There is an ongoing battle between fans of golf and tennis which of these is the number one luxury sport in the world and it seems like it’s a pretty tight race. Even though tennis fans take pride in the fact that a number of celebrities, as well as the members of royal families all over the world, take interest in the sport, it’s the golf fans who know where the true luxury lies. We’ve done a bit of research and we’ll tell you all about why number one luxury sport in the world actually is golf.
The humble beginnings
The beginnings of golf were truly humble, but today we believe that ‘traces’ of golf can be found even in the early Roman era. Still, even though it can be traced all the way back to Julius Caesar, golf of those times is much different than the one we love today. There are also signs that a similar game was played in China around the first millennia, but the game that comes closest to the one we play today originated I Scotland in the 15th century. The game was so popular that King James II of Scotland had to ban it because it distracted the men from their military duties.
The rules of golf are many and there is also golf etiquette which all players must follow, which is why the sport has been loved by aristocrats. In order to be more successful and use fewer strokes you should spend a lot of time perfecting your golf swing, trying out different clubs and techniques, and practice in different conditions. You are only allowed to carry up to fourteen clubs in your golf bag, so you should know which clubs are best for which fields. If there is anyone else using the identical ball, you should mark yours with a pen or a pencil so you can differentiate them.
There are many successful golf players in the world, but people find that the best players are the ones who are the most creative in their games. Even though, as a golf player, you make plans and intend to follow them, things can often get out of hand, so improvisation is the key. Improvisation, creativity, and the ability to think outside the box are the qualities that separate the ‘Kings of Golf’ from regular players. Everyone remembers the legends of the Augusta Master: Severiano Ballesteros, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, and Tiger Woods. Some of their most spectacular swings took place on the worst parts of the field: groves as well as sand traps, but they were able to get out of those ‘traps’ and win, thus becoming ‘kings of golf’.
All about the numbers
Let’s not forget the main reason why golf is considered luxurious: the cost of it. It’s especially in the States that people are in love with golf: it’s estimated that almost 26 million people have played golf in the previous year. When you learn that there are more than 15,000 golf courses in America alone you realize the great potential it has to expand even more. In 2016, an average UK golfer spent more than £200 (that’s more than $260) on golf clothing, equipment, competition fees, and golf club membership. Of course, you could always buy golf clubs and balls from thrift shops and practice in a nearby field, but if you want to go pro that’s when you have to spend a lot.
There is a reason why golf is often referred to as ‘the rich man’s game’ – a lot of people that hold positions of power are seen playing it along with their business partners. You have to admit that it sounds prestigious when you say that you were out for a round with the CEO of a big company or a partner in a big firm. A great part of golf’s attraction is that you get to exercise without actually having to sweat a lot and look undignified. It’s an enjoyable exercise that isn’t overly physically demanding and you don’t have to be in great shape in order to keep up with others and enjoy the game. Without having to run and jump around you can still get some exercise by walking and practicing your swings.
While there are golf rules that everyone knows there are many unwritten rules as well that make all players pay attention to each other and show sportsmanship and friendship while playing against each other. When another player is preparing to take a swing, you shouldn’t move or talk so as not to disturb them, and if it happens that someone has lost a ball, everyone in the group sets off to find it. Another unwritten rule is that you should never walk on your playing partners’ putting lines, and when a round is finished, you should always shake hands with each other. Not only are these nice manners, but such actions show respect and make everyone feel good while in the field.
If you’d like to try your hand at golf, know that it’s a big investment and that you’ll have to put aside a lot of money. On the other hand, if you’d like to pursue this as a hobby, there are ways to save a bit of money and still pursue your passion. Even though no one can deny that golf is luxurious, it doesn’t mean you’ll go bankrupt if you give it a go. Still, everyone can vouch that there’s an air of prestige that this sport brings and that’s exactly why so many people love it.