Getting Through Rough Patches in Your Game

By Brendon Elliot, PGA
Published on

We all go through moments where we doubt ourselves and our game, even the pros. 
The week prior to the 2022 KPMG Women's PGA Championship, In Gee Chun seemed to have had some doubt about her game. As it was reported after her win, In Gee had one of those chats with her sister, that chat that many golfers often have, where the purpose of their playing came into question. It came down to asking herself what she really wanted out of her golf experience. 
In Gee Chun chips onto the seventh green during the final round for the 2022 KPMG Women's PGA Championship at Congressional Country Club.
In Gee Chun chips onto the seventh green during the final round for the 2022 KPMG Women's PGA Championship at Congressional Country Club.
In Gee found the strength to believe in herself and her abilities and forged ahead to victory. 
So, what can you do when doubt creeps in and the wheels start to fall off?
1. Stay Calm
Have you ever felt like no matter what you do,  you can ever get things back on track? A big part of this happening has to do with the expectations we have for what a "Good Round" or  "Good Shot" is supposed to look like. If you don’t pull that "Good Shot" off, then your brain often goes into panic mode.
Sometimes you can calm down and gather yourself and other times, especially after a series of bad shots, it's tougher. When in panic mode, you often get tense, start to hurry things up and your normal flow gets knocked off. Learning how to stay calm, mentally, will help the physical manifestations of this from taking over.
Justin Thomas hits his shot on the 18th hole during the second round of the 2022 PGA Championship at the Southern Hills on May 20, 2022 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Justin Thomas hits his shot on the 18th hole during the second round of the 2022 PGA Championship at the Southern Hills on May 20, 2022 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
2. Stay Positive
A bad shot or two is going to happen and depending on your level of play, several bad shots are inevitable. If you can fight off those negative feelings, much like fighting the urge to lose your cool as mentioned above, you can stave off things from getting worse. It absolutely sounds much easier to do than it often is, but if you can learn to follow this pattern after a bad shot- Accept, breathe, refocus, visualize a good shot, and think positive, then you are much, much more likely to hit a good shot after a bad one.
3. Enjoy the Game
The game is supposed to be fun. If you love golf, then why get mad when things start to get bad? It's a game and it's meant to be enjoyed no matter what...so enjoy and have fun!
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