Changing Your Mental Approach
Johnny Miller’s golf career would likely be way more impressive had he not been plagued by the putting yips most of his career.
After his second major in 1976, at The Open Championship, Miller began struggling with the ‘yips’ and failed to win for the next 3 years. Even worse, he labeled himself as having the putting yips.
He tried lots of strategies to eliminate the ‘yips,’ but found it difficult to find a permanent solution.
“You can’t explain why people putt badly at times,” Miller said. “It might be mechanical, or it might be mental. Figuring out the cause is the difficult part.”
Like most golfers in a putting slump, Miller tried to improve his game by working on the technical side of putting.
He adjusted his grip, stance, and technique. He tried to switch to left-handed putting. He tried looking at the cup while stroking the putt instead of the ball.
When these changes didn’t work or were a temporary fix, he switched to a specially designed putter touted to help players overcome the putting ‘yips.’ An average putter has a 33- to 36-inch shaft and the putter Miller began using had a 48-inch shaft.
The new putter helped him regain his form for a period of time. He tucked the putter under his right arm-pit to keep his club steady and straight. Although this helped Miller, he still struggled with the putting yips throughout his career.
Then in his final and most remarkable victory at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in 1994, Miller made a break through. He realized that in order to putt without the yips, he needed to change his mental approach.
Related Article: Mental Imagery And The Putting Yips
While standing over an 18-foot putt on the last hole for the win at Pebble Beach, he pretended to be a clutch putter, just like his son, to help him make the putt.
”I was over that putt knowing I needed it,” Miller said. ”My son is a real good money player for dollars. He makes ’em when he needs to. I figured, ‘Well, I’ll pretend I’m him.’ So I was sort of a third party to the putt and it went right in the middle,” said Miller.
I’ve always agreed that the best way to become a great putter is to start thinking like a great putter.
If you label yourself as having the yips forever, it’s hard to break free of that self-given label. You want to imagine the putter you would like to be.
How many young golfers do you think imagine themselves as and emulate Ernie Els or Tiger Woods’ game?
Miller was on to something profound… Start thinking like a great putter… or better yet, start imagining you are a great putter who putts with confidence and a smooth, relaxed stroke!
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.
Breaking The Yips Cycle: How to Putt, Chip, And Pitch Freely and Enjoy Playing Golf Again
What are Golf Psychology Students Saying?
“The mental side is everything in golf—the ability to see your shot or line and trust that you can hit that shot or putt. Dr. Cohn has helped me trust my game and putting stroke.
~Frank Lickliter, PGA Tour, Nike Tour Winner
“To win at any level, you have to train both your mind and body. Dr. Cohn does an excellent job of teaching you how to develop confidence and touch around the greens, both of which are vital to any player’s success. Dr. Cohn has taught me excellent practice drills for putting that have helped me become a better putter.
~J.L. Lewis, PGA Tour winner
Download Our FREE Anti-Yips Putting Drills
Do you spend most of your practice time trapped by stroke or mechanics on the practice green?
Are you unsure how to practice to hep you overcome the putting yips?
Golfers: Learn how to putt with freedom using proven putting drills!
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What are golfers saying about our putting yips drills?
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“To play well, you have to believe you can play well. Confidence goes a long way in golf. Dr. Cohn has developed a great system that helped me improve confidence and my overall mental approach to golf.
~Brian Watts, 11-time Winner on the PGA Japan Tour
Overcome The Yips With Expert Mental Game Coaching!
Master mental game coach Dr. Patrick Cohn can help you overcome your mental game issues with personal coaching.
You can work with Dr. Patrick Cohn himself in Orlando, Florida or via Skype, FaceTime, or telephone. Call us toll free at 888-742-7225 or contact us for more information about the different coaching programs we offer!
What are our mental coaching students saying?
“I should really thank you for all the tools you have given me for learning how to perform and to help others perform.”
~Camilla Dettori, MGCP student and golfer
“My short game improved, I did not get down on myself, and dropped my handicap by two strokes.”