Graham DeLaet the latest in a long line of golfers hit by the dreaded yips

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Graham DeLaet the latest in a long line of golfers hit by the dreaded yips
Graham DeLaet the latest in a long line of golfers hit by the dreaded yips

For the past few years, Graham DeLaet has been concerned mainly with the state of his back. Now, it's a different body part that has the Canadian golfer worried: his head.

That would be a head filled with doubts about his chipping and pitching, enough doubts that he has withdrawn from the PGA's Memorial Tournament.

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While the short game has never been a strong part of DeLaet's arsenal, it has suffered this season. Maybe that's the reason behind his anxiety.

Regardless, he joins a long list of golfers who've suffered from what's known as the yips. And if you think the yips are imaginary, the Mayo Clinic has even defined them as "involuntary wrist spasms that occur most commonly when golfers are trying to putt."

And the yips have derailed many a career.

The yips could have been called ``armours," because Tommy Armour was the golfer who coined the term after he came down with them. Things got so bad for the Scot that he set a record with a 23 at the 1927 Shawnee Open. The record still stands. The good news is that Armour overcame the yips and subsequently won three majors.

Others who've found themselves unable to make a short putt or chip include the likes of Kevin Na, Mark O'Meara, Bernhard Langer, Johnny Miller and greats Ben Hogan, Sam Snead and Tom Watson.

But at least the aforementioned managed to overcome their yips.

Ian Baker-FInch and David Duval saw promising careers go downhill fast when they suddenly found themselves unable to take back a putter or club.

For more recent yip attacks, there's Ernie Els, who six-putted from a little over six feet at the 2016 Masters. The jury is still out on whether he can come back. 

The same goes for DeLaet.

 

 

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