Some Food For Thought...
In order to PERFORM any life skill we must stop the conscious mind from attempting to CONTROL our physical actions. This process happens AUTOMATICALLY in ALL life skills where we are NOT regularly coached, our Attentional Focus switches from an internal to external focus NATURALLY. Swing thoughts destroy flow and performance.
Remember how you learned to drive a car, ride a bike or play a musical instrument? Initially, you were consciously attempting to control your actions and were not very good at it (internal focus). Through repetition you improved. Most significantly, your instructor stopped talking/directing and your Attentional Focus went on to the road ahead or sheet music (external focus). Now you drive a car with total trust in your non-conscious mind to control a vehicle where your life and that of others is at risk!
So why can't you ever trust your non-conscious mind to manage your actions when putting or swinging a golf club? Well, you have to take a closer look at how you are being coached and practice golf. It is this self-limiting behaviour TOG eradicates.Golf has been and continues to be taught with a polar opposite mentality to Trust.
This lies at the heart of why so many struggle to play it and why so many walk away. From your very first lesson, when your attentional focus is removed from the target (external focus) and onto your grip, stance, posture, takeaway etc. you are being coached to consciously control the physical action of your swing (internal focus). Regardless of the technical ability achieved, golfers can and do occupy their golfing lives unwittingly having their attention switched from 1 body part to another trying to find a cause for such inconsistency. The absence of consistent target orientation.
I'm sure you own a number of training aids. They are an aid for training NOT trusting. Have you ever owned a trusting aid? There's a reason for this. TRUST in golf (and life) only manifests itself when you pay no attention to your physical actions. Every time you use a training aid, psychologically it's like putting your training wheels back on your bicycle. What does this tell you at the subconscious level? I don't trust my self.HOW can you TRUST in competition that which you constantly DOUBT in practice?
The traditional method of golf "swing" coaching actually INHIBITS an individual from achieving the golf state of mind where performance lives (external focus). This institutionalised approach sustains the golf coaching industry. If you need to read that last sentence again, please do so for many golfers have taken their game through the same process and many continue to do so. Just imagine if there was a more efficient way of learning how to LEARN, PRACTICE and PLAY the game of golf?Target Oriented Golf will uniquely explain to you HOW to both TRAIN and TRUST.
It should be quite clear to you by now that repetition alone does not result in mastery in sport/life/golf skills. In fact it can inhibit the acquisition of a skill if used inappropriately. Some academics suggest 10,000 hours of practice are required to become an expert. Whose methods do they use to draw such a conclusion do you think? What if the methods being analyzed are flawed? You can learn to drive a car in under 40 hours. The very reason why our work exists is that many recognise they are 'getting in their own way' out on the course. HOW you practice is the key to mastery.
Your problems begin well before the 1st tee. Please understand it is not the NUMBER of hours which leads to expertise. It is what you focus your ATTENTION on during those hours which matters. There is a vital brain function which must be understood in order to perform/become expert in golf and that is attentional/visual focus separation. This is unwittingly prevented from occurring in many athletes/golfers due to inefficient coaching practices, hence the 10,000 hour theory being presented.
Academic research (read) is already revealing there is something peculiar in the way golf is being taught but little changes in the real world of 'below the neck' golf instruction. Healthy scepticism, an enquiring mind and Target Oriented Golf will help you complete your golfing gestalt. Plato sums up your current challenge wonderfully: