Should you play through winter?

Brave the cold or hibernate still spring?

Charlie Lemay's picture
Thu, 4 Dec 2014

Golf is a summer sport but that doesn’t stop thousands of players teeing it up over the winter months. In contrast, many lock their clubs away until spring and hibernate, viewing those who battle through the festive season as deranged eccentrics.

The professionals  do not have this problem. The PGA Tour travels to the states baked in sun and the European Tour heads to Africa and Asia. Players who toil on the smaller tours, which stop through the winter, will often travel to warmer regions to continue their preparation for the following season in perfect conditions.

This leads us to the question; what should the average golfer be doing over the winter?

Broadly speaking, there are three options: persevere on the course, head inside to the driving range or hibernate until spring.

Those who bravely continue, like surfers heading out in arctic water, will look unrecognisable from the player lacing it up in July. Mummified in Gore-tex and sporting comical bobble hats, they will have to content with temporary greens, freezing conditions and zero roll. However, they will be playing golf the way it was intended, off the green green grass of home and they will not be waiting behind the couple playing like it is Sunday at Augusta.

Heading inside may be the wise choice but it necessitates a patient player as hitting from a mat for months on end can bore even the most enthusiastic hacker. But this provides the perfect environment to improve you swing, with coaches on hand and technology at your fingertips. Expensive - yes - but when you tee it up at the start of the season with a new faultless swing, money will seem insignificant.

But what about jacking it all in together? Golf in the winter is miserable at times and there is the option of improving your game from the comfort of your living room with a roaring fire in the background. 

Carl Watts, former European Tour player and teaching professional at Mannings Heath.“I’d go as far to say that practice is almost useless if you don’t know what you’re doing,” said Watts.

“Instead you can sit down and have a glass of water, or glass of wine, and go through your routines, your processes, to try and embed it.”

“People are so worried about where their ball is going, they don’t think about the process. It may sound boring but boring golf equals exciting scores.”

We want to know what you will be doing this winter. Will you valiantly be heading out to the course, heading to the driving range with a coach to hibernating till spring?

 

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