Lent is the 40 day period between Ash Wednesday and Thursday 13th of April where people typically give up something like chocolate, alcohol, coffee etc. However, since we are a golf blog we aren’t going to help you choose what food or bad habit you should give up this year but instead suggest five annoying things that get under every golfer’s skin that we all do and should give up for lent.

Number 1 – Not shouting ‘FORE’

Shouting ‘FORE’ if you hit a shot off line is something every golfer should do in order to ensure those around them are as safe as possible. People give this shout to alert those on other fairways, greens, tee boxes or pathways a verbal warning that a golf ball is flying in their direction and therefore they know to duck and cover. Most of the time, amateur golfers will always shout after hitting an errant shot but sadly it has always been a more prominent problem in the professional game. Pros often won’t shout fore in the hope that their ball will hit a spectator and stay in play with the intention of giving them a signed glove or ball as compensation. Giving a cry of fore is done for safety reasons and for those of you who don’t do it, give that up for lent and shout at the top of you lungs after you hit your next slice or hook.

Pat Perez hitting another spectator just a few holes later.

Number 2 – Trying To Be a Coach

Another thing that every golfer should give up for lent is trying to be a coach. There is nothing more annoying for a golfer than after having just sliced or hooked a shot than to turn round and hear your partner’s voice saying “I used to have that problem, let me give you a few tips”, and then he goes into a full on explanation. All you want to do after hitting a bad shot is go to your to bag, give the turf a little kick, put your bag on your shoulders and trudge up to try and find the ball. Not, stand there listen to your mate tell you how your feet weren’t aligned properly and how your swing plane meant your club-face was always going to be open on impact. If you are that playing partner out there, which let’s be honest (we all are) how about we all give that up for lent.

Number 3 – Saying “One”

One of the most annoying things to happen to any golfer is when you tee your ball up, place the club-head behind the ball and the ball subsequently falls off. Now, this is infuriating for 2 reasons. The first is the hassle of having to bend down, adjust the tee and put the ball back on it but that can’t be helped; if you ball falls off you have to put it back. The real blood boiler is and the thing that every golfer and playing partner should give up for lent in this situation is saying “one” after the ball falls off. I don’t personally know anyone who doesn’t say this when their playing partner’s ball falls off the tee and in all honesty it is very funny to say, but when it is the other way round it becomes the most unoriginal and unfunny joke ever so why don’t we all pack that one liner away for lent.

Number 4 – Golf Rage

A bit of anger is something every sportsman exhibits especially in golf and showing frustration after a bad shot is always going to happen. However, there can’t be anything more awkward for a playing partner than when you are playing in a match against a couple of people you do not know and watching your mate hit a bad shot and then proceeding to strike his bag with the club better than he did the ball. But as Amy Alcott said “Keep your sense of humor. There’s enough stress in the rest of your life not to let bad shots ruin a game you’re supposed to enjoy.” So for all those who have a bit too much golf rage, maybe you should give that up for lent because at the end of the day it is just a game.

Number 5 – Complaining About Slow Play

You’ll very rarely go a full 18 holes these days without at some point having to stop and wait for the group ahead to clear the way for you to safely continue your game.

You’ll also very rarely go a full 18 holes without at least one member of your fourball having a bit of a whinge about it.

There are lots of cliches golfers have accepted as gospel over the years and the magic 4 hour mark (and in extreme cases the 3 hour round) is one of the most misleading. It’s a real troublemaker in fact.

Now we’re not saying a round of golf should take much longer than that to play. But the biggest problem with “slow play” is actually golfer’s perceptions of what “slow” actually is, as well as the unrealistic targets we set ourselves.

We have done much research on slow play, so click here to find out more about slow play and how to prevent one of golf’s biggest pitfalls

1) For the game to continue to “grow” as the buzz word states, golf courses need to be fully booked rather than closing at a record rate.

2) Golf is a really hard game at the best of times. On the bad days though, it can be a real slog and the higher your score, the longer it’ll take to play.

3) ALL golfers play the game at different speeds and that’s not even down to some having over-complicated pre-shot routines. Ability, age, group size all play a part.

4) Unless you’re lucky to catch the course on a quiet day; hold ups are inevitable. The sooner golfers accept this and take some time to smell the roses along the way, rather than sprinting round courses in an attempt to adhere to unrealistic “speeds of play”, and of course getting all hot and bothered when they come to a halt, the better.

Nick Martin

Nick Martin

Member of South Herts Golf Club, playing off a handicap of 3. Have played golf in over 10 countries and look forward to playing more in my role with YGT's marketing department.

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