Are You Sure You Want To Golf?

I sometimes wonder if golf is a universal sport designed for all athletes. Don’t get we wrong, golfers are athletes. Like all professional and amateur sports the higher level of play (or elite players) have a combination of athletic ability and a passion to excel on the links. This combination is nothing new, but in golf, it seems that the stakes are higher because of the frustration level of trying to achieve a high level of play. With the combination of so many factors, I often wonder why beginners take golf thinking that this sport is fun and easily mastered!

There is a bit of tongue and cheek commentary in the opening paragraph, yet I do think that of all the sports I learned over the years, golf is by far the most difficult. I think of my skill at this time and I am better than average, yet not even close to what I consider to be a high level player. Through the years of play, I devoted many hours to practice (which I am riding on at this point in my career) that allowed me to move up the ranks of golfers in my local clubs and for that I am not disappointed. However, my passion to be a better player easily countered the frustration of trying to develop new skills. As my career lengthened, my ability to acquire new skills became more challenging and hence my practice time is much less than in years past.

I will play golf with anyone at any time. I still love to play and seek new adventures on the links. Yet, I often wonder why new players decide to pick up the sticks when I watch how frustrated they are while playing. I wonder why put yourself through all that disappointment when you could be doing something much easier with your time. I wonder why they would spend so much of their time and money to not have a sense of accomplishment when they walk of the 18th green.

There is one simple word to drives most golfers and that word is HOPE! It is a simple four letter word that drives most aspects of golf. It fuels passion, overrides frustration and offer a small flicker of light in the encompassing darkness of a golf round. Every round of golf I played, hope is the one constant that keeps bringing my back to the links regardless of my play during the last round. Every shot sparks an intangible feeling that this shot could be the next great one. It fuels my gratefulness that I found a sport that no matter what happens, I have the desire to return. Hope is my fuel and without it, golf would be another sport collecting dust in the corner of my garage.

Here is an example of shots I hope to emulate:

Golf is a fantastic sport. It does not talk to every athlete and nor should it! For those athletes that it does talk too, hope is a foundational feeling experienced during every swing. Personally, I am grateful I found golf and will continue to play it for the rest of my life. It is a passion that inspires hope every day.

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

2 thoughts on “Are You Sure You Want To Golf?

  1. Golf is very different than other sports, and for the vast majority, playing golf is more of a social game than a sport. After all, what other game can people ride around in carts and drink alcohol while they are playing. There is no doubt that some people approach the game as an athletic endeavour but it is a minority.

    What I love about golf is that it challenges me mentally more than it does athletically which makes a case for it being more of a game. The fact that I can still play reasonably well at 68 is unique. I sure cannot do as well at hockey and baseball now.

    Although being athletic is an asset in golf, having good golf skills is in my opinion is more important. For me, the mental challenge of dealing with the ups and downs is what intrigues me the most. Although I like to score well, it is of secondary importance to responding to the challenges of the day.

    Golf is also unique in how involved the equipment companies are in the game itself. They are the snake oil salesmen promising hope and so many golfers are trying to buy a game rather than developing their skills. I confess at times buying the latest magic wand only to realize that time spent on skills development was far more important.

    Since becoming involved in playing vintage golf equipment on a regular basis, I am happier and I believe a better golfer and I don’t need to obsess on score.

    Jim, I hope you are doing well. I took today off golf due to the weather and prepare for my move to temporary quarters next week. But tomorrow, my golf life resumes around noon.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lorne,

      Golf is a journey. You and I both know that as the path gets longer, we look for different things. I am in a transition stage that affords me the awesome opportunity to love scoring low and playing vintage golf. I still have the drive to play well, but I am loving the vintage aspect of playing golf. I am enjoying this new path and look forward to vintage golf next year.

      Cheers Jim

      Like

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