Monday, June 1, 2009

"It's NOT The Club!"

Rumor has it that many years ago Vijay Singh (former #1 professional golfer in the world) was playing in a ProAm tournament.  An amateur golfer was given the privilege of playing a round with this world-class athlete.

As the story goes, after the first shot, the amateur approached the pro and asked, “Vijay, Vijay!  What club was that?”… and after the next shot… “Vijay, Vijay!  What club was that?”  This continued shot after shot… hole after hole… Vijay apparently answered each question politely… but, eventually he couldn’t take it any more.  Not because the questions were a nuisance, but because the guy was completely missing the point.

After Vijay’s next shot, the amateur asked, “Vijay, Vijay! What club was that?”  Vijay didn’t answer…  Instead he asked the man to hand him the 9 iron.  Vijay proceeded to hit the ball 10 feet from the hole.  He then asked for the 7 iron.  Vijay hit the ball 12 feet from the hole.  Finally, he asked for a pitching wedge.  Vijay hit the ball 5 feet from the hole…  He turned to the man, and quietly said, “It’s not the club.”

Regardless of the discipline: sports, music, the arts, communication, etc… it’s never just WHAT tools you use… it’s HOW you use them that makes the difference.


HIO Golf Doctor said...

I have never heard that story before. That is fantastic.

That is the story of coaching and mindsets isn't it. You can tell people when and why, but the how is what eludes us. Changing a mindset is supremely difficult. Anyway great material. Thank you!
Dr Larry Callaway DC

Stephen V. Richardson said...

I heard that story sitting around a table with a group of golfers, so I cannot necessarily vouch for the accuracy of the details. I could definitely see something like that actually happening. I have proved the same point with my point-and-shoot digital camera ("It's Not The Camera"). Thanks for the comments. By the way how did you happen to stumble upon my blog?