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Two weeks before November in a large part of the U.S. means anything and everything but golf weather. Even in the south, it’s really cooled off to the point where morning frosts are now common.
In other words, counting on cooperative weather that will encourage your desire to play is going to be iffy at best for the next several months. However, that doesn’t mean you don’t still want to play. You love the game and love staying involved. So what to do?
Here are some ideas.
Join A Golf Club
I don’t mean a private club necessarily, although that is certainly a viable option as well. But there are countless golf clubs throughout the U.S. I was fortunate to have been a member of the Oglebay Golf Club when I lived in Wheeling, WV. The Oglebay Golf Club is one of the oldest clubs in the U.S., having been in existence since 1939, and has well over 200 members. One of the high points of the golf year was the first meeting in February. Without question, that Sunday afternoon meeting is held when it is cold and snowy outside but it was the first indication that golf season was in sight.
The point is, find a golf club this winter. Google golf clubs in your geographic area. Call your local club and see if they have contacts for clubs in your area. You’ll meet some new golfers, and will have a network of fellow linksters to complain to regarding how bad the weather is!
Talk To The Experts
It’s 40 degrees and raining outside. You can’t practice, and it looks like the week is a washout. What can you do?
Go talk to your golf staff. I mentioned the Oglebay group above. There are three eighteen-hole courses under the Oglebay Resort umbrella, so there is a staff with various managers at the courses. In your case, for a typical eighteen-hole course, you know who your pro is. Give him/her a call and ask if you can run by and chat. They may well welcome the break from taking inventory. Ask what they recommend for your game. Ask what new equipment is coming out. Just chat. See if they have any thoughts or takeaways.
There are numerous YouTube videos on how to build an indoor putting station. If you have a basement, or a portion of the garage that can accommodate a putting green, built an indoor station for a few hundred bucks of materials.
As we all know, shaving putting strokes is the fastest way to lower a handicap. And when it’s 8 degrees outside (who cares if it’s above or below zero, 8 degrees it too damn cold), being able to work on your golf game without leaving the house is a major bonus.
Inspect Your Clubs
I don’t mean just counting them to make sure they are all present and accounted for. Although that’s important also. I mean doing a thorough inspection. Clean the grooves. Clean the grips. Better yet, replace the grips if you haven’t done that in the last year or two.
And while you’re at it, clean out your bag. Dedicate an hour, and crank up some favorite tunes. Aw, hell, shoot the moon and pour yourself a single malt and re-establish a relationship with your entire assemblage of golf accoutrements. Inspect your entire bag using a fine tooth comb (notice how no one ever says wide tooth comb? Yeah, me either). Wipe down your bag. Clean out the ball pockets. Toss out that banana that you forget was in there.
Taking an hour to dedicate to your clubs when the weather is frightful will help you feel delightful.
There are another dozen or more ideas, and every golfer I know has their own special routines when it comes to staying involved in the winter. Volunteering for the First Tee program or a local high school golf team is always an option. Reviewing lessons online or pulling out your file of golf tips and lessons and reading through them helps keep you golf sharp. Doing some golf shopping for the latest pair of shoes, or an off-season sale on shorts that will be waiting for you when April rolls around is always fun.
Anything you do that is part of your routine? Feel free to share here and online on Twitter and Facebook. As always, thanks for reading, and enjoy Shooting Your Age!