Golf psychologist Dr Kitrina Douglas shares her secrets to bringing out the best golfer in you – and it's surprisingly simple! Keep reading to bring play your best golf ever in 2020 …
By Charlotte Ibbetson
British Ladies Amateur champion, Curtis Cup player and eight-time winner on the Ladies European Tour, Dr Kitrina Douglas is no stranger to the feeling of ‘being on top of your game’.
But how do you make sure that happens every time you play a round of golf?
How do you make sure you’re always getting the best out of yourself?
And what lengths should you go to in order to win?
Questions that have undoubtedly crossed the minds of sportspeople the world over, Dr Kitrina may just have the answer – and it’s incredibly simple (in theory):
“Since everyone is different, do what works for you on the golf course to succeed.”
“When I was an amateur I would occasionally caddie at county matches, as I figured watching the best players up close and seeing how they played shots and made strategic choices would be a great learning opportunity for me. And it was, though what I learned wasn’t always what I was expecting.”
Dr Kitrina was caddying for a player who was a couple down in her match. But a heated disagreement over a ruling totally turned the match on its head:
“The player I was caddying for suddenly became a different animal, seeming to relish the confrontation. Their walk and demeanour was more purposeful, and they looked more intent, slightly aggressive and engaged. Within five holes my player was up in the game - and eventually went on to win.”
“The player I was caddying for smiled and said to me quietly that a little aggression was exactly what she needed to perform at her best; to hate the opposition and have a reason to beat them.”
But, Dr Katrina explains, whilst anger makes some players thrive, the same isn’t true for everyone.
So how can you make sure you always play your best golf?
- Work out what sort of golfer you are
And always stay true to yourself.
- Recognise that some people see sport as war
For these people, aggression is all part of the game; they enjoy it, they thrive on it.
- But for others, the opposite is true
There are plenty of naturally mild-mannered and gentle golfers. They have the opportunity to be just as competitive and just as successful.
- Stay focused on your own games, rhythm and swing
You cannot control anything other than your own actions and thoughts – accept that some days things will go your way, and some days they won’t.
In her recent column for Women & Golf, Naga Munchetty shared something that resonated with me as I was writing this article, and I want to leave it with you as a bit of inspiration for the next season:
“I was recently chatting to a friend who showed me a picture of his snapped 7-iron. He broke it in a fit of temper while playing with his son. I laughed and said it has happened to me and many of my friends, but I honestly don’t think I would see the red mist again. I’m learning to accept the golf game that I bring to the course on the day. I have faith that my form will return.”
You can read Naga Munchetty’s full article in the latest issue of Women & Golf magazine. Subscribe now to read the full feature and enjoy W&G delivered to your door!