dpb5031, on 16 March 2017 - 02:17 PM, said:
nikegal, on 15 March 2017 - 01:34 PM, said:
A lot of excellent posts and Birdeyman's comments on instructors is the best and most accurate summation that I have seen on this or any board. Excellent thoughts Birdey
Good luck to you all and more than anything, enoy the journey, never forget that she needs you far more as her daddy, no matter her age, than her golf coach, agent or instructor and be there to dust her off when she stumbles and falls.
Also, FWIW, I would be very very very careful(hint, hint, hahaha
) about getting a girl a mental coach at the age of 17-18yo.
Maddy, thanks for the "hint!"
Curious to hear your reasoning because I know from your posts and Richard's posts that you both believe the mental part of the competitive game to be so important?
My reasoning is fairly simple and consists of a number of reasons. First, as hard as it is to find a quality junior Teacher to instruct a child, young teenager or a 15-18yo, and as few quality Teachers as there are, it is even harder to find a "Mental coach," and there are, at least in my mind, far far fewer "mental coaches." The vast majority use a broad brush approach, based totally on theory, because most have absolutely no experience of Playing "under the gun," as Pete and Sam used to say, so they have absolutely no idea what a child/teenager is feeling, other than what they've read in a book. Then most that I have spoken to when I've asked them about their philosophy and theories, it's similar to a system Teacher of the swing- They will attempt to fit every individual, regardless of their physical make-up, strengths and weaknesses, into their swing system, except a mental "coach" does this with a child's mind, which I believe is a very poor approach and potentially much more damaging and tougher to correct than a physical swing flaw. I'm sorry, but for me, and more importantly, my kids, that is simply not good enough.
Richard has worked with boys from the ages of 14-18 for just over 20 years, starting when he was coaching football and before we had met. He noticed that he had players who had all the physical tools, had performed well on the practice field, and where as a practice round of golf is indeed a light hearted affair, football practices can be very intense and Richard was known as a very intense coach and he has always believed that the closer that his players practiced to game "Speed," from a speed , intensity, focus and concentration standpoint, the better prepared they would be for games. He has easily over 100 books on the psychology of performance from academic texts to mental performance books written by shrinks, Coaches and athletes. He does not really speak of this on the board but he said that he didn't care if I mentioned this and he works with boys only and at first I could not understand why but after getting to know him, and seeing his relationship with his mother and sister, and how he treats me and my daughters, well, he adores us and while he can separate his feelings with guys and boys, he told me and I can see it and that is he totally lets his guard down and is very "soft" with the females in his life and he treats all females with respect and dignity and he speaks often of "turning it up," well, he cannot "turn it up" with females, whether it be his mother, me or Ava or a little 14yo girl, lol. He is much softer with my girl students than I am, lol. I am not "hard," but they have him wrapped around their fingers, lolol.
The reason that I am mentioning Richard is because my mental training for selected students is based off of his program. He has 36 boys that he works with, 17 for football, 14 for golf and 5 for lacrosse. He could probably have twice that number or more but he does it part time and that is the number that he feels allows him to give each boy the time and attention that they deserve. He only works with boys who play a sport that he did and though he did not Play college lacrosse, he received scholarship offers and was also a two-time All-State in lacrosse and he feels very strongly that having been "under the gun" and "been there done that," at least at the highest levels as an amateur in those three sports, he can better relate to and assist a boy to gain what he refers to as the "Three C's," Confidence Commitment & Courage and not just in their chosen sport but more importantly to Richard, in their lives. I agree that without these three traits deeply entrenched in one's psyche, it is impossible to perform consistently at a high level regardless of the Sport, activity or endeavor. It's funny because I have seen these three traits spoken of and written about over the years but Richard's Mentor in football, the NFL linebacker that he has spoken of and I got to meet shortly before his death from cancer and I feel terrible but I only remember his first name, Pete, and he spoke of these three and had a consulting/public speaking business called "3 C's" and Pete instilled these three traits in Richard, but our Teacher, Pete Snead, said that Richard always had them from the time that he knew him because of his Grandmother's influence.
