The earliest history of the game of golf is unknown but the modern game started around the 15th century in Europe, precisely in Scotland and Netherlands. It has grown over time especially, in the 20th century, to become a worldwide sport.
Golf can be played on several levels including the professional level where you have different tournaments like The Masters, PGA Tour Championships, The British Open, and the US Open. It may also be played on the amateur level and recreationally.
It is an outdoor sport played with a club and a white ball that players hit into different holes on a course using the fewest strokes possible. The player with the fewest strokes covering all the holes wins the game. The sport does not utilize a standardized playing area but different terrains which may include both natural and artificial impediments like hills, lakes, sands, trees, etc.
A typical golf course contains 18 holes but smaller recreational courses may contain 9 holes. Every hole contains a teeing box or ground where a player starts from and a putting green which contains the actual hole within which lies a cup about 11cm in diameter.
On a golf course, there are standard terrains which include the fairway, bunkers (sand traps), rough (long grass), rocks, water, etc. Each course is unique in its layout and no two are likely the same. You may wish to learn more here.
Playing golf requires a high level of skill that involves a lot of patience, concentration and dedication. It is historically thought of as the game of the rich due to how expensive it is to buy necessary equipment and to pay for courses as well as membership fees. This may still be so today but one can now find public places where it is cheaper to play.
Who Makes The Rules?
Although the International Golf Federation located in Lausanne, Switzerland is the world governing body for the sport, it does not make its rules nor does it organize professional competitions. Rather, it organizes amateur competitions and is recognized by the International Olympic Committee.
Golf rules are developed by the United States Golf Association (USGA) located in Jacksonville, Florida for the North American countries including the U.S and Mexico. For the rest of the world, the rules are formulated by the R&A, which was formerly The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, Scotland; the oldest and most prestigious club in the world.
How is the Game Played?
The sport of golf can be complicated especially to newbies. There are plenty of rules to learn and also different sets of clubs to know. As if that is not enough, you get to learn different terms and words that are unique to the sport such as par, putt, birdies, bump-and-run, boogey, eagle, greens, and albatross and so on. You can find a more exhaustive list of the game’s terminologies here: https://www.realbuzz.com/articles-interests/sports-activities/article/golf-terms-explained/.
To play, you need the right set of equipment; balls, clubs, and attire. The clubs are based on the level of the player as different levels use different shapes and forms of clubs.
The start point for every game is the teeing ground. It is a rectangular space which in depth is about the length of two clubs and its front is indicated by two markers. A player tees (places his ball on a small plastic or wooden peg called a tee that is buried into the ground) at any point within this area and then strikes the ball towards the hole. This stroke is usually referred to as a drive.
On a player's path to putting the ball in the hole, there are many obstacles called hazards. Players are sometimes required to cross small bodies of water or play the ball to go around a tree, in the grass or in the sand. Players employ different kinds of clubs, either wooden or iron, based on the kind of play they intend.
The player keeps trying to put the ball in the hole using different strokes. On approaching the hole, the player might either pitch the ball to stop it close to it or play a chip shot where the ball is made to fly like a projectile and land close to the hole. From here, the ball can be easily rolled into the hole in what is called a put. The fewer the number of strokes used to achieve a put, the better for the player.
Where Can You Learn About Golf?
To learn more about this game, various online resources such as Golf Treasury exists. Lovers, fans, or even players of the game at whatever ability or level, can read and learn about the sport on these online resources. This may include learning the rudiments and how to play the game, the rules, finding and choosing the right golf clubs and attires as well as news, reviews and events surrounding the game.
Here, you can read and learn about everything you need to know concerning the sport whether you are playing for leisure, as an amateur or a professional.
With this, there is no excuse not to learn to play this game if that is what you desire. It is no longer beyond the reach of many like was previously the case.