Sorenstam grew up in a golfing family-her mother and father are both good recreational players, and her younger sister Charlotta is also on the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Tour-but Annika's first sports love was tennis. Swedish tennis star of the late 1970s and early 1980s Bjorn Borg was her hero, and for seven years, starting at age five, Sorenstam tried to learn how to emulate him. She only turned to golf as a potential career when she was 12, but by age 14 she had joined the Swedish junior golf program.
Sorenstam's father worked for IBM when she was a child, and from him she acquired another enduring love: computers. She combines this passion with her golf by keeping detailed statistics of her rounds, as she has done since she was 14. By examining the charts and graphs that she created from her statistics, Sorenstam can easily see where the flaws in her playing are and work to improve them.
Sorenstam joined the Swedish national golf team in 1987, when she was still a teenager. There she fell under the influence of the team's coach, Pia Nilsson. Nilsson taught her players to think about golf with "54-vision": golfers should think that it is possible to birdie (shoot a score of one less stroke than par on a hole) every hole of a golf course and then should visualize themselves doing just that. No one has ever actually scored a 54, of course, but still, it was the goal her team was to shoot for.
Famous Sports StarsGolfAnnika Sorenstam Biography - Early Influences, Becoming A Professional, Two Historic Seasons, Chronology, Aiming For The Hall Of Fame - SELECTED WRITINGS BY SORENSTAM: