Science and Golf II: Proceedings of the 1994 World Scientific Congress of Golf

By A. J. Cochran; M. R. Farrally | Go to book overview

27

Toward putting performance enhancement: a methodology using quantitative feedback

P.H. Beauchamp

Department of Physical Education, Université de Montréal, Montreal,
Canada


L.M. Landsberger

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Concordia
University, Montreal, Canada


W.R. Halliwell

Department of Physical Education, Université de Montréal, Montreal,
Canada


R. Koestner

Department of Psychology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada


and M.E. Ford

Graduate School of Education, George Mason University, Fairfax,
VA, USA

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to outline a putting performance feedback system for use by golfers, teachers, coaches, and sport psychologists for performance enhancement. The methodology is implemented using Landsberger's stroke-by-stroke quantitative assessment tool. Putts are conceptualized as short, makeable, or long. Suggestions are made for performance enhancement by coaches and applied sport psychologists.

Keywords: Performance Enhancement, Quantitative Feedback, Putting, Methodology


1 Introduction

Sport psychologists currently utilize numerous techniques and interventions intended to enhance performance of golfers in competition (Boutcher & Crews, 1987; Bunker & Owens, 1985; Cohn, Rotella, & Lloyd, 1990; Crews & Boutcher, 1986; Kirschenbaum & Bale, 1980; Rotella & Bunker, 1981). Quantitative performance feedback is the method most widely used by coaches for performance enhancement, since objective numerical or statistical feedback can help correct misperceptions and may motivate more effective practice strategies. However, current research on golf putting performance has generally used a global indicator (total putts per round) to measure putting proficiency. This is problematic because, from a coaching perspective, such a global indicator cannot pinpoint specific areas of strength and weakness. Therefore, this paper proposes to use a stroke-by-stroke performance feedback system based on Landsberger's (1994) Golf Stroke Value Scale (GSVS) applied to putting, by which the value of each putt can be measured against certain standards.


2 Why Quantitative Putting Performance Feedback?

From the perspective of the coach or sport psychologist, effective feedback for the purpose of performance enhancement requires the identification of specific and measurable behaviors in the golfer's performance. Without the ability to detect specific areas which need improvement, progress is usually quite limited. For example, the coach must be able to offer objective observations such as “the weakest part of your game is your short putts and the strongest part of your game is your long putts, ” or “when you putt from 30 feet, your stroke is smooth, but when you putt from 5 feet, your stroke loses its rhythm.” Consequently, the job of the coach demands a tool to objectively measure the value of each stroke, and to analyze these strokes according to meaningful categories.

Science and Golf II: Proceedings of the World Scientific Congress of Golf. Edited by A.J. Cochran and M.R. Farrally. Published in 1994 by E & FN Spon, London. ISBN 0 419 18790 1

-174-

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