Monday, May 23, 2011

Easy Golf?

John Paul Newport, one of Golf's weakest writers in the Weekend Edition of Wall Street Journal opined that we should find an easier game to play and gave several silly ideas listed in the linked article. There is one and one alone good way in there and it was not given its due.

Important facts in
A) Growing the game
B) Keeping players

1) Play a golf course you can enjoy.
a)You are not good enough to putt on Stimp 12 greens. Stop demanding it, you can't handle it. Public CCFAD's please stop delivering it. It will cut your costs, too.
b) The Clint Eastwood approach to golf* - "A Man's got to know his limitations" play the correct set of tees for your ability. If you want to get better pay attention.
c) De-label the "Ladies Tees" to Forward Tees". Put in an even shorter set for little kids, beginners, really old and disable people. Do not dumb them down but make them fun, they are NOT an after thought.
d) (OK, an expansion or another version of b)) Play up a set of tees, hit greens in regulation, make birdies - THEN move back and do it a tee or two at a time. Play Par 5's you CAN reach occasionally in two. Par 4's you can drive. Par 3's you can hit wedge or 9iron.
e) Course operators - give beginners a break, charge them less. Maybe the USGA can get involved and issue beginners Handicap Cards and courses can respect these if the holders play fast.
f) Good God! We can ALL play faster. No, not a track meet, but faster through courtesy of being ready and respectful.

No need to change the game that has endured at least 700 years more or less as it is just because young healthy specimens are getting super-fit (and more) and taking the most advantage of "Game Improvement Clubs". Unfortunately, the USGA Handicap system (GHIN) is flawed, that's for another time.

2) Forget Professional Golf - especially the Men's - when you play it is irrelevant to you.

3) Play as if you had to follow yourself (see 1-f)

E-N-J-O-Y yourself and play the real game of golf.

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