To prove the value of mental management and rehearsal, I would often relate a true story related to the topic. A Navy fighter pilot was shot down in Vietnam, captured and imprisoned for years in the famous prisoner of war camp the “Hanoi Hilton”. The pilot was an avid golfer back home, and to get through the extremely demanding situation, he would shoot rounds of golf in his head.
For years he would play his favorite courses perfectly in his mind. Eventually liberated and back on US soil, the first thing this pilot did was jump out of the military ambulance and onto the golf course. After explaining away his ragged looks (he was tall man and extremely skinny from malnutrition) he shot nine holes of golf at 1 under par. This was shocking to those that witnessed the event and when questioned about how this was possible, the pilot replied “Gentlemen, I haven’t hit a bad shot in 4 years!”
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