And Tiger Comes Tumbling Down

Rick Hamada
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Wednesday - August 18, 2010

By the time you read this, Tiger Woods may be the reigning PGA Championship winner. But as of this writing, days after his worst finish as a pro - finishing 78th out of 80 players the previous week, on a course where he’d won seven times - that seems unlikely.

But is it any wonder that he is self-destructing on the PGA Tour? He has lost virtually everything that was important and influential in his life over the past several months. How can anybody be expected to perform at his best when his life is at its worst?

But the fact is, Tiger is responsible for his meteoric demise.

The message found in this story is the obvious consequence of the decisions one makes. Would Tiger have continued his vainglorious and hedonistic behavior if he had known it would lead him to where he is today? Probably not.


The lesson is there is nothing worth doing if it jeopardizes your family. Tiger’s disintegration is directly associated with the loss of his wife and children. The destruction of this blessed family unit is solely because of a husband’s series of adulterous affairs. He must live with the understanding that it was his actions that destroyed their home. That’s a lot of guilt, a ton of baggage.

A professional downside to his serial betrayal is the loss of his coach, Hank Haney. Haney is credited with rebuilding Tiger’s swing, which made him the most winning and exciting player perhaps in the history of the game. It wasn’t long ago that it was more of a surprise if Tiger didn’t win the tournament he was playing than if he did. But with his fall from grace, so was the falling out with the coach.

A coach in golf is not only a swing coach but a life coach, too. In team sports there is the group element, limited individual responsibility and an adrenal release that can replace thoughts of distraction. In golf, some say the most important part of the game is the six inches between your ears. Golf is primarily a mental game and secondarily a mechanical one. When such life upheaval occurs, like what is happening with Tiger, it will inevitably have a disastrous effect on your psyche - ergo, your performance on the course will suffer.

Is this the end of Tiger Woods?

Probably not. But all this suffering for himself and his loved ones would never have happened if he would have simply honored his wife, their marriage and their children.

The game of golf is full of risk-reward decisions. In this case, Tiger took too great a risk and ultimately found no reward.

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