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World-famous coach Alred to give masterclass in Tyrone

By Declan Bogue

In the wake of his astonishing triumph in the Portugal Masters, Padraig Harrington was invited to share some of the secrets of how he secured his first win on the European Tour for eight years.

Even though he has in the past confessed to using press conferences as exercises in sports psychology and is one of the sunniest individuals on the planet, he has been working loosely with Dr Dave Alred for a few years.

If you don't know by now, Alred is one of the foremost coaches in the world, concentrating on skills acquisition and mental preparation. In a previous life, he was known by the rather limiting title of Jonny Wilkinson's 'kicking coach' when the England out-half was in his prime.

On the course, Harrington practises Alred's self-talk, constantly reassuring himself. But just prior to the Portugal Masters, he picked up Alred's book 'The Pressure Principle' and a light flicked on - he had been too critical of himself around the course.

What was, 'Ah no, Padraig. That was bad. You can do better than that' soon became, 'That's fine Padraig, now we are going to hit an even better shot the next time'.

"I was just nicer to myself," Harrington told the Off The Ball radio show on Monday.

He put last weekend's triumph down to that adjustment.

In the past, Oisin McConville has credited Alred with revolutionising his kicking technique when he was the principal score provider for Crossmaglen and Armagh.

On Saturday December 10, Alred will be present at the Tyrone GAA Garvaghey Complex as a guest of the Tyrone Academy.

The highlight of the day will be a masterclass on 'Performance Coaching' with a Kicking Workshop.

While Club Tyrone have laid this day on for the benefit of all academy coaches, along with club coaches in the county, there will be a limited number of spaces free for others to attend and pick something up from a man who has been at the cutting edge of elite performance for the last two decades.

Belfast Telegraph


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