Troon Gave Us the Historic Rarity of Two Elite Players in the Zone

As I watched the final round of the British Open get played out between Henrik Stenson and Phil Mickelson, it became clear that something special was happening. Phil birdied the first hole while Henrik bogeyed, but then Henrik made three birdies in a row. And then Phil made an eagle to pull within one again. For the… Read more »

The Curious Case of Joel Stave

For an interesting look inside the mind of a top-level college athlete, read Albert Chen’s piece on Wisconsin quarterback Joel Stave in the Aug. 31 issue of Sports Illustrated, linked here. In it, he describes the painful process Stave went through to recover from a form of the “yips” in his throwing motion — a… Read more »

Jordan Spieth and the Ingredients of Mental Toughness

Watching Jordan Spieth dominate the Masters and hit clutch shot after clutch shot at the U.S. Open — and be by all accounts one of the most gracious and polite people on the PGA Tour — it’s very easy to forget that he’s only 21 years old. Unlike Tiger Woods, who when he was dominating… Read more »

The Breakdown of Tiger Woods

Go back and recount the incredible things Tiger Woods has done in his career—and there are a lot of them—and one of the most common threads in those stories is his competitiveness. He had swagger, like virtually all the greatest players do. It is a mixture of confidence, self-belief and even arrogance that makes the… Read more »

The Reinvention of Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods has always played golf like it is a combat sport. He is ferociously (and famously) competitive, and he has spent almost two decades physically and mentally dominating the other competitors on the PGA Tour. And just like that, he’s back. Great day at the #TWCharityPlayoffs with @tigerwoods! https://t.co/Vah4LHpPhr — Hero World Challenge (@TWFoundation)… Read more »

Solving the American Ryder Cup Puzzle

Whether you look at the results on the course or the friction surrounding Tom Watson’s captaincy, it’s clear the American Ryder Cup system is in disarray. The 16.5 to 11.5 result at Gleneagles was Europe’s eighth win in the last 10 Ryder Cups—including the last three. Even if Watson had somehow managed to conjure the… Read more »

Getting in the “Zone”

STACK Magazine“The ‘zone’ refers to a higher state of consciousness where we perform our best; it’s something human beings innately strive for,” says Dr. Michael Lardon, a sports psychologist and author of the book, Finding Your Zone. Elite athletes always strive to perform at this level, but many have a hard time getting there mentally. To help you out, we picked the doctor’s brain for a few tips on getting in your zone – and staying there.

Desire vs. Will

Lardon advises transforming your desire to do something into your will to do it. “With desire, you have this energy, and it’s just out there; but with will, you channel that energy at a goal,” he says.

“Take Tiger Woods for example. Everything he does always has a purpose, a goal attached. Everything you do in your life [should be] related to your goal: what you eat and drink, how often you [socialize], when you work out and if you train your mind.”

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