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Jay-Lee Nair

Playing Mindful Golf for Improved Focus and Performance

Review your habits on the golf course during a typical game…

Do you check your email or intermittently answer messages on your phone?
Do you continue your conversation mid-way through your shot preparation, or worse; when your playing partner is teeing off?
Do you often play “there-abouts” golf, hitting the shot when you know it isn’t the correct choice?

If these scenarios sound familiar, then you could be in a perpetual state of multi-tasking that is negatively impacting your focus, performance, and enjoyment on the golf course.
In today’s information rich society, we have greater opportunity and temptation to engage in two ore more tasks at once.  There is an illusion that this approach makes us more productive and powerful.  In contrast, multi-tasking reduces […]

Bulletproof Preparation for Success as a Collegiate Athlete

During my time as a Division One collegiate golf player moving from Australia to the United States, there were many things I wished I were better prepared to handle as a student-athlete.

If the time to apply for college is fast approaching for you, and your goal is to be accepted by the University team in your sport, here are my top five key areas you need to address to be college ready for success as a student-athlete.

Procrastination Busting – Study Smart
One of the biggest understated dilemmas for college athletes is procrastination with your academic work. I witnessed first hand the players on my team who suffered the most with poor preparation going into tournaments, not because they didn’t work […]

One Week to Go: How to make the most of the tournament count down for junior golfers

Short game, short game, and more short game
This is not the time to alter your swing.  Juniors typically spend most of their tournament preparation time on the range and neglect their short game.  It’s not surprising that those who score poorly tell me their short game cracked under the pressure, while those who play well talk about making lots of putts and up and downs.  Spend more time on the chipping and putting green and less time on the range.
Focus on your strengths
Improving your weaknesses takes time and effort and isn’t something you can alter the week before the tournament.  Leave your weaknesses alone in the final week of preparation and bring more focus on your strengths.  This will […]

Visualise to Prepare for your Marathon

For experienced and novice runners alike, there are many persistent mental challenges to negotiate when running a marathon. For instance, the mind chatter you go through days before the race that questions how well you have prepared, the doubts that creep in with 10 kilometres to go, and trying to remain calm when negotiating those unexpected events like bad weather during your race.
What if there was a way to better prepare yourself to manage these moments emotionally? What if there was a skill or strategy that can lead to improved times, or enhance your experience of the marathon no matter what is thrown at you? Well there is! In this article I will introduce the mental skill of visualisation, […]

Shifting Focus to Build Confidence and Reduce Anxiety: Firing up for the Singapore National Age Group Championships (SNAG) 2015

In your final moments of preparation for the most anticipated annual event for age group swimmers in Singapore you are most likely starting to experience some stress and nervousness along with thoughts running through your head about how you will perform.  You say certain things to yourself or believe certain thing about what might happen and how that will make you feel.  Whatever you are thinking right now, stop for a moment and recognize that you have a choice in how you want to think and feel about SNAG.  Your thoughts can either make you feel scared or make you feel excited to race, make you feel confident or shatter your confidence.

Don’t wait until stress, worry, and anxiety arises […]

Mental Skills Training from a Tour Player’s Perspective

Over coffee on the terrace, I sat down with Laguna Country Club’s Tour Professional Scott Barr to find out his view on consulting a sport psychologist and how mental skills training has raised his game at various points in his career.

When did you start mental skills training and who got you involved?
“It was my parents who got me involved.  When I was seventeen they thought it would be a good idea to work with a mental coach.  I was a good player then, but physically I was no different to all the other good players.  To get the edge over everyone else I needed to develop my mental approach to the game.  It was the mental skills I learnt […]

Is Parental Pressure Always Harmful?

The formula for Performance is defined as: Performance = Potential – Interference.

One of the greatest personal dilemmas that interferes with optimal performance and negates an athlete’s true potential in their sport is performance anxiety.

Last year, performance anxiety was the number one reason athletes and their parents visited my office.  This form of anxiety occurs when the athlete perceives the sport challenge as a threat and is a significant predictor of dropout in young athletes, increases the risk of injury, and is also associated with depressive episodes.  Whilst the factors that contribute to this dilemma are complex, it is the real or perceived experience of pressure that nearly always leads to this form of anxiety.

Many parents and coaches ask me […]

Paralysis by Analysis: One powerful mental technique to prevent it in your golf game

No matter your skill level as a player – beginner, league player, or professional, there is one mental phenomenon that we all fight from time to time on the course.  This phenomenon is the subtle but destructive change in our experience from enjoying the round and playing freely with little thought or tension, to a flurry of thoughts on swing mechanics, and constant tweaks in our swing and set-up from one shot to the next, until there is almost no conscious planning of the shot toward the target.

Instead of playing the game of golf, you end up playing “swing”.  When this happens, your mind becomes paralysed by swing thoughts, your body trapped, and your score suddenly grows exponentially.  Sport […]

Bounce-back from Mistakes on the Golf Course

Effectively using simple strategies to respond positively to mistakes on the course can save you a lot of shots. Developing a positive response to mistakes often requires more than just redirecting your attention and “forgetting about it.”

Some players respond best with thought changing strategies while others find action based strategies more effective, particularly if you are a player who tends to lose your cool.  Here are my top two thought based responses and top two action strategies for getting you back on track fast.

Positive Response in Thought and Discussion
1. Refocus Cues: First create a guiding attitude you want to live by as a player.  An attitude that is based on adaptability and intensity when things aren’t going well, and […]

Three Reasons Why You Need a Balance Between Studies and Swimming

As a former Division-1 collegiate athlete I understand how challenging it can be to balance sport at a high level and maintain good grades.  Late nights, early mornings, and taking exams on the road doesn’t make it easy to strike a balance between the two areas, but here are three reasons why it’s crucial to work towards balancing your efforts in both swimming and academics.

A balance between sport and studies makes you a top candidate for any job
When you get out in the ‘real world’, you must know that companies love hiring former athletes.  This is because you are goal-oriented, no stranger to hard work, and you know how to work in a team.  You don’t need at 4.0 […]