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Win Again

In September, Tiger Woods won a golf tournament for the first time in over five years. Golfing and sports fans alike rejoiced at the comeback-slash-redemption story of it all. Even more than the car crash and subsequent divorce from his wife for Tiger’s (alleged and admitted) rampant cheating, Woods had been dealing with back issues. Tiger’s had a lot of injuries over the years and multiple back surgeries.

As an athletes who’s had back issues that went as far as a couple useless visits to a chiropractor (yoga solved all my problems), I know: A bad back will take you out of any sport. You need your back for bending, jumping, absorbing and creating contact, running, stopping and starting, changing directions, and for assuming any posture position other than standing fully upright like the guards at the gates of some king’s palace.

But Tiger pulled through the injuries and rehabilitations, and now he’s (hopefully) back (no pun intended). I watched video clips of the final round of the PGA Championship event that Tiger won and was amazed at the size of the throngs of people following him from hole to hole in eager anticipation of celebrating his victory (Tiger had held the lead throughout most of the four-day event). I wondered how many of these same fans had had less-than-positive things to say about Tiger after the details of his many extramarital escapades became public back in 2009-10 (The “95% Rule” that this phenomenon reflects is a forthcoming Work On Your Game Podcast topic).

I remember how annoyed I was back then upon seeing Tiger holding a press conference to apologize to the PGA and to his many sponsors, fans and fellow golfers for his transgressions. I was annoyed because I didn’t understand what he owed to any of those people. Tiger was (then) married to Elin; she and their kids were the only people owed any apologies. What annoyed me most was how people responded to his apology as if they were expecting and maybe even demanding apology of Tiger.

Tim Grover, author of Relentless, apparently felt the same way. Grover had a cold, practical resolution to help Tiger: Go win something. All those fans and sponsors and Associations will come right back to you as if nothing ever happened.

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