The Golf Performance Center Ridgefield, CT

Coaching for Performance vs. Coaching for Development

Tournament season is here! We tend to forget the biggest objective of the game; getting the ball in the hole with the least number of strokes possible. Not about how beautiful your swing is!
Coaching for performance versus coaching for development is a true battle and unfortunately, if you do not have an expert on the subject of coaching, you may be disillusioned as to what golf is about.  The point of having a developmental plan or periodization plan is to help you dissect what you should be spending your time on. Whether that’s working on the “hard skills” of your physical and mechanical tendencies, or working on the “soft skills” of playing shots, course strategy, and the mental management of your game.
Depending on your experience level and developmental age, you may take time in an event to transfer skills from the driving range or practice facilities to the course. Carrying a growth mindset with you into the tournament season will make an immense impact on your overall performance. It makes it easier to trust the process of improvement, lowering the risk of performance anxiety and feelings of lack of confidence.  As you move through your development phases, you will always be learning and acquiring the necessary skills to perform your best.  This does not mean your current best is ready to win an event, it means you are doing your best at that time. Over time, this will translate to more frequent successes, lower scores, and chances to win. The key is knowing when to apply the right coaching strategy.  
The disconnect for many players is the belief that there is an easy way to scoring lower. “If a tour player is doing it, it must be good for me.” There is not one perfect golf swing, but there may be a perfect swing for you. Having an efficient swing is far more important. Having an efficient swing is far more important than searching for that perfect swing.
During the time period of focusing on swing development, around October through April, you do not have to worry about score! Focus on the development process and letting go of results the best you can. 80% of time in the off session should be spent working on mechanics. Conversely, while you are in season, 80% of your time should not be focused on mechanics.
Many of you are going into your tournament season and are still worried about mechanics. It is entirely natural to feel nervous about the outcome because of the new moves you have implemented in your game. However, stick with your process and play the shots you see. Stay committed and enjoy the challenge of pulling off a shot that you have never done before, and may never have again!  Take inventory of the challenges you faced and overcame with good and bad outcomes.
What did you learn about yourself? What did you learn about your game?  
We will continue to push each of you to learn your game better. Take advantage of this coaching by collecting the data needed to help you and us understand how to help you perform your best!  Off with the floaties, it’s time to swim!  
Enjoy Your Journey!