The Glue – the Critical Key for Tournament Success

Mon, Mar 2nd, 2020
The Glue The Glue

Perhaps this is the most critical part of tournament golf – the glue. I think every person has seen a player that seems destined for top level glory – strong swing, great ball striking, reliable short game and hungry and determined. But inexplicably many of these players don’t make it whereas others that never seemed to be the stand out player, or possess the laser bullet tee shots, or the touch on the greens a few years later are making millions each year on the Tour?

When we look at a house – we may see many physical things – stone, brickwork, wood, windows, doors etc but without the cement and glue to fix the parts together the house would just fall down. So the critical part is almost the ‘invisible’ part – and its exactly the same with success on the Tourthe most critical part is the ‘glue’ that bonds the skills an elite tournament player requires in order to score low.

That’s why you can never judge a player by the quality of their swing or putting stroke. Of course, this can be an indication of their potential, but the skills required to actualise this potential are very much dependent upon the ‘glue’.

Chip PicSo what exactly are we referring to with the glue?

The glue is essentially is the ABILITY TO SCORE. The ability to turn a 4.5 into a 4, a 5.5 into a 5. It’s the ability to get the best out of any given situation. And much of this is rooted in the thinking skills – the ability to think under pressure, the ability to focus, the ability to have the confidence in your techniques under the stress of competition. It’s rooted in your character skills – the determination and the desire to achieve your outcome.

How can an ambitious tournament player develop and hone such skills?

On our programs and with the young players I coach, I introduce what I call ‘Adversity Training’. Take the example of Special Forces training - do they select the solider who is the absolute fittest and most muscular? And the very best at shooting? The answer is no – of course a certain level of competency is required in a number of fields – fitness, strength, shooting ability, navigation skills etc. So what is the defining criteria between a regular solider and a special forces combatant? Again, it’s the GLUE – the invisible non-tangible abilities. And how do Special Forces train? They focus on training in adverse conditions – both physically and psychologically. To give you one example of how we do this at ECGA we have an on course 18 hole game whereby after the 1st or 2nd shot on each hole, the player has to move their ball 10 yards further away from the hole to a slightly inferior position. For example the ball may be on the fairway, and now they put it in a nearby fairway bunker. The rule is that you only do this once per hole. On the next hole you may hit your drive on the fairway, and then your 2nd shot on the green. Then you move the ball 10 yards further away from the hole on the green. So to summarise, on either the first or second shot (not both, either or), you move your ball 10 yards away from the hole to an inferior position. Record your score each time and see if you can break par with this game!



DistanceAt ECGA we have specific training rituals to assist building this GLUE.  If you are a Player, Parent or Coach Click on the link below to join our Practice like a Tour Player 4 week Webinar Series. In this you’ll learn to build your own unique practice system relevant for the practice facility where you train. We GUARANTEE success to any player following through with this program – it’s that powerful.



Jon David HowellOr are you a Coach looking to join a network for Elite Coaches? Our Elite Coach Certification Program is delivered online, so you can learn from the comfort of your own home! It’s recognised by the PGA for 130 points CPD points. Click on the link below to learn more and receive an information brochure.

Click HERE to learn more about becoming an Elite Performance Certified Coach



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