18SP 007: Ellen Port | The Process of Winning

Ellen Port is one of the greatest amateur golfers to ever play the game.  Man or woman.  In this episode, Ellen gives us her story and some secrets insights into her winning formula.

Going from not playing golf until she was 25 y.o. to winning the biggest amateur events in the world shows how special this woman is.

Ellen also explains how fitness has played such an important role in her continued success at the highest level.

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Ellen’s Background

  • Mother of 2 kids (17 and 15 year olds)
  • Full-time teacher and golf coach for John Burroughs HS in St. Louis, MO
  • Graduated from University of Missouri, Columbia
  • Worked with Hank Haney
  • Works currently with Brian Fogt from Bellerive Country Club
  • NEVER had the thought of turning professional

Career Highlights

  • Didn’t start playing golf until age 25
  • Multiple Metro Women’s Amateur Titles
  • 9 Time Missouri Women’s Amateur Champion
  • 6 USGA Titles
    • 4 -time US Mid Amateur Champion
    • 2-time US Mid Amateur Champion
  • 1994 Trans National Tournament Champion
  • 1994 Played on the Curtis Cup
  • Curtis Cup Captain for the United States 2014

What’s the Biggest disappointment you’ve had on the course?

  • Lost a match to Carol Simple Thompson when she was trying to make the Curtis Cup team for the 1st time
  • Always tries to be positive and focus on what you did well and what you can improve on.
  • Golfers MUST evaluate their game honestly.

Ellen’s Process on the Course

  • Can’t focus on the winning, gotta focus on the process
  • Doesn’t usually count her score when she is out on the course.
  • The only thing you can control is the next spot
  • Perfect Arousal State: Can’t be too amped up or too nonchalant
  • Jason Selk: http://enhancedperformanceinc.com/
  • Ten Minutes to Toughness

The greatest Achievement in your Career

  • Every win is special
  • She is most proud of her record for the longest span between USGA titles (10 years), the fact that she has been able to win over several decades of her life!

Curtis Cup 2014 (St. Louis Country Club)

How has Fitness Played a Role in Your Career?

  • Notices a big difference when she has been in the gym vs. not.
  • Endurance becomes a large factor, especially in the double round days

Ellen’s Advice for the Busy Golfer

  • Look at it as a marathon and not a sprint
  • Do you really understand the mechanics of your golf swing? If you don’t understand the cause and effect of the swing, the exercises aren’t going to fix everything.
  • Need to spend time in the gym and working on the course, so you have to know you are working on the right things
  • Find someone knowledgeable that can put you on the right program
  • “You gotta have a plan, you gotta have process goals, . . . you have to set short term and long term goals”
  • It has to be enjoyable!

Inspirational Quote

photo“Don’t try to be better than someone else, never cease trying to be the best you can be”

-John Wooden

Talent is God-given, so be humble, fame is man-given, so be thankful, and conceit is self-given, so be careful.”


Connect with Ellen:

Facebook: Ellen Port 

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