Category - Major Events

What Will It Take to Win the PGA Championship? A PGA Coach Shares 8 Keys

By Brendon Elliott, PGA
Published on

For years, the PGA Championship has been renowned for hosting one of the most competitive fields in golf, which prompts a fundamental question.
What does someone have to do to win it?
While most of today's best players have a facet or two of their game that may statistically make them better than their peers, those are not necessarily what makes the greats shine.
At this hour of the Championship, it's more about grit, determination, staying in the moment, embracing the pressure and having a profound belief that one misstep does not define their tournament aspirations.
Collin Morikawa is looking to win his second PGA Championship.
Collin Morikawa is looking to win his second PGA Championship.
Here's the eight traits of a PGA Champion, and what you can learn from each.
1. Positive self-talk. Replace negative thoughts with positive affirmations. For example, instead of thinking, "I always mess up this shot," tell yourself, "I can do this; I've practiced for this." You must make this part of your routine and say the words aloud, softly, to yourself for this simple yet powerful concept to work.
2. Visualize success. Before each shot, imagine yourself hitting the best possible shot based on your current ability level. Visualization can help build confidence and belief in your abilities. However, keeping my next point in mind is also essential to this idea.
3. Set realistic goals. Break down your game into smaller, achievable goals. As you accomplish these goals, your confidence will grow.
4. Focus on past successes. Remember when you've performed well on the golf course in the past. Reflecting on past achievements can help boost your confidence.
5. Embrace challenges. Instead of fearing difficult shots, see them as opportunities to showcase your skills. Embracing challenges can help you develop a more positive mindset.
6. Stay in the present. Don't dwell on previous mistakes or worry about future shots. Focus on the present moment and give your full attention to each shot. Part of this is also to keep off-course thoughts off the course. Focus on the task at hand.
7. Practice mental strength. Incorporate mental exercises and mindfulness techniques into your training routine to strengthen your mental game. One great example of mindfulness in golf is to tell yourself, "Today, I have the privilege of playing golf." This will help you keep things in perspective and be grateful for the opportunity to be on the golf course in a beautiful natural setting.
8. Seek support. Surround yourself with positive and supportive individuals who can encourage and uplift you during tough rounds.
Remember, just like all the technical aspects of the game, building self-belief takes time and effort, so be patient with yourself as you work on developing a more confident mindset on the golf course. These are the things that truly separate the PGA Champion from the rest of the field . . . and make you a better golfer!