Local Knowledge

An essential common trait among top players isn’t one you’d expect. Our new podcast explains

A 'mastery mindset' can take on different forms, but virtually every great player has one
Masters 2022

Adam Glanzman

May 02, 2022

A few months ago we thought to ask PGA Tour stars a seemingly simple question:

When did you know you were good?

Open-ended as it sounds, we were looking for specific moments in which, for the player, a future in golf suddenly revealed itself. From Collin Morikawa and Justin Thomas to Viktor Hovland and Scotte Scheffler, most could indeed identify a specific moment as a breakthrough. Yet to a man, they also returned to a similar sentiment, perhaps best summarized by the new Masters champion.

“It's kind of weird, I never expected to be out here. It seemed like something that I wanted to do, but I never was too focused on it until I was out here,” Scheffler responded at the Players Championship. “I was always just trying to keep getting better.”

More than a dash of false modesty, for each player the answer to the question also spoke to a vital element in their success. In this week’s episode of Local Knowledge, we look at why a mindset focused on improvement is often the telling separator between the talented players who make it and the ones who never quite get over the hump. In interviews with tour stars, a sports psychologist and even a one-time can’t-miss junior now fighting for his career, we hear why talent might be overvalued, and why the right mental approach can often be the difference.

You can hear the full episode below, or wherever you enjoy podcasts.