What is Golf?

What is golf?

What was started by shepherds hitting stones into rabbit holes with their crook has over the centuries developed in to a global super sport which has produced many great champions, legends and household names! Soon to become an Olympic sport, golf is played daily by millions of people worldwide. It is home of some of the most amazing landscapes and some of the planet’s most beautiful animals. Commercially it generates billions of pounds worldwide and also reinvests millions of pounds into numerous charities every year.

So what is all the fuss about? Please read on...

Like I mentioned above, golf was started centuries ago by shepherds in the sand dunes of Scotland, who took their crooks and tried to hit stones into various rabbit holes, the concept of golf was born. Today we complete the challenge on one of the millions golf course we have available by hitting the ball from the start area into the hole in the fewest amounts of shots as possible.

Firstly we must understand how to play each type of shot and know where and when to play it!

Here is a brief guide on the order of play from the start area which is call the 1st tee.

A long distance hole (quite difficult so let’s call this distance hole a Par 4). On a Par 4 hole, we play from a teeing zone to a fairway and from the fairway area to green.

A short distance hole (relatively easier than the above hole, so we'll call this hole a Par 3). On these distance holes we try to play from the tee straight onto the green.

Lastly, a very long hole (We call this a Par 5 hole). We go from tee to fairway, from fairway to another part of the fairway and finally from fairway to the green.

So we have three different types of holes in golf which make up a round of golf (9 or 18 holes).Each hole is also guarded with obstacles which we call hazards, avoid these at all costs! For your reference here are the possible hazards which protect the holes:

  • Water (the sea, lakes, ponds, rivers or streams). These hazards may also be dried up areas that during the season fill up with water.
  • Bunkers (sand or grass filled!
  • The boundaries of the course (out of bounds).

Generally you find the Water areas and out of bounds (OOB) marked by coloured lines or coloured wooden stakes. Water hazards are marked by red or yellow and OOB areas are white.

You'll also find that the course in particular the fairway and green areas will be protected by long grass called rough. We also try to avoid this area as it is very difficult to play from! So in a nutshell, that is the challenge and fun that golf has to offer! All of the above is needed to test you and make it fun! All of the above is what makes golf an enjoyable challenge and keeps us coming back for more.

So that’s the challenge explained. Next, how do we get the ball from the tee into the hole then? Surely we don’t just “WHACK” it? Well actually there is more to it that just brute force and ignorance. There are four basic skill shots we use:

(1) Rolling the ball into the hole, also known as putting. This is done on or just off THE GREEN (the closely mown area around the flag/hole. We play this shot with the putter which is a relatively flat faced (low lofted) club which comes in various shapes and sizes. The putting stroke is relatively simple as it has the fewest moving parts but believe it or not it's the hardest to master!

(2) As we progress further away from the hole (off the green) we can't putt any more because it's just too difficult or just too far, so with an IRON we play the next skill shot, a CHIP SHOT. A chip requires us to hit down onto the ball with a lofted loft to send the ball up into the air slightly (pop it up), land it on the green. It will then release forwards (roll) towards the hole. This skill is great from just off and around the green or maybe when you have a very short approach to an unguarded green.

(3) Moving further away from the green. For example, 30-100 yards away. We generally will find that a hazard (bunker or water) or even just natural ground undulations are blocking the way! So now we need to learn to play a shot which will fly the ball over all the hazards land it on the green and stop it close to the hole or even in it?! This type of shot is a PITCH SHOT (a 1/2 or 3/4 swing) played with a quite lofted club like a pitching wedge.

(4) Finally that leaves us with the last basic skill shot, the FULL SWING. From the fairway, teeing ground or anywhere else the ball might lay in bounds! Depending on the distance we choose the correctly lofted club or metal wood club (low lofted club) and play a full swing shot. Generally here we are playing towards a target area on the fairway or towards the green.

So there you have it, an education in one web page! Now you know why golf is so addictive! Maybe this now gives you some idea why your partner disappears for hours on end?! What we've explained on this page is the challenge or the fuel a golfer feeds on.

Trust us there is no sight so lovely, no sound so sweet and no sensation so pure than a sweetly struck golf ball.

Please continue to navigate our site, read on and we hope you enjoy!!

The Golf Made Simple Team.

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