YIPS – Help from a Parallel Universe!

Scott Boswell was a cricketer at the peak of his career. His bowling through a cup competition helped Leicestershire get to the 2001 C&G final at Lords. This was his time to shine.

After just two overs, his career was finished!

The occasion got to him, yips had taken a fatal grip on his mind and body. With his muscles tense and tight his rhythm and feel gone, he bowled five wide balls in just one over.

Two weeks after the match he was fired.

The Guardian sports journalist, Andy Ball, wrote a moving article about that match and how it changed the course of Scott’s life: “It took ten years to recover: the story of Scott Boswell and the yips.”

Ten years to recover! Many sports men and woman never recover from the yips, it destroys their lives. A number of sports journalists commented on the article – I am sure between them, they must have heard similar tales of promising careers, in a variety of sports, blighted by yips.

How can someone’s life turn around so quickly? One moment Scott is a respected, top bowler who finds literally within a matter of minutes his career is finished. Also, he walked away from the game like an outcast, with no one able to look him in the eye.

In today’s multi billion pound professional sport there is help with the technical side of the game, nutrition, fitness and sports science to develop mental toughness.

Why does there seem to be so little help for those that struggle with yips?

Parallel Universe

The problem is-in my opinion-the finest minds in sports science understand the destructive nature of stress and the crippling effects a traumatic experience can have on an athlete’s performance. However, conventional methods of dealing with yips often don’t work. Willpower, changing grips and stance, more practise and stress management often are no match for the negative self-talk waiting to unleash its demons. Players that struggle are often left isolated, disheartened and resigned to giving up the game they once loved.

The solution lies in a parallel universe with a simple technique called “emotional freedom technique.” EFT is different to standard sports psychology in that it focuses on the negatives in order to get to the root of any issues.

 Hey, I hope I haven’t lost you now, I know you’re probably thinking lets get the men in white coats over to his house – soon as!

The truth is, how do you explain something so radical, revolutionary that has the power to help a player who has their life destroyed by yips. In never mind ten years, ten months or even ten days, using this extraordinary technique, stress and trauma can be released in a matter of minutes!!!!!

For those that have been bold enough to step into that parallel universe they can be released from those demons, free to return to the game they love.

Drive the mental demons out of your game

In 2007 my work was featured in an article in The Western mail by golf journalist Hamish Stuart, “Get on course to give your game a boost.” The paper offered any of their readers who suffered with the yips the opportunity to work with myself. A follow up article “Players can tap into the positives,” tracked their progress.

Jamie Singer was one of the golfers I worked with:

He was an ex rugby player who had taking up golf, loved the game and improved quickly. The time I met him however he had already given up playing. Suddenly, he was unable to hit the ball of the tee. He found trying to play that first shot with people watching him too stressful. He sought advice, coaching, changing his grip, stance and nothing worked.

In our session I asked him where he felt the problem first started. Jamie was a paramedic, he told me of a hospital golf day where he was playing his first shot in front of the clubhouse with all of his friends and colleges watching. Feeling nervous, with the muscles in his shoulders a little tight he swung at the ball and just caught the top of it, it travelled just a few yards. That experience literally traumatised him. The embarrassment and shame of that moment sabotaged his game.

Unable to recover emotionally from that day his playing just got worse. No amount of practical advice or encouragement could compete with the negative power of his self defeating thoughts.

Understandably, hitting off the first tee – in front of others- seemed to be the core of his problem. I was able to use EFT to take the negative vibration out of that first traumatic experience. When Jamie felt calmer, lighter about even talking about that day, I was able to take the next step and create a worse case scenario- getting him to imagine playing that first shot in front of a clubhouse with everyone watching. Incredibly, after using the tapping sequence to release the stress from his body, he felt relaxed, confident and even keen to play.

Here is Jamie’s account of how he felt about playing, our session and what happened next:

“My game began to fall apart. I was unable to hit off the tee. As a result I began to dread playing because I would have to stand on the first tee with players watching, while I hacked my first tee shot. I was really surprised. I had tried everything and nothing seemed to work and I was really sceptical when I saw the article in the Western mail, but I thought I would give it a try.

 Following the session with Sean, I just started to hit the ball really straight because I was so relaxed and could visualise it. It was really amazing for me.”

I had not told any of my friends, but they did notice a difference – it was the best I had got around a course in a long, long time.”

A return to form

I spoke to Jamie a few weeks after to check how he was playing and he said how it didn’t bother him at all playing off the first tee, he was able to relax and just focus on hitting the shot!  Hamish Stuart was so amazed with the transformation in Jamie’s emotional state following the session, he wondered if Jamie was just saying he felt so much better to spare my feelings. I suggested Hamish- a keen golfer himself – should try it. He again was amazed at the way EFT can be used to focus on whatever is not working in a golfer’s game and put it right.

Jamie is just one example of a player who has tried everything to help free him from the grip of yips and found that nothing works.

I am writing this post to offer hope to those that struggle. I offer a different approach to a heartbreaking problem. A technique that can take the sting out the negatives and help players move on.

Over to you! What have been your experiences? Have you struggled and what have you tried to put it right? Would you be willing to step into that parallel universe to get your life back? If you’d like to know more about how I can help contact me at sean@confidenceontap.com for a free 15 minute consultation.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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