High Performance Mental Training
Over the past 15 years, the term “high performance training” has become a common buzz word in the world of sports training. You may possibly associate it with the Olympic arena. The good thing for us is golf is progressively moving that direction and becoming more of a high performance sport for youth as well as the professional athletes.
One of the components that is consistently missing in golf teaching, training and coaching is high performance mental training. I haven’t seen many – if any – teachers going that direction. The majority of their emphasis is purely on the technical part of the game, as they fail to integrate mental training as they work with their athletes.
We all have heard the question, “How much of the game is mental?” You will hear answers anywhere from 50 – 90 percent. But it’s never implemented into the technical aspect from the teacher to the student remotely close to that proportion. Instead, it’s an afterthought once they begin to play the game. They dabble in it and associate themselves with sports psychologists, but never adopt and fully integrate a proven system into their own training.
I do think some great golf and mental coaches are trying to partner their strategies, but there is still a huge disconnect because they’re not truly on the same page. The mental coach isn’t fully aware of what the golf teacher is working on with their students and vice versa.
The true void lies in the golf teacher not being able to reinforce as well as teach, train and coach the concepts of a high performance mental training system. Their downfall exists in not truly understanding why their students can have a great front nine and a disastrous back nine, why they can’t finish off an event strongly, or put two consistent back-to-back rounds together. We could volley examples back and forth, but the common denominator is this: why are students not consistent?
The answer lies in something hardly addressed and/or taught: the self-image. This represents what you are likely to do in a situation. Out of all the research I’ve done the last 15 years, I’ve found only one system that addresses the idea and importance of how to build, protect and grow the self-image.
We built our Academy on the technical aspects of the game, and for the last 10 years we’ve done extremely well. But I always knew I was missing the mental training aspect and could never truly find a high performance system that was designed to fit into our training structure, solving the riddle for consistency.
That is, until I met Lanny Bassham, founder and creator of Mental Management Systems. For the past five years I’ve worked side-by-side with Lanny, learning, teaching, training and coaching his Mental Management System. The Shawn Humphries Youth Golf Academy became the first in the world of golf to integrate MMS. In that time frame, I became the first golf coach in the world to be certified by Lanny as an MMS coach.
It’s been a game changer for us and the Academy. We have won more than 1,400 events, and 100 percent of our graduating seniors have been offered golf scholarships.