Lightning on the Golf Course

Not sure this is the best idea of a metal building in a field as a shelter from a lightning storm!

As a golfer, one of our biggest fears is being caught in a lightning storm. For some, it is not the fact that being hit is very bad or dangerous to our health, but the fact they cannot finish their round. When talking about lightning, most of us over the age of 35 are thinking of the famous scene of Bill Murray and the Padre playing golfing in hurricane like conditions. Well, fortunately, I have never played in such conditions and never plan too. How about you? Continue reading

Are My Clubs In The Way?

How many times have we heard “Are My Clubs OK?”

While golfing with our friends, most of us are lax with the rules of etiquette.  Besides, it is more fun poking fun at our friends, telling jokes, and pretending that your friend does miss that four-foot gimmie (gimmie in their eyes, even though they have not made a four-footer all day).  However, during a competition, the way we play should be different and we should be more aware of the etiquette of golf because it is important.

On particular aspect of etiquette is club location while your opponent is playing. Equipment should be out of sight, not in the line of intended ball travel or close enough to cause a shadow over their ball.  Actually, these guidelines should apply to their clubs as well.

Are My Clubs OK?

Whats Wrong With This Picture?

There are many reasons for this particular rule (although rule might be a bit strong).

Safety. Standing forward of someone hitting the ball is not too smart.  But, it happens all the time.  Usually, the other members are across the fairway and move to their ball for speed of play.  Sometimes, however, they get to close and that is when a the safety aspect kicks in.

Penalty Strokes.  Keeping your clubs behind you will prevent penalty strokes (one stroke  for hitting your own equipment, caddie or partner – rule 19).  Ever wonder why the pro caddies move so far from the player when they are hitting…..probably for this exact reason.

Etiquette.  Standing in someones golf space can cause problems.  Some players like opponents to stand-off to their right.  Others left. Some behind….but never in front of their field of view.  My general rule for this is at least 10 – 15 feet away from the player.

So placing your clubs close to someone playing is not a very good idea.  Placing your own clubs in the way is just a bad idea.  One last point, if you have to as “Are My Clubs OK?” They are not!

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

Thunder and Lightning

Today was very interesting.  As I walked around the front nine, the weather was beautiful; the birds were singing; and the sun was beginning to rise.  It was the making of a beautiful day (well except for the 15 billion mosquitoes).  Walking towards the 10th hole it started.

Off in the distance, a low rumble was heard.  The clouds were getting dark, yet I hoped to squeeze the rest of the round in before the skies opened up.  All was going well although the rumbling was getting closer, but not a very fast pace.  As I walked off 13, it happened, a flash of lightning and a long low rumble of thunder.  Now the dilemma, should I stay or should I go?

Of course the correct answer is GO!  Lee Trevino has been hit by lightning several times.  He would say go as well.  Although Lee Trevino did say afterwards that if you get caught in a lightning storm hold a 1 iron over your head.  “Even god cannot hit a 1 iron”.  He is one of my favorite all time golfers.

Ultimately, it is not worth the risk.  On average, 44 people die from lightning strikes each year.  So my suggestion is that if the thunder and lightning are heading your way, do the smart thing and head to the club house and have a coffee.  Enjoy the links!