quick coaching

Tour Tip: Learning To Step Into The Arena With Confidence Like Luke Clanton

By Brendon Elliott, PGA
Published on

Sitting at -12 and in a tie for fourth through two rounds at The John Deere, amateur Luke Clanton has enjoyed a second straight week of excellent play on the PGA TOUR. It has long been the belief that young, promising golfers must cut their teeth a bit before they can go toe-to-toe with the world's best on the PGA TOUR. However, Luke is just one of several recent examples of talented, super-confident, yet virtually untested young players who jump into the arena with the big boys saying, "Let's go!"
Clanton joins names like Nick Dunlap, Miles Russell, and Ludvig Åberg, who have proven that you can come to the big show and make a statement without much experience being there so long as you have complete confidence in yourself and your abilities.
Confidence is a game-changer in golf, regardless of your level of experience. It can elevate your performance, leading to better shots and lower scores. Here are five tips that can help you boost your confidence and transform your game on the course.
1. Develop a Consistent Pre-Shot Routine
Establishing a consistent pre-shot routine can help you feel more confident and in control before hitting each shot. Your routine can include visualizing the shot, taking a practice swing, and focusing on your target. Following the same routine before every shot can build confidence and reduce anxiety, allowing you to approach each shot with a clear mind and a greater sense of assurance.
2. Focus on Positive Self-Talk
Your inner dialogue on the golf course can either bolster or break your confidence. Instead of dwelling on past mistakes, focus on positive self-talk. Remind yourself of your past victories, acknowledge your strengths, and use affirmations to reinforce your confidence. By replacing negative thoughts with positive and encouraging self-talk, you can cultivate a more resilient and confident mindset on the course.
3. Practice Visualization
Visualization is a powerful tool for building confidence in golf. Before each shot, take a moment to visualize the desired outcome. Imagine the ball flying toward the target and landing exactly where you want it to. Visualizing successful shots can help you feel more confident about your ability to execute the intended shot, enhancing your belief in your skills and increasing your chances of success.
4. Embrace a Growth Mindset
Adopting a growth mindset, which is the belief that your abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work, can significantly boost your confidence on the golf course. Instead of viewing mistakes or challenges as setbacks, see them as opportunities for growth and learning. Embracing a growth mindset allows you to approach each shot with a sense of curiosity and openness, enabling you to learn from your experiences and build confidence in your ability to overcome obstacles and improve your game.
5. Trust Your Swing and Commit to Your Shots
Trusting your swing and committing to your shots are essential components of playing golf with confidence. Trusting your swing means having faith in your ability to execute different types of shots, which comes from spending time practicing and honing your swing mechanics. Once you are on the course, commit fully to each shot without hesitation or doubt. This means making a decision about the type of shot you want to play, visualizing the outcome, and then executing it with full confidence.
Trusting your swing and committing to your shots can instill a sense of confidence in your ability to deliver the desired result, empowering you to play with conviction and assurance throughout your round.
Summing it All Up
Incorporating these tips into your golf game can help you cultivate a greater sense of confidence on the course. Remember that confidence is a skill that can be developed and strengthened over time with practice and deliberate effort.
By focusing on your pre-shot routine, self-talk, visualization, mindset, and shot commitment, you can elevate your confidence and elevate your overall performance on the golf course. Start implementing these strategies into your game and see how playing more confidently can improve results and a more enjoyable golfing experience.