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GOLF

Source: Outdoor Sports and Games
Category: WOODCRAFT





The game of golf, while of comparatively recent introduction in this
country, has sprung rapidly into popularity. It is hard to say just
why it should be such a popular game except that it combines a certain
amount of healthful outdoor exercise with an unlimited opportunity for
skill, and in addition to this, unlike the more violent games, it can
be joined in by old as well as young. The proper construction and
maintenance of a golf course is an expensive proposition. A private
course is altogether out of the question except for the very wealthy.
A club in starting with a limited amount of money will find it more
satisfactory to begin with the construction of a nine-hole or even a
six-hole course rather than to attempt a full course of eighteen holes
which will be indifferently constructed or kept up. The average
eighteen-hole course is about three miles long and is built according
to the general lay of the land. A hole in golf consists in the stretch
between the "tee," from which the ball is knocked off, and the
"putting green," where the player "putts" the ball into the "hole"--a
can sunk into the ground which has about the same diameter as a
tomato can. The score consists in the number of strokes required to
make the hole, and of course the player making the fewest number of
strokes is the winner of the hole or match.

[Illustration: Addressing]

[Illustration: At the top of the swing]

[Illustration: Just before the ball is struck]

Golf has but few rules. The secret of playing well consists in being
able to swing the clubs with accuracy and precision. There is no game
where proper form counts for more and none in which more careful
preliminary instruction by an expert is so important. If one can at
the very outset obtain the services of a professional or a skilful
player for a few lessons, it will do far more good than ten times as
many lessons after we have contracted bad habits which will have to be
unlearned.

[Illustration: How An Expert Plays Golf]

The surest way to be a poor golfer is first to think that it is a
sort of "old man's game," or, as one boy said, "a game of knocking a
pill around a ten-acre lot"; then when the chance to play our first
game comes along to do it indifferently, only to learn later that
there is a lot more to the skill of a good player than we ever
realized. Another very common mistake is to buy a complete outfit of
clubs, which a beginner always improperly calls "sticks," before we
really know just what shape and weight of club is best adapted to our
needs.

[Illustration: A good outfit of clubs for golf]

The common clubs in most players' outfits consist of a driver,
brassie, cleek, iron, and putter. We can add to this list almost
indefinitely if we wish, as there are all sorts of clubs made for
various shots and with various angles. The game of golf consists in
covering a certain fixed course in the fewest number of shots. We
shall have to practise both for distance and accuracy. The first few
shots on a hole of average length will give us an opportunity for
distance. This is especially true of the first shot, or drive, but
after that we make what are known as approach shots--that is to say,
we are approaching the putting green where we complete the hole by
"putting" the ball into the tin cup sunk into the ground. On the green
we shall need to be very careful, as a stroke wasted or poorly played
counts just as much against our score if the ball goes only a few feet
as if we sliced or "foozled" our drive.

In scoring for golf there are two methods: Either the score of each
hole is taken and the winner of a majority of holes wins the match, or
the total score in counted as in "medal" or "tournament play."

"Bogie score" is a fictitious score for the course that is supposed to
denote perfect playing without flukes or luck. The mysterious "Colonel
Bogie" is an imaginary player who always makes this score.





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