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Argentina  INESfun

22 Feb 2020 at 13:37

There are about 300 recesses on one golf ball, and thanks to them, the ball flies three times farther than a smooth one. ... Balls of the same size...

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United States of America  Smitty

07 Jun 2023 at 04:45

Jason and team make this place beautiful and the tournament is fun and well run.

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Hungary  Magician | 7410 views | 0 comments

31 Dec 2023 at 17:32

End of 2023

United States of America  PatPenguin | 11992 views | 0 comments

17 Nov 2023 at 13:07

A 2023 Masterful Experience

United States of America  PatPenguin | 10764 views | 0 comments

22 May 2023 at 13:19

We’re All Loony Here....

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From which country will the World Adventure Golf Tour Final (April 27-28, 2024) come from?

- Czech Republic

- Sweden

- Germany

- United States

- New Zealand

- Austria

- Wales

- Finland

- Slovakia

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Total 1 votes, since 27 Mar 2024.

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Interview with Ulf Kristiansson

Sweden 29 Mar 2024 at 11:49 | Published by: PatPenguin | Views: 3608 | News search

Interview with Ulf Kristiansson
Ulf Kristiansson  (Photo by )

Marek Zagórski, Vice-President Polish Minigolf Federation (PZMG) and Vice-President of Minigolf Club Mazovia Warszawa, had an opportunity earlier in 2024 to interview Ulf Kristiansson, who was the World Champion in stroke-play at the 2023 World Championship General Class in Uppsala, Sweden this past August. The original interview is linked below and we have been provided the translated version for the website. Enjoy!

Beginnings and Aspirations
Q: When did you start playing mini golf? Did you have any support from the coaches?
A: I started playing at the age of 6. As a child, my parents took me to Skoghalls BGK for the first time and I was immediately hooked and the next day I wanted to come back and keep playing.

Q: What led you to become a professional mini golf player and what challenges did you encounter along the way?
A: I have been interested in sports all my life and have basically tried every sport that involves some type of ball. When I first tried mini golf, I was already interested in football and hockey and even at that age I liked to spend time actively. I always challenge myself in sports and always have, and if I don't feel like I can be good at something, I just stop doing it. I think mini golf was a sport that I felt I could be good at, and that motivated me to train really hard to become a professional mini golfer.

Q: Could you talk about your most memorable victory and why it was so important to your career?
A: For the first 15 years of my career I played as a left-sided player, but after 15 years I couldn't do it anymore. I played so badly that I finished last in a competition with at least 60 participants at the start. My score was so high that I couldn't just hit the ball straight, so when I was on the last hole in the last round and I tried to beat the hole in three shots, but I couldn't, so I asked one of the players I was playing with if I could borrow his right-handed club for my fourth shot, and he laughed and of course said yes, and when I made my fourth shot, I hit it right into the hole, and that's when I decided I would either stop playing mini-golf or go from left to right, and so I did. Two months after the change, I was back on the same field where I had previously been in last place, and this time I played like a demon and won the tournament in great style. The first time I was there I had a six-round average of 58 strokes, and this time I averaged 27 strokes over I think seven rounds and it changed my career. These are two tournaments that I always remember, the third being the Uppsala 2023 World Championships.

Secrets of Success
Q: What strategies and techniques have helped you achieve success in mini golf?
A: I've been playing mini golf for 42 years with no holds barred and over the years I've played both sides and my technique has changed several times and I'm always working on it to get it perfect. I'm still not where I want to be, I'm still not satisfied with my technique. I think it's all in your head whether you will be a good mini golfer or not. To be successful, you must believe in what you do. When you start playing bad, you have to make a small change that you believe in for the bad play to turn around and good play to start again.

Q: What advice would you give to young players dreaming of winning the championship?
A: Train, train, then train more. I practice a lot in my career, and when it comes to competitions, I have been in many situations where the final holes of a tournament are approaching and the scores are even for the players I am playing with. You know, when your pulse gets higher and you can feel every heartbeat, that's when you have to do it. You need to practice these moments many times until you can control your nerves. Remember to focus on the right things and always believe in yourself.

Reflections on the World Championships
Q: How do you remember the last World Championship where you won the title? How did you assess your chances before the tournament?
A: The title I won in Uppsala was the one title I had dreamed of my entire mini golf career. I knew I had a chance to win, but I didn't think I could beat Carl-Johan Ryner on his home course, and he showed in the preparations before the championship that he knows these holes. Moreover, the player who did really well was Alexander Princis, so if you had asked me before the championship who I would have chosen as the winner, I would definitely have said Carl-Johan or Alexander. I was already close to the title at previous championships, for example in Bad Münder in 2013. I finished 3rd, only 2 strokes away from gold and with a "five" on the "Örkelljunga" hole in the last round. So I knew I had it in me, but honestly, I didn't think it would be my season this year. I'm glad I was wrong

Discipline Development
Q: What innovations or changes would you see in mini golf to make it even more attractive around the world?
A: It would be great if mini golf became an Olympic sport. Besides, if we could find more serious sponsors, so that our sport could be better shown, for example on TV, so that more people could see that minigolf is a really serious sport for everyone.

