield in 1966 and played in four Ryder Cups. The other member of their threeball was Ian Connelly who later taught Nick Faldo when he started out in golf at Welwyn Garden City. Some experience for an 18 year old playing off 4 handicap Click here to read the full post »

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Giving my clients homework tasks to improve their golf and get the most effective results from golf hypnosis sessions is one of the keys to my success. It’s also something that I use to good effect with my clinical hypnotherapy clients as well. Homework can also be used very effectively with golf hypnosis recordings and with self-assigned tasks for self-hypnosis as well.

So what do I mean by Golf Hypnosis Homework

Well don’t worry; it’s not like going back to school. This homework is often just a task that changes your routine or increases your awareness of something you do …
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