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The impact of pressure on performance: Evidence from the PGA TOUR

Daniel C. Hickman and Neil E. Metz

Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 2015, vol. 116, issue C, 319-330

Abstract: Do large rewards lead to psychological pressure causing underperformance? Previous studies have tested this ‘choking’ phenomenon using the world of sports, but such studies often lack an explicit link between performance and reward. This study utilizes a large PGA TOUR dataset to more directly analyze the effect of pressure on individual performance by calculating the potential change in earnings from making or missing a putt on the final hole of a tournament. We find that as the amount of money riding on a shot increases, the likelihood that shot is made is significantly reduced.

Keywords: Choking; Psychological pressure; Performance incentives; D03; J33; L83 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2015
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