There are two first days of the traditional golf season – first is the Spring Forward time change (March 12), and the second is the week of the Masters (the first full week in April.)
Like the groundhog, the weather on time change Sunday predicts if the golf season has begun, or if we still have four more weeks of winter before the Masters. Nice weather means one of the busiest days of the year as people dust the clubs off. Bad weather means the day came and went without arousing the golf senses, and temptation to hit the links was unconvincing and unappealing.
If you are a golfer, and you can watch the entire Masters Tournament week without wanting to throw the clubs in the car and head to the course, then golf does not run through your veins. If Tiger wins, the club will be flooded with enthusiast – the "Tiger Effect" is real.
How the Traditional Golf Season Works
After months of layoff, the golf game is usually pretty rough for any golfer – you just lose the "feel" for the game. No one plays to his or her handicap the first few weeks; the exception being the person who ended the fall frustrated and in a slump, but the months of layoff washed away the bad habits and a renewed spirit rejuvenated the soul. If you ended last year as a 15 handicap, you will likely not break 90 until May. When you have your first good round of the season, the brain is triggered, and you now have golf fever for the rest of the season. Practice and improvement becomes a focus as the weather begins to consistently allow you to plan your golf week. Most will want to play well at the Member Guest in late July, and then want to hit his/her season scoring peak around August, when the Club Championship takes place. Not many would aspire for greatness, but "not embarrassing himself" would be the main goal for the year – another year in the books.
How the 2017 Golf Season Should Work
- Write a mission statement for your golf game. The Mission Statement will give you direction for your golf game. We will talk more about this next week and why it is important.
- Come up with a plan to meet your goals. The loftier the goals, the more planning it will take. Great golfers don't stumble over good swings, and the ball doesn't fall because of luck.
- Plan your golf season. Hidden Trails is notorious for players waiting until the last minute to sign up for an event. The best thing you can do is to look at our tournament schedule, sign up for all of the events now (all sign up sheets for the year are behind the counter in the Pro Shop), then mark them in your calendar. You now have a balanced schedule for the year, and can plan work, social activities, and practice around these events.
- Do something different this year that will make a big difference in your game. What is the one thing that you need to do differently in 2017 that has held you back in previous years? Is it "get in shape", "get more sleep", "arrive 20 minutes early to warm up and practice before a round", "fix your slice", "lower your handicap by 5", "walk most rounds you play", "play with more people you don't know", "buy a custom set of clubs", "don't throw your clubs after a bad chip", "repair all divots in the fairway and greens", "win a tournament”? Pretty much anything that would help you be more engaged and allow you more fun playing golf this year.
- Don't bicker. Keep golf fun.
- Don't cheat. Know the rules. If not, #5 is difficult for others.
- Turn scorecards in to get a legitimate handicap. USGA takes the top 10 of the last 20 scores, not the "chosen" 10 of the last 50 scores.
- Support the club and all of the events. Whether it is participation, sponsoring events, dining on Friday steak nights, joining the VIP Club for Pro Shop merchandise shopping, etc. There are numerous ways to stay involved and help the HT community enjoy a prosperous and memorable 2017!