Are You A Sheep or Shepherd?

I have been fortunate to work with a lot of talented young players over the last 20 years, having been involved with 11 county squads, 1 national academy squad, 8 national Champions and 28 county champions.

Reflecting on my time working with these groups and individuals has inspired me write this short piece.

What infuriates me about these young individuals is they all want to follow and act like sheep. They seem to be scared to do something above and beyond what there piers do.

So if their example of good practice is actually poor practice all they do is copy and join that mentality.

I want them to embrace new things and be leaders in their fields and set the standards.

If I think of the great sporting examples, they haven’t been scared to practice in a different way to others, For example Jonny Wilkinson.

I bet when he first started some his training methods many would have observed and laughed at what he was doing. The extra work, the extra intensity and focus. Doing things outside the box.

What I would love to see is young golfers setting the standards in transfer practice and intensity. Along with doing the simple stuff well. Like warm ups that engage their minds and bodies in a way to allow them to perform at a higher level.

I want them to be shepherds not sheep, to set the trends and the standards, to ask good questions like “ what will this do for me”

For them to understand they should never do anything without understanding how will this help me.

Embrace new things with a open inquisitive mind!

Traits of a shepherd
Great Work ethic
smart
Structured
Engaged
Inventive
Reflective
Open
Inquisitive
Brave

So Are you a sheep or a shepherd?