The Confidence to believe that you ARE an excellent Golfer, football Player, business person, etc., and you are deserving of all that comes from being amongst the very best in your particular sport/field and the Commitment to know that you have prepared the very best that you can and to TRUST your preparation and have no self-doubt, whether it be the shot that you have selected, the club that you have selected or most importantly, the swing that you are about to make. Like Richard always says,"Zero Doubts, Zero Regrets." This leads into the third "C," Courage. The Courage to know that you may not hit the shot, you may not win the match and you may not get the victory. It doesn't matter one bit!! You are a Champion and Champions hit bad shots, Champions have bad rounds and Champions will have bad tournaments. But a Champion learns from their mistakes, poor shots and bad rounds and tournaments. They analyze, they correct their shortcomings/mistakes and they come back harder and stronger than before and they overcome obstacles, because ever obstacle that they overcome moves them that much closer to their goals! My last word in that last sentence is CRITICAL! GOALS!! Short, mid and long term. Written down. Read each and every day and this is the most critical measurement that a young person can monitor. Not GIR, PPR w/GIR, FWs hit or LA or spin rate but did they do something that day to move closer to achieving their goals?? We have them keep a diary if you will, and speak to their feelings and emotions each day, and write them down and monitor them because it's great to say "give 100% every time out" and I used to think that this was a great thing to say and strive for until I listened to Richard with his Players and then his employees because he never said this. He said simply, "I want you to give EVERYTHING you've got to give today, to this." Some days we will not have 100% to give, we may only have 80%, for whatever reason(s), and everyone of you knows what I mean. Fine, but just give me EVERYTHING you've got. There is a difference and I observed people giving Richard more than they realized that they had to give, and spoke to a few and they said that they appreciated that he realized that they were human and as such, had great days where they were 100% and others where they were at 80%, but they gave him everything that they had that day. And this is what both he and I Teach our students.
At my(and Richard's) first meeting with a student, and I never do this on a day when we have a physical golf lesson, I will go over the four foundational pillars of our Mental Mastery Program(MMR):
1) Goal Setting
3) Energy Managememt/Focus
4) Self Talk
We also do an initial assessment of the student's current mental skill level by having them complete a customized form which covers-
~ Coping with adversity
~ Confidence & Achievement Motivation
~ Goal Setting & Mental Preparation
~ Peaking under Pressure
~ Freedom from worry
This more or less gives us a baseline on the child and shows us where their strengths and weakness lay and we can use their strengths to turn their weaknesses into strengths. Gosh, as I look back over this I am as bad as Richard as far as rambling, hahaha. It's just that this is such a critical area for any person, child or adult, and I am just not overly impressed with the generic garbage can theories and theorist parading around the lines at tournaments handing out cards as "performance coaches," lolol. Probably the biggest thing that I got from Richard was that after observing he and his students for a few years, I noticed that he would work with them for a period, and this varies according to the individual, however they came up with a mental "game plan," which he put together sitting with the student, and it would have their objectives goals and the strategies, tactics and drills to achieve those goals, and Richard would teach the student to "own" his mental game just as he hopefully worked to own his physical swing and game. It really was incredible to watch because Richard would take a quiet reserved and off of the golf course a somewhat shy and insecure boy and help instill the confidence needed so that he could step away and they could take control of their mental game and hopefully their lives, with a written template and game plan to fall back in when needed and they have always know that he is a phone call away(he hates texts and e-mails, hahaha).
Where most of these shrinks/coaches want these students dependent on them, and I don't care what they might say, watch them and how they "teach," lol. The vast majority do not teach themselves out of a job with a student. I thought this was because Richard did it more as a hobby to help boys versus a job to make a living, even though he does charge a fee, but when I asked him he just laughed and said that I was not even in the right league, lolol. He said that having gone to shrinks himself, though not for mental performance skills, they all worked to build that dependency and unlike when you go to any other doctor or individual to treat a condition, once it is treated and you are "cured," you move on and if and when you have another ailment/condition, you contact them, get diagnosed, they affect the cure and you move on. Not with shrinks. They build a dependency, some more discreetly than others. Ironically, Richard said that the Best that he'd gone to did an initial evaluation, and I've never been to therapy but I guess that this is rare, and he worked with Richard in dealing with his issue(He was sexually molested as a child), assisted Richard in developing the "tools" necessary in dealing with his issues, and then one day Richard showed up and his therapist said that he felt that Richard was "good to go," and if he ever needed him, he was a phone call away. That really impressed Richard and he used that as his standard. We should be teaching children the mechanisms and tools to "own" their mental and psychological games, not teaching them to be dependent on a coach, Teacher or shrink for the next 60-70+ years to get them through pressure situations. Sorry for veering DP, lolol, but this is why I am skeptical of mental/performance "coaches." If they are not going to give your child the necessary tools for successfully dealing with pressure and performing under pressure themselves, and basically "coaching" or "teaching" themselves out of your children's lives, then they aren't worth the ink on their business cards, regardless of what they children think or say. Independent Confidence is one of the greatest traits that I can Teach my own children and I try to teach others. Take care
Edited by nikegal, 20 March 2017 - 12:31 PM.