Why Tiger Woods lost
For the past eight months before today’s loss in the World Golf Championships- Accenture Match, champion Tiger Woods had been recovering from a knee injury. He told several reporters that he enjoyed the time spent at home. More than ever before, he got to hang out with his pregnant wife, Elin, and their two-year-old daughter Sam Alexis. Earlier this month Elin gave birth to a son, Charlie Axel.
Tiger’s ignominious loss today could be attributed to the possibility that he’s out of practice. Maybe his knee was still acting up (although he said it felt fine). Perhaps he hasn’t been getting enough sleep, or he had an off day. But there’s another theory: it’s hormonal. It could well be that Tiger’s testosterone levels are down.
That would certainly be the case if Tiger Woods is like the many loving husbands and dads participating in studies by medical anthropologist Peter Gray at the University of Nevada. As discussed in BLONDES, studies have shown that men’s testosterone levels take a nosedive when they’re in serious, committed relationships. Spending time at home in the comfort of a loving relationship can do the trick.
When a child is born, a dad’s circulating testosterone may be at an all-time low. Gray and his colleagues have seen this effect in dads all over the world. Lower testosterone levels make a man less aggressive, less focused and competitive — and more agreeable and responsive. Even holding a baby doll can make expectant father’s testosterone levels plummet. If Tiger’s T-levels are lower, it’s good news for his newborn son but bad news for his game. From an evolutionary perspective, newborn Charlie Axel is manipulating Tiger’s hormone levels so he’ll be a better dad.
Of course, little does Mother Nature know that when Dad’s a professional athlete, it’s best to leave his hormones well enough alone.