Whether you are looking to pick up a new hobby or need an effective way to network, golfing is a great choice. It is an easy sport to pick up, but difficult to master. That means you can show up with little knowledge and expect to have a fun day, but also quickly realize you have plenty to learn. While golf is a great sport, it does come with some expectations. You will undoubtedly want to prepare yourself so you don’t look like a total newbie on the golf course.
What To Wear
Golf is different than many sports in that you are expected to dress nicely, but you still need to have a full range of motion. You will also want to wear clothing that is appropriate for the weather. Traditionally, men’s golf apparel was conservative. Although there are still expectations in what you should wear, you can often carve out your own style with quirky tops or interesting color combinations. Don’t get too adventurous, as men’s golf apparel generally dictates to wear a shirt with a collar, long pants, and socks. Don’t forget golf shoes, which are designed to provide support and traction while you are golfing. If you’re a woman, the golf apparel standards are generally the same, though many women will wear a pencil skirt or khaki capris instead of pants. If you’re totally out of ideas, look up pictures of famous golfers to use as a style guide.
Getting together clubs for your first round of golf can be daunting. If you have a friend to borrow from, you can postpone the pressure until you are more experienced. If you are putting together your own set, however, just get some basics and expand as you learn more about the game. To get started, you probably want a driver, a putter, two woods, two wedges, seven irons, and a hybrid. This should give you plenty of options out on the course. You can often find beginner sets already put together and affordably priced. Keep in mind that you are allowed to carry up to 14 clubs and no more, so try to pick out your favorites as you learn.
Working on Your Swing
Having the right clubs won’t do you much good if you don’t know how to use them. You can make your first few golf trips more enjoyable by hitting the driving range and putting green ahead of time. There is no need to dive right into a full game; learn to hit the ball and get accustomed to the feel of your clubs before you try to cover the entire course. Be sure to do some research on what each club does, and check out YouTube videos of how to swing. Seeing the swing in person is really the best way to learn to mimic it, so talking to a golf expert, either a friend you know or one you meet at a driving range will really help your technique.
Informal Rules of the Game
Golf has a reputation as being stuffy and formal. While that is not necessarily true, it is true that golf does have quite a few etiquette guidelines that you will be expected to observe. The idea is to create an atmosphere of relaxation and getting away from the stress of the outside world. To maintain that, be sure to leave your cell phone and other electronic devices at least in your bag, and ideally in your car. Also, to avoid backing up other’s games, keep moving on the course. You shouldn’t waste time hanging out around the hole, especially if you’re still knocking the ball around repeatedly when everyone else in your group has gotten it into the hole. Tee times are scheduled tightly, so it doesn’t take much for the course to get backed up. For this reason, it is also important to be at the course, ready to play, at your tee time. As a beginner, you should use the tee marker that is closest to the hole and work your way out from there.
Golf is a great sport. It is a good way to get exercise, enjoy the outdoors, and socialize. It does, however, take time and technique to master. Getting started can be daunting, but it’s much more fun if you go in prepared. Get your clubs, get your clothes, and get some basic practice in before you take on the putting green and you’ll be starting the game with your best foot forward.
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