We would like to welcome Joonas Granberg to the Forenom Rohkea Ratkaisija club. Our company has traditionally awarded those employees who bravely find solutions to daily problems. But now we are expanding this tradition so that we can find new inspirational people who are not afraid to make brave decisions. Joonas Granberg had the biggest breakthrough moment of his career when he won the Asia Tour in 2011. We believe so firmly in his bright future that we put together a sponsorship for his upcoming season. I interviewed Joonas and tried to understand where he currently stands and what have been the factors behind his success.
Name: Joonas Granberg
Profession: Pro golfer
Height/ weight: 175 cm / 79 kg
Place of residence: Hyvinkää
Joonas, how did you become excited about golf?
I probably started because of my dad, who has played golf now for about 40 years. I went along as his caddie when I was about the same size as his bag. When I was 15 years old, I participated in my first SM (Finnish pro league) tournament in Lahti. When I ended up in 4th place, I became even more motivated and I began to think that I could continue to do this. I also played youth hockey in the B division, but in the end golf won out.
Who is responsible for your practicing?
am. I don’t have a practice schedule because this isn’t rocket science. I usually build my practices around how I feel, but I can follow my progress by paying attention to whether or not I’m repeating the same type of training. My coach and I have more of a consultant-like relationship – we train together once every other week.
What do you see as being your strengths and weaknesses?
My technique probably has to be counted as a weakness, because it’s not by the book and it can cause a bit of additional stress at times. However, my strength is that in difficult places I can be sharp without becoming too stressed. I prefer to think that now I have an opportunity to show what I’m made of.
What tips would you give to hobby golfers?
Well, I would say that you should enjoy yourself more and not beat yourself up so much over mistakes, since we’re talking about a hobby. Even pros make mistakes, and if you decide to start changing your swing, for example, it’s going to take a long time. You won’t even be able to hit the ball, if you try to change your technique during the 15 times that you play golf during the summer. It was a half-year project for me, and I still can’t say that the change has been dramatic. It pays to pay attention to the basic things, meaning your stance, grip and aim. Even if your handicap is 5, you might be way off with the first two factors.
What about beginners?
To beginners I would say hold a golf club the same way you would a hammer; if you’re holding it wrong, you won’t be able to swing it. During practice an alignment stick is helpful. Set the stick on the ground, point it in the direction that you are hitting, stand in the same direction as the stick and hit. Golf is an incredibly difficult sport as it requires nerves and repetition.
What does your support group mean for you?
It’s very important, because sports have a lot of ups and downs. My girlfriend, coach, physical trainer, closest friends and parents are a large part of my daily life. I greatly appreciate the fact that my girlfriend understands my entrepreneur-type schedule and doesn’t send me text messages saying, “Come home already.” I might train for 6-8 hours, and then I have to bring my receipts to my accountant and take care of, for example, working together with sponsors. This type of daily life is far from special; it’s full of work.
Who is your example?
Kimi Räikkönen. Because he says things the way they are. I don’t say things straight either just to be an idiot, but because I appreciate authenticity and honesty. Because of this, sometimes there are 5-minute breaks during conversations with my girlfriend, but now she’s caught on since we’ve been together for a year.