Excess muscle tension is not just a signal that your mind is not in the right state for peak performance.
It is also one of the primary reasons why your golf swing can change so dramatically from one shot to the next.
Excess tension in your hands can slow or block the release of the club.
The hardware saying holds true for golf as well. "Tighty righty... loosy lefty." ;-)
Excess tension in your shoulders and arms can dramatically change your swing path.
The slice swing path is often directly related to tight shoulders that work above the optimum shoulder plane.
Tight muscles in your jaw and neck can reduce the size of your swing significantly.
It is very difficult to make a full rotation back and a full rotation through when the muscles of the jaw and neck are fully activated.
Not sure of the validity of these points?
Next time you're at the range test them!!
Verify it for yourself.
Try to hit shots when the tension level in your hands, shoulders, jaw and neck is much higher than normal.
Try to hit shots when the tension level in your hands, shoulders, jaw and neck is much lower than normal.
Notice what happens to your shots.
More importantly notice the differences in how your swing feels.
Small changes in tension level can make big changes in where your shots end up and what your golf swing feels like.
If you're not aware of what these changes feel like... how are you going to notice them when you're playing under pressure or when the score really matters?
If your grip pressure is normally a 5 (on a scale of 1 to 10) and it changes to an 8 without you knowing... Your shots are going to end up in VERY different places than you are used to.
There are a lot of things you can train to get more consistency in your shots.
Tune the focus in your mind.
Tune the movements in your swing.
No less important... is tuning the tension levels in your body.
In my experience it's one of the biggest physical reasons why there's so much difference between the range, the course and the course during a tournament.
As the perceived pressure increases... so do the tension levels in your body.
Raise your awareness of where in your body that happens and when that happens and you will be able to perform a lot better when it matters most.