Golf Practice, Daily Talmud Study, and “the Illusion of Competence”

We liked this WSJ article for two reasons. First, we agree that spending lots of time at the driving range does not translate directly into better golf shots on the course.

Second, we agree that practice sessions can lull one into the “illusion of competence” in golf and in many other activities in life.

We like the concept and now we are thinking about how it may help us characterize relgious activities (such as the daily Talmud study called Daf Yomi). Here is the article about golf drills.

Not at Home on the Range:

You’re on the range, pounding balls, and suddenly golf seems easy. All the parts of your swing sync and you start striping one career-best drive after another. “By golly, I’ve got it,” you say to yourself. You can’t wait to get to the course. Science has a name for this exalted state, but unfortunately it’s not “flow” or “in the zone.” It’s “the illusion of competence,” and the odds are it’s doing your golf game more harm than good.


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