How to Play as Well in Tournaments as You Do in
Playing in a golf tournament can be fun and challenging. Tournaments can run from local or corporate events to
PGA-sanctioned events, and just about everything in-between.
But playing in a tournament is not the same as playing with your buddies.
In order to do well in a tournament, you have to prepare yourself. Here are some tips to help get you
1. Control Your Nerves: Even the most seasoned professional golfer gets nervous as tournament time approaches.
There is no reason for you to believe that this will not happen to you as well.
The trick is to be prepared for it.
If you feel yourself becoming anxious during your play, take a few deep breaths and, if possible, close your
eyes for a couple of seconds. Allow your breathing to settle down, and focus your mind not on all that "could" go
wrong, but rather on this one, single shot in front of you.
2. Practice Rounds: Many tournaments include a practice round. You should take advantage of this opportunity if
you can do so.
A practice round can be maximized. As you play your round, jot down the yardage to the green (back, front and
center). Jot down yardage to bunkers and other trouble areas. Take notes on which club you use for each shot and
make notes about whether or not this was the right club for that shot.
If you are allowed to do so, hit a few different clubs off some of the more interesting tees to see which club
does the best job. This can be very useful for par-3 holes. It is important to keep a record of all of this for use
during the tournament.
When you get to the greens, consider making a chart. Just draw a simple picture of the green, divide it into
quadrants, and then jot down any breaks, slopes, direction of grain, etc.
When you play your tournament the pin will be located in one of these areas and by having this information with
you, you can choose the best approach shot onto the green.
3. As you go through your practice round, and then later on that night, think about your game strategy for each
For example, you may have decided during your practice round that playing a 5-iron off a certain par-3 is the
best option for you. Unless something changes, such as the weather, this is the strategy for you to use on game
One mistake some players make during tournaments is they see other players using longer or shorter clubs and
they then decide to break their own strategy to do what everyone else is doing. Do not do that. Play your own game
and stick to your strategy.
4. Golf Club Selection: Before you tee off you must pack
your bag. Make sure you give thought to your club selection. Do you have the right wedges for this particular
course? Do you need your hybrid fairway woods or would long irons serve you better?
Remember, you only get to take 14 clubs, so make sure you have the ones you need.
Also, make sure you have enough ball, tees, towels, etc. It is always a good idea to pack a light snack of fruit
or nuts in your bag as well, and don't forget water.
When you put all of these tips into action, your tournament play will be much easier on the nerves and you will
enjoy the game much more. Good luck!
The Amazing Golf Mind mental training technique is also an excellent way to learn how to calm your nerves for an