It’s our championship weekend and since it’s played rain or shine (in safe conditions, not thunderstorms or other violent weather) some thoughts on playing in less than perfect conditions are appropriate. Anyone who watches the pro tour knows that the players have learned how to handle some very adverse weather. Harvey Pennick, the noted golf instructor at the University of Texas and the Austin Country club often said that some of the best players on the tour came from west Texas because they knew how to play in the wind and rain. I’m sure that there are many Scots who would rank their own amongst the best in less than ideal conditions. Regardless, wind and rain pose major challenges to most of us, especially when we consider that many of us would cancel a game rather than play in inclement weather.
Playing in the rain
This is where some appropriate equipment helps players manage the elements. First on the list is to be comfortable, wear a rain jacket that will at least keep your torso dry, a full rain outfit is also appropriate for really wet days. An umbrella helps to keep you reasonably dry as you wind your way around the course but don’t forget to keep your clubs dry as well. Carry a towel, to wipe the grips as well the club heads before you make contact with the ball. Rain gloves are a must for persistent wet conditions. They’re made of a special material that allows for firm contact with the grips of your clubs.
Technique is also a consideration in playing in wet conditions. Here’s a quote from Jack Nicklaus’ book ‘Lesson Tee’ published in 1978 regarding playing in wet weather “Rhythm and tempo take on extra importance when you’re being bullied by the elements. With rain running down your neck, you subconsciously risk hurrying both your setup and your swing. In those circumstances I try to make a conscious effort to get properly settled over the ball, then to swing as smoothly and fully as possible. Two of my key thoughts at such times are: make a deliberate takeaway and complete the backswing.”
It often also helps to consider going up one club, instead of an 8 iron, try a 7. For a comprehensive list of 10 tips to play in the rain by club pro Keri Moffat of Mayfair Lakes in Richmond BC (where rain is always a consideration) click here:
Tips For Playing In The Rain.
Adjusting to Wind
Windy conditions are really tricky for almost all of us. Wind is never constant, as you make your way around the course, the wind will come from several different directions. The classic aphorism for hitting golf shots on windy days is ‘swing easy when it’s breezy’. Basically you need to control the flight of the ball as well as spin, so keeping it lower is a must. Here’s a you-tube video that helps to explain how to hit the ball on windy days:
Tips For Playing On Windy Days.
Another great read that might assist you is Robert Keyes' newest Straight Ahead article. Click to read "Low & Close". Though articles and videos are a great addition for your golfing life, nothing beats live instruction. If you haven’t had a lesson in a while, anytime is a good time to have one. We have Robert Keyes of Keystroke Golf Academy working with us as well as the Prince Edward Golf Practice Facility close by. For more information about Robert Keyes and Keystroke Golf Academy, click here, or visit our website. Golf is always more fun when we play well and the help of a professional is the best way to learn the game and to refine your technique.
Once our Club Championships are behind us, it is time to relax and enjoy some fun social golf! Our new Eric Reynolds Summer’s End Golf Day & BBQ is on Sunday August 28th and is just the ticket to round out our golfing summer. If you have not already registered your 2-person team, deadline to sign up is this Sunday August 14th. Click here for more details.
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