If you ask us, golf is the perfect place to while away a Sunday morning. There’s nothing better than teeing off early, enjoying a long round, and unwinding in the clubhouse afterwards. Perfect. Now, I’ve taken my fair share of newbies around the golf course, with varying success! It can feel intimidating taking your first round of golf. After all, it’s a bit of a men’s club out there. There are rules and etiquette to follow, and hitting the ball first-time isn’t as easy as it looks! In this post, I’ve compiled a few tips for beginners on their first tee time.
Choose the right course
For me, this is the single most important thing when teeing off for the first time. Every course is different, and each has its own nuances. Some courses are devilishly difficult, with tons of water hazards, long fairways, and tricky greens. A beginner is likely to have a nightmare on a course like this, and they’ll give up for good. You’re looking for a good starter course that is enjoyable, but playable. I like the Black Diamond Course at Healy; it’s a short 9-hole course with a 34 par. It’s perfect for beginners. Read about this, and find out more at their website.
Attire and equipment
Some golf courses are very strict about their dress codes. So, do ensure that you contact the course beforehand, and double check the code. Typically, a collared polo shirt and slacks is the general dress code, and jeans may be prohibited. A reliable golf shoe will help you on the course, and may also be required by the club. As for the clubs, it’s usually worth hiring them on your first round. Don’t fill your bag full of 14 clubs. Stick to a couple of irons, a wedge, a putter, and a couple of numbered woods.
Take a team of four
Every golf course likes to keep a steady flow of traffic (more on this next). That means they prefer groups of four, as they can get more people on the course. If you turn up as a pair, they might team you up with another pair on the way round. As a newbie, that might make you feel a little more uncomfortable. It’s best to start with a group of four that all knows each other. They’ll have a little more patience when you’re on your sixth double bogey of the day!
As I mentioned in the last point, the course likes to keep a steady flow of traffic. With that in mind, golf etiquette is all about keeping up with the guys in front of you. More importantly, it’s about not holding up the people behind you. Golf courses like to keep a flow, so try to keep up. Golfers are pretty patient about poor shots or hitting out of turn. But, if you slow down the game, you’ll start to irritate the other players!
Follow these basic rules, and you’ll have a fantastic first round of golf. Who knows, you might just become addicted to the great game!