Q: What can be improved in the organization of tournaments to make them more attractive?
A: As I said in the previous question, we need to show the world that mini golf is a serious sport and the only way to do that is to popularize mini golf and get us into the Olympics and make sure our sport is broadcast live on TV. I think it's really fun to watch mini golf when we have a good TV crew broadcasting the championships live.

Preparation and Routine
Q: What does your typical training day look like?
A: Before I go to a tournament, I always get information about the course I'm going to, so I have some guidance on what balls I need to take with me. Once I get to the course where I will be practicing, I start practicing each hole and making sure I find the perfect ball. Once I do this, I practice finding spots on the holes to aim for and practice getting the best feel possible to ultimately know whether when I hit the ball the shot will be perfect or not. You need to practice enough to know when a shot is good and when it's bad.

Q: Do you have any pre-tournament or pre-shot rituals that help you stay focused?
A: I try to play as much as possible before a bigger tournament to make sure I'm as prepared as possible. I don't have any rituals. I just focus on doing what I came to do - "to win."

Behind the Scenes
Q: What are your favorite mini golf memories outside of competition?
A: I will always remember when I first made the Swedish national team in 2008 in Tampere, Finland. Meeting and seeing all the big names in the world of mini golf was a really great experience for me. For example, to finally meet the Erlbruch brothers. The second positive memory was the world championship in Zhouzhuang - in China, the first championship outside Europe, this tournament will remain in my memory forever.

Q: What are your passions outside of mini golf?
A: What I like most is spending time with my family, my partner Cathrine and my two daughters: eight-year-old Othilia and sixteen-year-old Holly. In my free time, I also love riding a motorcycle and playing computer games in the evenings.

The Future
Q: What are your plans for the future?
A: My plans now, after this achievement, are to win more medals, especially the European Championships. I finished second on the men's team and would love to win a gold medal for my team. And also when it comes to the individual game, it would be great to win an individual medal at the European Championships. I have other goals for my club Skoghalls BGK to get into the Champions League and win a gold medal. Second place is our best result so far.

Q: Do you intend to continue your mini golf career or do you have other goals you would like to achieve?
A: I have been playing mini golf for 42 years, and this year in 2024 I will be celebrating my 43rd year of my career, and I have no intention of giving up the game now that I have finally achieved my greatest goal. Now my career really begins.

Tips and Tricks
Q: Could you share your thoughts on what is most important in playing mini golf? A: Teammates and team play are the most important thing in mini golf for me. Maintaining friendships in the mini golf community. My good friends in the sport motivate me to continue playing mini golf at a professional level.

Q: What advice would you give to Polish players to improve their level of play?
A: Keep training and don't be afraid to ask for help from countries that are at a higher level. I mean, for example, if a Pole came to me in Uppsala asking for advice, I wouldn't hesitate to help. Therefore, my advice is not to be afraid to ask for help, we are only human like everyone else.

Mental and Physical Aspects of Minigolf

Q: How do you maintain a high mental level during tournaments?
A: Eat throughout the tournament and focus on positive things between rounds - try not to dig yourself into a bigger hole if you're after a bad round. Try to see what you can do better in the next round and keep telling yourself that you can do it.

Q: Do you have a favorite course type?
A: No, I don't have a favorite type of mini golf course and I like them all. They are all different and each course requires a different type of ball or a specific shot to make the perfect putt. I think the key to becoming a better player is to be good on every type of golf course.

Preferences and Habits
Q: Do you have a favorite mini golf ball?
A: My favorite ball at the moment is the Fredrik Persson BOF 2017, a light blue ball that is a really good ball for straight holes on the felt. The reason is that the ball is not temperature sensitive, it is just a perfect ball.

Q: What are your favorite foods to eat before and during a tournament to save energy, but not burden your stomach?
A: I don't eat anything specific, I just make sure I don't eat junk food, and on tournament days I try to eat salads during the day and more regular food in the evening.

Future Travel Plans
Q: As the Polish Minigolf Association, we cordially invite you to our tournaments. Can we expect your visit to Poland in the near future?
A: This sounds really interesting! I've never been to Poland before and it would be nice to go there for the first time and take part in a tournament. Send me an invite and we'll see if it's on my schedule.

» Original Interview
» World Championships Wrap-Up Article




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Sweden 29 Mar 2024 at 11:49 | PatPenguin
Interview with Ulf Kristiansson

World 08 Mar 2024 at 19:50 | PatPenguin
Celebrating International Women's Day!

Czech Republic 12 Feb 2024 at 15:14 | PatPenguin
Adventure Golf Tournament Updates

United Kingdom 10 Nov 2023 at 12:50 | PatPenguin
Foul Play at the Seaview Hotel - Interview with Glenda Young

United States of America 16 Oct 2023 at 13:27 | PatPenguin
Gary Hesters Grabs First USPMGA Masters Tournament

Sweden 11 Oct 2023 at 12:54 | PatPenguin
2023 World Championships General Class Held in Sweden

Italy 17 Aug 2023 at 14:07 | PatPenguin
German Domination at the Youth European Championships

Austria 03 Jul 2023 at 13:10 | PatPenguin
Women of WAGM 2023 - A Perspective from Vanette Block

Sweden 29 Jun 2023 at 12:39 | PatPenguin
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Austria 20 Jun 2023 at 13:26 | PatPenguin
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United States of America 06 May 2023 at 14:10 | PatPenguin
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