THINQ Golf is a leading company that is helping golfers (and other athletes) to optimize their performance through scientifically based games and education.
Training your mind/body for optimum performance in golf is really the new frontier in athletic training that has been only *somewhat* explored but TG is really taking this to a new level in their world-class, innovative products and training.
How Did This come About?
THINQ Golf was founded in 2012, by a select group of sports psychologists, neuroscientists, and PGA/LPGA professionals who were searching for tools and methodologies on how to improve mental/cognitive skills that directly effect (and, of course, influence) performance on the golf course.
Most amateur athletes understand that their professional/elite-level counterparts possess stronger physical skills, but several recent scientific studies have proven that these elite-level athletes also possess stronger cognitive skills.
More specifically, these studies have determined that in performance based situations, the brain maps of elite athletes are more “synchronous” than those of amateurs.
THINQ Golf’s mission is to address this “gap” in cognitive performance through the use of science-based games and a variety of mental tools. Golfers of all ages and abilities should be able to benefit from these tools and work on their mental game in a way that is fun, easy, and informative.
THINQ Golf is my new game of choice. Healthy for my mind and good for my golf game – Trevor Murphy, Web.com Tour Player
Improve your Mental Skills
THINQ Golf has targeted 5 specific areas that can be measurably improve our golf performance. These include:
Awareness – The skill of awareness is the first key to performance. Without it, we cannot initiate a change.
Attention – Your thinking precedes motion is the concept explaining why attention is so vitally important. Where is your attention just before you pull the trigger? (hint: it better be in the present moment)
Synchronicity – The ability to synchronize everything throughout the entire sequencing of your golf swing.
Intention – Making a clear intention on every shot based on all available information at the time is one mental skill used by all the best golfers.
Adaptability – The mental ability to adapt to any situation or circumstance.
About the Science
If you think this is a bunch of fuzzy logic and hack science that results in pulling the wooleys over your eyes, you might want to re-evaluate once you take a gander at all the thorough research and testing that went into these games.
A laboratory measure of each mental skill (Awareness, Attention, Synchronicity, Intention, and Adaptability) was used to design the games. Upon completion, each game was also research tested to determine the efficacy of the game to influence brain patterns and/or golf performance, or both.
I mean you can see all the research, stats and more on the site. It’s amazing to read through. For example:
Intention game training (10 minutes) illustrated a significant decrease (24%) in cm error from the hole compared to control golfers who increased cm error (9%) from the hole. There was also a 39% increase in number of putts made following the Intention game play, while controls increased putts made by 6%.
There is also a nice section on the use of EEG (electoencephalograph) in their research. This represents the amount of electrical activity in a specific area of the brain.
EEG brain maps are read by the color represented and the balance of activity in each site of each hemisphere. The brighter the color, the more the activity in that specific location. So you can kinda get a holistic view of what parts of the brain are stimulated just prior to initiating motion.
What Kind of Games are Offered?
Awareness Game – This game trains you to be aware of the target, or becoming more target-focused. A target provides an image your brain can work with. A lot of us (me included) sometimes get fuzzy about what we’re aiming at. For example, have you ever had this mental state, “I’ll just hit it somewhere out-there”. Yeah, well, that’s not too specific, right? We can do better. Much better.
What if we were laser-focused on the target? What if you could improve your target awareness skill? Do you think think your results would change? Once you are dialed in, a motor program is then constructed in the brain as a template to send to the muscles and BINGO – better, more consistent golf shots!
Attention – This will determine which swing comes out and how our shot flies or rolls. Our minds must have something to do to stay in the present moment, or it will wander.
Attention is the last factor we have conscious control of before we start the motion. There are three aspects of attention that are being trained in this game: acuity (how clearly we focus), distractibility (how easily we lose our focus of attention), and sustainability (how long we can maintain our focus of attention).
Synchronicity – This is an other game I love! It trains our ability to take an outside signal (a tone), a visual signal (a bar traveling across the screen), and respond by tapping the bar at the exact time of the tone. This allows you to further strengthen the neural paths that synchronize your mind, body, and target.
Intention – Honestly, this is a game that has challenged me a bit but I suspect different folks might have challenges with different games. That’s fine – this is about improving your mental skills, afterall.
The game uses a cost-benefit analysis concept and prompts the player with three risk options: high, medium, and low, in which the task is more difficult with choosing a higher risk level.
Then, the golfer performs the game task at the level they have chosen. After completing the task, the golfer evaluates their performance to complete their routine.
Who’s using it
I’ve been in the golf business for a little bit and currently I’m seeing more information on how to improve mental performance but mostly in terms of auto-suggestion, affirmations, swing keys, etc. This is different. It’s training for your mind.
So I’m not surprised to see all the high profile players, teachers, coaches, organizations and others using the ThinqGolf training. These include the LPGA, The First Tee, Girl’s Golf, Texas State and Arkansas, just to name a few.
I finally have a game that not only I enjoy playing but that also helps me improve on the hardest aspect of my golf game. These games are intriguing and catching, I always finish playing – GIULIA MOLINARO, Tour Player
Become a Member
You can play a number of games for free so you don’t have to become a member. But at only $4.99 a month it really is a super deal considering all the cool stuff you receive including:
- Online Brain games – Develop essential skills like awareness, attention, synchronicity, intention, and adaptability that are necessary for optimal golf performance
- Online Leader Boards – how do you match up against others? Leaderboards allow you to compete against other THINQ Golf members using our Q-Score scoring system and measure your proficiency against those of your same handicap, gender, age, or even your own customized group
- Monthly Webinars – These webinars take an in-depth look at the mental skills that our games and tools are helping you to develop and this interactive experience allows members (that means YOU!) to receive invaluable knowledge from the esteemed THINQ Team
- Journals – Journals help you clarify and prioritize thoughts and feelings, manage stress, and solve problems more effectively
- Vision Boards – Vision board allows you to define and focus on an intended goal. Whether it’s hitting more fairways, holing more putts, better pre-shot routine, staying “in-the-moment” or almost anything else, Vision Boards can help you get there
All in all, you receive tremendous value for the price of 1 (just one!) Starbucks Caramel Macchiato per month! Can’t beat that now, can you?!
Check out all the great info on their site here: THINQ Golf
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