The Impact of Pressure on Performance: Evidence from the PGA Tour
39 Pages Posted: 13 Aug 2014 Last revised: 23 Feb 2015
Date Written: February 2015
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
JEL Classification: D03, J33, L83
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation