GoKart Psychology Test

Oct 31 2011

Take a look at this picture and say what you notice first;

GoKart electric golf trolley

1) That’s a fine looking golf trolley (GoKart owner)
2) I can hole that putt (optimist)
3) Going to need that  brolly (pessimist)
4) Lovely scenery (work for the Scottish tourist board)
5) Sod the rain, I wish I was there (real golfer).

With thanks to Linda C for the photo from Arran.

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Golf? It’s mental!

Dec 27 2010

Well if you’re stranded away from the course because of snow/grannies then we have the answer for you. Stephen Smith, our resident Golf Shrink, can sort you out.  Now look into my eyes…

Armchair Golf
Its deep mid winter and the scene outside is just as King Wenceslas would have seen – the snow is lying across these isles deep and crisp and even. Across the land golfers are looking at the weather and praying for a respite so that they can get out and swing a club in anger. It has been so cold that even a trip to the driving range is out of the question for the hardiest of individuals- so no one has an opportunity to practice at the moment do they? Well perhaps there is.

Recent research split up a group of sportsmen and women into two separate practice groups. Group A were allowed to practice in their normal way with full access to all their equipment. Group B had all access to kit taken away and were forced to use mental imagery as part of their practice routine only.

After a couple of weeks the groups were assessed on their performance in the sport. There was no difference in performance between the group that had full access to physical kit and practice and the group that was only allowed to practice in their minds. Not surprisingly, subsequent research has shown that a combination of the two approaches produces the best results.

However, most golfers still only work on the physical side of things and continue to thrash balls on the driving range alone. (more…)

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On the couch – tips to save your score.

Nov 05 2010

The first in a series of articles by our GoKart Shrink, Stephen Smith. This time it’s how to keep a score going all the way through the round. Sit back, read, then watch your numbers tumble…

“Golf is only played one shot at a time but it took me many years to realise that”
Bobby Jones

This statement is as true today as it was when the great Bobby Jones made it in the 1930’s. However, every one of us is still guilty of looking at the scorecard, realising that a good score is possible and then throwing it all away.

Yet we are told it is a simple issue to sort as all sport psychologists tell us we only  have to “Stay in the present” to overcome this problem. And all golfers know that we should not get ahead of ourselves on the course – yet this is exactly what we all end up doing when there is the possibility of a good round on the card. To evolutionary psychologists this is not really surprising as they know that millions of years of evolution have geared our brains to do anything but “Stay in the present” – unfortunately most of us sport psychologists are only beginning to catch on that good process for 21st century golfers cannot ignore the impact that this evolutionary heritage is having on our brains and behaviour . Simply put, the reason why you and I are here is because we are the descendants of ancient ancestors who managed to survive the perils of ice ages, saber tooth tigers and rampaging woolly mammoths long enough to ensure that their genes were continued. (more…)

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It’s (not) all in the mind

Oct 26 2010

Introducing our very own GoKart Golf Shrink (posh name = Chartered Sports Psychologist) Stephen Smith. Stephen’s company, Sports Psychology Ltd, is doing some research into how equipment, namely electric golf trolleys, can affect the standard of your play. Everyone who owns a GoKart knows about the ‘GoKart effect’ but it’s time to take the message out into the world! We’ll keep you fully up to speed with what the research is uncovering, it promises to be pretty interesting.

Stephen’s rather impressive pedigree encompasses an education at St. Andrews University (of course!), work with Formula One, Premier League football, Olympic athletes, national rugby players, international golf teams and one very well known Major winner (we would say who but it’s very, very secret and if we do he might hypnotise us or something). He was also the resident Psychologist on Setanta TV’s ‘Out of Bounds’ show (see clip below), featured in a BBC2 series ‘Mind of a Millionaire’ and is a regular contributor on radio, in newspapers and golf mags.

We won’t list all the letters after his name (there are many) but we will say that considering he’s such a boff he’s very normal and loves his golf. (more…)

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