This LPGA Player Overcame The Yips
“Will I be able to get over it?”
“Is the yips something that can be cured?”
These are the thoughts in the minds of golfers who feel trapped by the yips.
It’s an uneasy feeling when you feel like a novice just learning the game despite playing the game for a number of years.
When you have the yips… The simple seems complicated… Your once comfortable putting stroke or swing feels uncomfortable.
Swinging the club freely, without thinking, is overtaken by giving yourself instruction about every minute detail of how you should swing the club.
You deposit every bad swing in your memory bank that you carry with you to every shot.
With all these impactful factors, the yips definitely feel “incurable”.
The truth of the matter is that you CAN get over the yips.
If you can make good swings in the past, there is no reason you can’t swing smoothly again.
It is a matter of getting out of your own way…
What that means is letting your body do what you have trained it to do throughout the years.
So, how do you get over the yips?
You need to do two things to get over the yips: patience and focus.
1. Patience – When it comes to the yips, there is no overnight fix. Overcoming the yips requires unlearning some bad habits.
And even though you may birdie a few holes or play a great round, doesn’t mean the yips or tense putting won’t return.
Progress and improvement is often a few steps forward, and a step or two backwards.
Be patient, stay positive and work on putting freely again.
2. Focus – Focusing on the future, missing, or guiding the club leads to tension.
The best plan of attack is focusing on something other than your swing or the last shot.
Instead of over-thinking your stroke, you can focus on your breathing, your pre-shot routine, a song in your head or some other focal point unrelated to your swing or the ensuing result of your swing.
Getting over the yips is something LPGA golfer Danielle Kang is in the process of doing.
Kang hit a low point in her career when the yips took over her golf game not long after her break-through performance when she won her first major, the 2017 Women’s PGA Championship.
During one stretch, Kang’s yips contributed to her missing five out of six cuts.
Kang found a way to get over the yips and finally got back on track winning the 2018 Buick LPGA Shanghai.
Kang’s victory wasn’t easy…
Kang trailed by one shot entering the final round and had difficulty on the front nine but something clicked on the back nine and she birdied four of the final eight holes to win the tournament.
Kang talked about her difficulty taking the club back and her recent progress in her game.
KANG: “I actually can’t pull the trigger. Having to get over that last week was incredible for me. Even on the first round, one shot took me, I think, four minutes… I had the swing yips, the putting yips, everything possibly you could think of. Overcoming the anxiety you feel over the shots, it’s so much that golf does to you.”
After Kang had a trying front nine at the Buick LPGA Shanghai, she regrouped by using an effective mental strategy suggested by her caddie, Ollie Brett.
KANG: “We pretended we started the round brand new on the 10th hole. Then things changed.”
Despite having a difficult time on the front nine, Kang stayed focused on what was right in front of her rather than reliving her past shots.
When you approach each hole with a “fresh start” mentality, you can focus on the strategy for your current shot instead of results or swing mechanics.
A lot of golfers have gotten over the yips and so can you.
You must change your mental approach to the game. It’s not about fixing poor mechanics or changing putters. You have to put without your mind interfering in the process.
A Tip for Getting Over the Yips:
Don’t assume you have the yips for the entire round if you have one jerky putt or chip shot…
Tell yourself, “It’s just one putt/shot, I still can have a good putting day.”
The yips is not an “all or none” issue for golfers. So don’t talk yourself into thinking you have a disease or affliction after one miss.
Have a short memory for the first putt you jabbed. Move on to the next hole with a positive intention on the green.
Check out Breaking the Yips Cycle video and workbook program:
Overcome The Yips and Enjoy Golf Again!
Golfers, do you suffer from:
- Anxiety, tension and over control of the stroke or swing?
- Performance anxiety about what others will think?
- Inability to wing the club freely on the course, despite the fact that you can in practice?
Check out: Breaking the Yips Cycle
Golfers: Learn how to overcome the fear that keeps you stuck in a vicious cycle
Instructors: Learn how to give your students the mental game edge.
Coaches: Help your team members play with freedom instead of fear or tension.
What are Golf Psychology Students Saying?
“Yes! Awesome tips and they worked great. I was having a tough time mentally with putts inside of 4 feet for self imposed fear of missing them. After doing all of your drills I found myself just looking at the hole on the shorts putts similar to a free throw. Seems to be working. Thank you so much!”
“I write you because it’s been 6 months since I started the program Breaking the Yips Cycle. Before that I was putting with a long putt and due to the ban on anchoring I switched to a short putt and started your program. The yips program has helped me a lot. I have been able to focus on what matters instead of thinking about the outcome or fearing a yippy stroke.”
~Ricardo Abogabir C.
“I’ve had the yips for 30 years. With the anchor ban, I thought I needed to quit golf. It was frustrating hearing golf experts and commentators state that no amateur was going to quit golf because of the anchoring ban. Obviously, these experts don’t know anything about the yips. I’m so glad I found you. Your drills really helped. It might sound silly, but the biggest thing that helped me is knowing that the yips is mental. It might sound crazy, for someone to have the yips for 30 years, and not know it’s mental. I also believe I know my reason for having the yips, and I see how my insecurities in every day life contributed to the yips. Thank you for your help.”