juliette91, on 05 December 2018 - 07:29 PM, said:
Sweet! If you have anything to add about why you think the yips affect mostly better players and why all seem to have the same kind of flinch I'd be interested in your take. I know from studying this that the flinch affects many sports--baseball to name one as well as many musicians. Might go by a different name but the physical result is eerily similar
I'm guessing some of us neurotic types are just more susceptible to it. I played baseball throughout high school and actually started out as the starting shortstop on our junior varsity team. We had a one run lead in the last inning of a game during my freshman year, and with two outs I fielded a routine groundball and then threw a one-hopper that our first baseman couldn't handle. The ball got past him and the runner took second. Next hitter singled and we gave him second base on a catcher's indifference. So, they've got runners on second and third and I get another routine groundball to me at short, which I field cleanly, and then when I try to throw it to first it was as if I couldn't move my arm fluidly to release the ball. I throw it straight into the ground, it gets past the first baseman, both runners score and we lose the game. I had singlehandedly lost the game for our team. The next day in practice I'm taking grounders and throwing every single ball into the dirt. I literally could no longer throw a baseball across the diamond. I'm a sure handed fielder, so our coach moves me to 2B and it's the same thing. I couldn't even make that tiny little throw to first. Coach eventually moves me into the outfield, which I had never played, and I turned out to be a pretty good outfielder, and had no trouble making throws from the outfield for assists. In fact, I had quite a few assists where I caught guys at home plate with a rope from the outfield. But anytime I ever played infield again, I couldn't make an accurate throw, even during fun recreational softball leagues. To this day, I still can't play normal catch with my Dad or kids without throwing every third ball or so into the ground. Lol.
I played golf in high school and was a pretty good ball striker. My short game back then was already poor, but not to embarrassing levels. I could chip/pitch/blast the ball onto the green and usually give myself a look inside 15', but it was never a strength. My first real yips were on putts inside 4'. Playing in the CIF Northern section championships I hit the first seven greens in regulation, but was +6. Lol. From that point on, since I was already out of the running, I played even and shot a 78. Once I took up the game again in my 20s, the shanks slowly started to creep in on the short stuff and now it occasionally gets so bad that I shank putting style chips with an eight iron from the fringe. When I play men's club tournaments now, I have to take two shots of whiskey at the first tee to calm myself enough to execute these basic shots. I've tried to stop caring and just laugh about it, but as soon as I get over the ball I just revert to the jerky action and I'm toast.