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Zen Golf Quote of the Week
April 2009

 

  Kraft Nabisco Championship
New Book - GOLF: The Art of the Mental Game
  The Masters Championship
Events and Dr. Joe Joins the 21st Century
PGA Tour Notes
Tour Stats to Know

 

THE KRAFT NABISCO CHAMPIONSHIP


Dr. Joe was working with Cristie Kerr at the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the first major of the year on the LPGA Tour. Cristie played great all week, and was sharing the lead on the 72nd hole until the very last putt dropped. Here's a piece of an interview Cristie did with Dana Gross Rhode:

 Q. Can you talk about another team member, Dr. Joe Parent? Can you tell us about the mental part?

CRISTIE KERR: Yeah, that's the part – obviously I put a lot of work in on my physical game, but my mental game, I have committed myself to saying, you know what, if I want to get to the next level, this is part of what I need to do. 

You know, I looked through six or seven people and finally met with him and talked with him and in a really peaceful, calming way. He's a Buddhist, which means the literal translation is awareness of being awake, awakeness. So he just teaches being aware of your feelings and how to manage your emotions and to really bring out the best of what you have by getting you back in your body and not so much in your head, because when you are in your head, your body and your mind are not in sync and you cannot let your shots throw freely and let your talent come out if you're thinking about it too much. So I work really hard with him on that.
    

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THE MASTERS CHAMPIONSHIP

The first major of the PGA TOUR season is in the books and it took 74 holes to reveal the champion, Angel Cabrera. The number one and two golfers in the world, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson started 7 strokes back and were in fact a tournament within a tournament, garnering a huge amount of the attention of both the patrons at Augusta National and the television audience. Tiger had his number in mind, -11, which he felt would be the winning score, Phil just went out and made a boatload of birdies. Once their valiant comebacks stalled on 17, however, the focus turned to Kenny Perry, Chad Campbell and Cabrera who were all in the hunt from the beginning of the day.

After finishing at -12, all three players showed signs of the Major-Induced Stress Syndrome (MISS) as the playoff began. As the pressure mounts, the tendency to guide and steer often has the exact opposite effect on a golf swing than one would like. The free-wheeling driving range swing that works so well when there is no consequence to a shot becomes a careful, restricted motion that usually sends the ball where you'd rather it not go. This is where sticking to your routine and staying in your rhythm pays the greatest dividends.

Perry and Campbell both missed the 18th green from perfect lies in the fairway. Cabrera had his own issues, getting a lucky rub of the green when he ricocheted his approach solidly off a tree and back into wedge distance from the fairway. Perry chipped up beautifully for a tap in par, Cabrera rolled in yet another clutch putt, and Campbell fell by the wayside as his 4 footer to stay in the playoff didn't even touch the hole.

When Perry missed his fourth green in row on the second playoff hole he left the door open for Cabrera, who responded with a well played iron into the green and two putts for his second major championship title.
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NEW BOOK

GOLF: The Art of the Mental Game

Dr. Joe's newest book, GOLF:The Art of the Mental Game is now in stores. Published by the incomparable Rizzoli Publications, and featuring the art of classic illustrator Anthony Ravielli, this is one beautiful golf instruction book. As usual, Amazon is selling it at a great price, so please check it out for yourself and consider it when deciding on Mother's and Father's day gifts this year.

We would appreciate your comments, at the Amazon site as well as getting in touch with us directly, as we just love the way the new book turned out.

Special Offer for New Full Members 

New full year members will receive a personalized, autographed copy of the new book by Dr. Joe, hot off the press. Sign up today!
  
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EVENTS

Mind, Body, Swing at the Ojai Valley Inn

Immerse yourself in a unique experience - developing your mental game, your physical capabilities and your technical expertise all under the guidance of Dr. Joe and LPGA Hall of Famer Amy Alcott in a special program at the Ojai Valley Inn and Spa Resort. Spend three days with four of the top coaches in golf at one of the finest 5 diamond resorts in America.

This program also features sports trainer Kevin Brown, who has worked with Fred Couples and the San Francisco 49ers, and Jeff Johnson, head of instruction at the Inn.
 

Dr. Joe in the 21st Century

For those who may be doing the Twitter thing, Dr. Joe can be followed at www.twitter.com/zengolfer.
  

Member's Teleforum

This month's Member's Teleforum is scheduled for Tuesday, April 28 at 5:30 p.m. Pacific, 8:30 p.m. Eastern.

Dr. Joe at Your Club

You can invite Dr. Joe to speak at your club, and offer a Zen Putting clinic as well as group lessons and on-course instruction.

For more information, please call the Zen Golf office at (805)640-1046 or email info@zengolf.com

 
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PGA TOUR NOTES

There has probably never been a golfer in history who could be the talk of a tournament when he is nine or ten strokes from the lead, as Tiger Woods was in his return to stroke play at the CA World Golf Championship. As play was wrapping up on Saturday the announcers were following Tiger as much as the leaders, discussing whether he was too far back to have a chance the next day. Such is the power of reputation, and while Tiger shot a -4 68 on Sunday, he was only able to make up one stroke on Phil Mickelson.

Of course, two weeks later it was a completely different story, with Woods only 5 back of Sean O'Hair going into the final round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill Country Club. As defending champion, and 5-time winner, Tiger obviously has a great affinity for the course, and he showed why the announcers from two weeks earlier probably weren't completely out of their minds to be discussing his chances of a last round comeback. Being in the final group with Tiger is certainly unlike any other experience on the PGA Tour, and while O'Hair hung in there admirably, there was simply no overcoming the irresistable force that is Tiger Woods when he smells victory.
 
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TOUR STATS TO KNOW

In the 1980's one player on the PGA Tour, Morris Hatalsky, averaged less than 28 putts per round, and from 1980 to 1987 approximately eight players per year averaged less than 29 putts.

The 90's were just as tough for breaking 28, as Ben Crenshaw was the only player to do so, in 1994. The average under 29, however, skyrocketed to the thirties in the first half of the decade, then doubled up to around 60 through Y2K, when Brad Faxon was the leading putter for the third time in his career, heading a group of 74 who averaged 28.99 putts or less per round.

Since 2001 13 players have finished a year on the PGA Tour averaging less than 28 putts per round, with Chris Riley, Ben Crane and Aaron Baddeley each appearing twice, and the average who broke 29 has jumped again to 78 per year.

The current list this season has the usual 75 under 29 through the Shell Houston Open, but an eye-opening 7 players using the flatstick less than 28 times per round. And it's especially nice to see the name Faxon back on top.

Whether it's the improved condition of the greens, the space-age equipment advances or merely better putters working harder on their games, it's clear that this is one statistic on the PGA Tour that has seen steady, gradual improvement over the last 30 years. It's also the part of the game that benefits most from a good mental outlook and proper attitude, which is something we can all strive to improve on from season to season. 
 
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For more information on any Zen Golf programs, please call the Zen Golf International office at (805)640-1046 or email info@zengolf.com 
 
Feel free to forward this newsletter, or links to archived newsletters. Please don’t hesitate to let us know if there are other topics you’d like to see addressed in our Zen Golf Newsletters, or any other feedback that will help us serve you better.
 
Yours in Clarity, Commitment, and Composure, 
Ken Zeiger 
Program Director, 
Zen Golf International 
 
©2009 Dr. Joe Parent
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