There was a fascinating interview on BBC Radio 5 Live this morning (20/07/14) with golfing legend Gary Player discussing the pressures of competing in the final round of the 2014 British Open at Hoylake. With Rory McIlroy poised with a 6 shot lead to take the crown Gary Player was asked how, in his career he dealt with the pressure of holding onto a lead on the final day against such players as Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson and Lee Trevino close behind in the final round. Gary talked about the major changes that he sees in the physical and mental areas of the game as everyone looks for that extra edge that makes all the difference. He was a pioneer in physical fitness for golf and was weight training at a time when most players would have thought that that level of physical fitness unnecessary. His three important markers to optimum achievement were working on physical strength, mental strength and attention to diet.
These days the rewards in sport are so great that no one can afford to leave anything to chance. Being able to control the mind and keep oneself in a state of higher awareness and intense mental clarity is the way to engage fully with every technical detail that has been painstakingly practised in training and on the practise ground. So how did Gary Player as far back as the 60’s and 70’s keep his mind focused and clear for those six hours of intense concentration when his closest rivals were breathing down his neck knowing that every shot could mean success or disaster? What was the secret method he used to keep his mind and body fully focused on the job of reaching the finishing line in first place?
So what is this optimum state and how can we achieve it? The great racing driver Ayrton Senna eloquently describes this state with an experience he had while on the way to winning the Monaco Grand Prix in 1988.
“That day I suddenly realised I was no longer driving consciously and I was in a different dimension. The circuit for me was a tunnel through which I was just going, going, going and I realised that I was well beyond my conscious understanding”
This is a wonderful description of the “out of body” heightened awareness state that any great sportsman or artist is aiming to develop as they take their skills to an ever higher level. The question is how do we access it whenever required rather than just hoping it will suddenly “turn up” at the crucial moment.
Being “In The Zone” is being in a state of trance, and hypnosis is a trance state that virtually anyone can access. All sports psychologists will talk about visualisation as a key to performance and hypnosis is the key to visualisation that gives anyone access to a greater part of their creative mind. Once that part of the mind is activated then the fluency of one’s hard won technical ability can become, as Senna describes, automatic.
Hypnosis is a fantastically powerful and accessible way to build a mental and visual repertoire of the information and mind sets required to take any skill to the highest level. Neither does hypnosis have to be a state that is only accessed with one’s eyes closed. Think of daydreaming and you have self hypnosis. Imagine being able to access the height of your skills in the best situations wherever and whenever with a mental skill that will engage your creative mind in a positive way. And with this ability being able to release simply and effectively all that information programmed into your muscles.
This heightened sate is often described by many of the top performers. Being “on a roll” or “in the zone” is a description of accessing a trance like state, and we can all do it. However knowing how to access it whenever required is a key to top performance.
So now we know that Rory Mcilroy won The Open at Hoylake with two shots to spare and this will take him even closer to the very highest level of golfing greats. All great performers have access to this state and Tiger Woods is another player said to have used hypnosis on a regular basis. Accessing hypnosis is easy but knowing how to use it to full advantage can bring amazing results.
I work with professional athletes, footballers, performing artists, snooker players and in fact with anyone who is searching to develop that next level of consciousness that allows them to access the very best of their skills day in day out.
If you would like to book an appointment, or to find out more information – please call 07970218451 or send an Email.