Maintaining golf form during winter can be difficult. Playing conditions change drastically from the way they are during the summer. This is why most golfers prefer to stay off the course once temperatures start dropping. Rather than giving up golf for several months and developing rust in the process, it is possible for golfers to beat the cold and enjoy the game during the winter months.
The basics of the game remain the same yet there are certain factors that require golfers to change technique and playing style, including:
- Feeling cold (obviously)
- Surface not being ideal for putting
- Provisional Tees (usually)
- Ball accumulating more dirt and grime
- Lack of distance on shots
To avoid shooting high scores and feeling physically uncomfortable during a round, golfers need to master playing in spite of the cold. Here are some effective tips.
Use Warm Golf Balls
Golf balls, especially the core, get harder in winter. This makes it difficult to achieve the distance golfers crave on certain shots. A simple technique to get around this is using warm golf balls. Now, one cannot barbecue golf balls, but one can put them on a radiator the night before going to the course. Also, keeping the balls in ones pocket when not in use will help preserve the warmth.
Not only should the golf ball be warm, it’s even more important to keep one’s body adequately warm as well. The cold can make it difficult to execute shots and can even cause injuries. Wearing thick socks, a sweater and thermal underwear is highly recommended. Walking as much as possible between shots and rubbing hands together regularly will help mitigate the cold conditions.
“Lift and Place”
The ‘Lift and Place’ rule is generally allowed at most golf courses. This rule allows golfers to lift the ball, clean it and then place it back on the fairway. This becomes more important during winter because dirt tends to stay stuck on the ball unless it’s lifted up and cleaned. Dirt affects both the flight of the ball as well as the ability to get a clean strike.
Don’t Under Club
Often, the combination of a cold golf ball, a cold golfer and cold wind makes it hard to achieve the desired distance on shots. One of the ways to overcome these issues is to use an extra club on shots. For instance, if a 5-iron is the club of choice for a 160 yard shot, then consider using a 4-iron during winter.
These are some tips that will help golfers beat the cold and lower scores during the winter. Feel free to share your own ideas and tips.