Canadian Fade - Play, Practice, Enjoy

Situation Specific Practice

Derek Highley - Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Every so often we see really incredible plays from various sports, whether it is a great catch such as this video of Odell Beckham Jr or a great goal, awesome shot, cool move etc .. and it leaves us wondering, how did they do that?.

While these plays are awe inspiring they often speak more to the level of commitment and preparation of the player then they do to pure athleticism.

The videos below show that Beckham's catch was indeed incredible but it was no fluke.  It was the product of specifically focused practice.

The Catch

The Preparation


We can learn from this and adjust our practice habits accordingly.  Too often in golf practice sessions consists of hitting balls from good lies to unobstructed targets with little time spent on the specialty shots, difficult shots, shots more indicative on what we are going to be called upon to play on the golf course.

Author of the book "Talent Code", Daniel Coyle refers to this as High Leveraged Practice.

As described by Coyle, High-leverage practice shares a few common characteristics:

  1. 1) It’s focused. You aren’t pre-creating the entire game, but only targeted situations.
  2. 2) It’s often untraditional. It doesn’t tend to fall into the list of conventional practice techniques, and as such, is easy to marginalize or overlook.
  3. 3) It’s habitual. High-leverage skills aren’t built in a few specialized sessions; they are built over time, through repetition and routine.


So the next time you see an unbelievable golf shot played by Rory, Tiger, Phil ....  rest assured that it was no accident.  Chances are they have envisioned that shot before, anticipated it and practiced it.  That imagination and commitment to improving their game is the real magic.


Here is another example of "High Level Practice" that I love

Patrick Kane

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