Dealing With Distractions on the Golf Course
Golf is difficult enough without having to deal with mental and physical distractions that could easily destroy a good round. A lot of players will take the shot despite the distraction because they do not want to be branded as a slow player.
Probably the main cause of irritation and loss of concentration among golfers is players who continue to talk while you’re trying to make your shot.
Quite often, these people will make excuses for their inconsiderate behaviour, a common one seems to be that they’re just out for a good time and if anyone is bothered by their talking then they are taking the game too seriously and should not play social golf. They overlook the fact that the majority of golfers like to play their best always.
It is a real big problem to make these non-stop talkers understand that you’re irritated without starting an all-out war. Professional players will step away and look directly at the talker to let them work out for themselves that they are being a nuisance. This usually works for the amateur or social golfer too, but some people are insensitive to everything but themselves or maybe have never figured the etiquette of the course. Learning how to control your temper and maintain concentration when one of your playing companions is rude enough to distract you is important; it’s a lot easier said than done.
When you run into a compulsive talker that won’t take the hint, you have a real problem. The next step is to back away from the shot and say, “Fore please.” That hopefully should do it. Of course by then you’re annoyed and motor mouth is too - the atmosphere and golf is ruined. That is not easy, just make sure that you don't play with them again, they will soon find that they cannot find any partners and you will enjoy your golf again.
Two other common distraction come from a distance - cars going by and honking or players yelling from other fairways. Just back of from the shot - no harm done.
Some players have a habit of standing in your line - behind the pin - on a chip shot or putt. Usually it is just thoughtlesness and is easily solved by asking them to move to one side. Alternatively, go ahead with the shot. Either way your concentration on the shot is probably destroyed so take extra time to focus and compose your concentration, using yoga for golfers is one way of achieving this.
Occasionally during a round you won’t feel right over a shot for any number of reasons. Most of us go right ahead and hit it anyway, back off and compose yourself. Every now and then you might not feel right about how or where you’ve teed up your ball to start a hole. If you’re not comfortable with the placement, take the time to move and tee it up again. Don’t hit it because you’re afraid of being portrayed as a slow player. That only becomes a real issue if you do it with most of your shots - for most players, these are infrequent instances involving an uncomfortable feeling when you’re not set up correctly on the tee.
So, to sum up, mostly the distractions are not deliberate and are infrequent so do not be afraid to back off from the shot and start it again, you will only be branded as a slow player if you do it most of the time.
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