One Week to Go: How to make the most of the tournament count down for junior golfers

Short game, short game, and more short game
This is not the time to alter your swing.  Juniors typically spend most of their tournament preparation time on the range and neglect their short game.  It’s not surprising that those who score poorly tell me their short game cracked under the pressure, while those who play well talk about making lots of putts and up and downs.  Spend more time on the chipping and putting green and less time on the range.

Focus on your strengths
Improving your weaknesses takes time and effort and isn’t something you can alter the week before the tournament.  Leave your weaknesses alone in the final week of preparation and bring more focus on your strengths.  This will help you feel confident and in control on game day.  Make the most of what you’ve got!

Focus on getting a good nights rest each night of the week before the tournament not just the night before.

Eat breakfast
Fuel is just as important as your warm-up routine for activating your brain and body the morning of the tournament.  Nervousness will reduce your appetite, but consider eating as a necessity not a preference.    

Research on junior golfers has shown that many start the tournament dehydrated.  Drink plenty of water days before not just the night before to hydrate.  Hydration keeps your muscles loose to swing freely on the first tee.

Train your brain to guide your body
Don’t cram!  You can’t prepare for a tournament like you do for exams.  Rather than overloading your body the week before tournament, practice more visualisation instead.  Train your brain to guide your body in the same way Jordan Spieth does before a tournament; visualising great shots and solid swings.

Power pose
Research shows that standing still in a “power pose” by engaging tall, strong body language with you eyes up for just 2 minutes can enhance feelings of confidence and actually reduce levels of a hormone in the body responsible for causing stress.  Amazing!  Practice your “power pose” for 2 minutes everyday before the tournament and prepare your mind and body to be less stress reactive come game day.   

Dr Jay-Lee Nair PhD | Psychologist MAPS
Book an appointment to prepare for peak performance in your next tournament at the Singapore Sports Medicine Centre.