Golf is simple until it’s not. One thought or one shot can change everything, and it is for that reason that as a professional golfer, one must always remember that staying in the moment is everything.
My name is Astha Madan and I am professional golfer currently playing on the Ladies European Tour and WGAI. This is my rookie year on tour, and last week I was in sunny and beautiful Spain for the La Reserva Sotogrande Invitational that is being hosted by Annika Sörenstam. I would like to use this opportunity to give the readers of this article a glimpse into what pro golf has been like for me this past tournament.
After getting around the course here in Spain, I knew this week was not going to be an easy one with us playing a beautiful yet challenging track with large, undulating greens and strong winds. Day 1 for me was not as I had hoped. It was one of those days when you give it your all, but don’t get much in return. Day 2 started out steady, but I let it get away from me at the end. My game plan was to focus on the shot in front of me and stay in the present, but it was easier said than done. I felt the pressure on my 9th hole after I missed a short putt and it soon caught up with me. With great drives, some missed greens, and poor putts this week resulted in a missed cut and a lot of heartbreak. Knowing that I had given it my all and came up short was not a pleasant emotion to deal with.
Pro golf has been similar yet very different than amateur or college golf. Apart from the changes in physicality such as course conditions and personal skills, dealing with the pressure and the emotions that come with putting everything on the line has perhaps been the biggest change from amateur golf to pro golf. And I have realized that nothing can compare to pro golf than pro golf itself. This week I learned that as a pro golfer (no matter what the circumstance), the most important thing one can do is: Stay in the moment. Because that is all we have at any given time.
However, it always so happens that we take away the most learning in hindsight. And even though it may seem too little too late, it isn’t. And for that, I am grateful because the journey is long and filled with growth. I am ready to take on the challenge, but I would not be able to do this without my support group- my parents, my sister, and my coach- who continue to stand beside me through the ups and the downs. As I move onto the next one, some more focus on preparation lies ahead and I look forward to teeing it up next week at the Jabra Open in Evian with more patience and more intensity.
About the Author
Astha Madan is elder sister to Nishtha and currently plays on the Ladies European Tour and WGAI and this week she is playing at Jabra Championship in France.
She will be soon sharing her experience from France too.