Why the Golf Choke is the Biggest Myth in the History of Golf

The Golf Choke

Why the phrase 'the golf choke' is nonsense

If I hear the words ‘the golf choke’ again I’m going to scream!  It’s a phrase that is talked about all too often in the game of golf. The media love it, and label unlucky golf professionals with it every golfing season.

Back in 2012 professional golfers Adam Scott, Kyle Stanley, Jim Furyk and I.K. Kim all lost tournaments that were in a great position to win.

The headlines read ‘so and so choked with 3 holes to go’ or ‘he choked when the pressure was on’.

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Does it mean anything

The golf choke phrase has no origins or meaning at all. It’s just a meaningless phrase thrown about by a few that believe it makes compelling viewing. It gets associated commonly among golfers who are leading a tournament with either a round to play or even a number of holes to play.

The so called experts deem that the golfer couldn’t handle the pressure and as a result fell apart and handed the trophy to someone else.

We as golf lovers need to appreciate and admire the professionals for what they have accomplished. These players are living the dream playing golf at the highest level.

Just getting a professional golf tour card is an achievement in itself considering how tough it is to get there.  


What proof is there that it exists

Quite simply, there isn’t. If you look up ‘golf choke’ in the dictionary there’s no such word.

True it exists on the internet, but every made up word or phrase is online today.

The closest you’ll find is a description for choke. It reads something like ‘obstruction of airflow into the lungs’.

There's no evidence to prove that the golf choke actually exists in golf today

How do we know the player choked

What proof does anybody have that a player has done such a thing? Even if such a phrase existed, what proof do we have that he/she couldn’t handle the pressure and froze.

The only tried and true way of finding this out is to ask the players themselves.

I can’t ever remember hearing a golfer after losing a tournament say that they choked.

They’ll admit that they played poorly but that doesn’t mean they ‘choked’.

Every golfer plays a bad shot, a bad hole at some stage during their life but that doesn’t mean they couldn’t handle the pressure.

Give credit where it’s due

We need to applaud the golfer that was good enough to come from behind and claim the victory. Give them their dues and applause for playing great and coming up trumps.

During the 2012 British Open all the press could focus on was how Adam Scott collapsed during the final round.

Hardly anyone gave any credit to Ernie Els great final round and how he pulled off a great victory.


My advice

Instead of putting these golfers down we need to support them and acknowledge them for at least getting in a position to win a big tournament.

Most golfers in their lifetime will never come close to achieving this sort of success.

Remove the golf choke phrase from your vocabulary and stand up and applaud just how good these golf professionals are.

I never speak the words and I encourage you to do the same.   


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