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The Secret To Beating Tiger Woods At Golf


Paul Shearstone

The game of Golf, although difficult to master, can nevertheless be narrowed down to three fundamental disciplines:

  1. The Power Game [Driving & Iron Play]
  2. The Short Game [Finesse / Shots within 100 Yards]
  3. Putting.

Success in golf is largely focused on mastering each skill ‘to the best of one’s ability’ and in so doing, a player’s talent or the lack thereof, becomes evident.

Ask any golfer, even the pros and they’ll tell you which of the three disciplines they are best at and which they find most challenging. By most challenging, they mean the skill in which they are least adept - resulting in the highest percentage of ‘Errors’ on the course.

In the book, Dave Pelz’s Short Game Bible, author and golf short-game guru, Dave Pelz, studied the best players on the PGA circuit and compiled some revealing data.

In his research, he ignored a player’s swing fundamentals preferring rather to concentrate only on ‘Errors Made’ in each of the three disciplines averaged over thousands of shots and hundreds of games.

More to the point, a Player’s Performance Results.

He discovered professional golfers, on average, had an error factor of 7-8% when driving [including irons]. In the short or finesse game their error percentage jumped to a surprising 13-26% and he found top PGA golfers – the best of the best - enjoyed only a 50-50 chance of sinking a six foot putt. He referred to these statistics as a player’s ‘Percentage Error Index’.

That said; who among us would be surprised to find Tiger Woods with the best all round average Percentage Error Index amongst the pros?

The fact is, Woods is an enigma. Like Michael Jordan or Wayne Gretzky, he is a rare blend of above average talent in the disciplines that count which is what separates him [them] from the rest.

In Tiger’s case, his ability to consistently achieve High Performance Results may make him the best to have ever played the game.

Despite his unquestioned abilities, though, experts and golf aficionados know he is not the best at any one of the three golfing disciplines. That is to say, recent PGA standings show Darren Clark with a 2.9% error factor as the best driver, Phil Mickelson, master of the short game and Ernie Els the best at putting with a 1.678 average.

Tiger is not the best at any one discipline – currently ranked a surprising 51st in the Putting category. He is still, nevertheless, the best at the game and toughest to beat!

The Power of Three

Hypothetically speaking, imagine for a moment what would happen if the rules of golf were changed, just a little? What if players were allowed to take a ‘Team Approach’ to improve their chances of winning?

Simply put, Tiger would play against a team of three. Clark would do all the driving, Mickelson would work the irons and Els would only putt.

The answer is not all that mysterious. With a team approach Tiger Woods would not stand a chance and the stats clearly bear this prediction out. In fact, any combination of three players, one from each discipline [listed in the PGA’s Top Ten] would overcome Wood’s formidable talents.

In the end, the only mitigating factor would be LUCK – a rather ironic twist for those who have ever played against the Tiger.

Although the game of golf is and will always remain an individual sport, the point not to be lost here is if experts were indeed allowed to compete as a team, three against one, using only their dominant strengths, they would automatically improve their win-potential becoming an indomitable force fueled by an unbeatable Percentage Error Index.

To put more succinctly; regardless of factors like reputation, flair or swing-fundamentals, they would achieve Better-Performance-Results and Better Performance Results are EVERYTHING!


Paul Shearstone aka The ‘Pragmatic Persuasionist’ is one of North America’s foremost experts on Sales and Persuasion. An International Keynote Speaker, Author, Writer, Motivation / Time & Stress Management Specialist, Paul enlightens and challenges audiences as he informs, motivates and entertains.

To comment on this article or to book the Pragmatic Persuasionist for your next successful event we invite to contact Paul Shearstone directly. 416-728-5556 or 1-866-855-4590 www.success150.com or paul@success150.com.


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