The word “Fall” often times brings to mind football games, bonfires, caramel apples and falling leaves. Most golfers also know that the fall is the best time to play golf. Hopefully you are taking advantage of the fall weather and getting a chance to play some golf. Other than falling leaves and an occasional frost delay, the fall is a great time to enjoy the beauty of the course. Here are some hints to help you enjoy golf this fall, even when the temperatures start to drop.
• Dress in layers – Now more than ever, golf clothing is made for comfort, performance and appearance. Some are designed to wick moisture away while helping to keep you warm. Layers are good for cool mornings and allow you to “remove layers” as the temperatures rise during the day. Make sure the layers still allow you to swing comfortably – no one wants to feel like the “Michelin Man” trying to swing a golf club.
• Wear a winter cap, headband or ear muffs – Remember while playing in the cooler temperatures, the fashion police don’t care what you look like. You will be bundled up in layers so it’s important to keep your head warm as well.
• Wear winter golf gloves – Many golf glove manufacturers make gloves designed for golf in cool climates and they are sold in pairs – like rain gloves but a bit thicker. (They are also great for light-weight gloves for driving your car in the winter!) If you don’t like playing with winter golf gloves, you can at least wear them between shots. Another alternative is cart mitts that allow you to wear your regular golf glove and simply remove the cart mitts before hitting.
• Use hand warmers – Many camping and sporting goods stores carry the dry-chemical hand warmers. These are great to have in your pockets to keep your hands warm between shots. Also change golf balls every few holes, using a ball from your pocket that’s warm – it won’t feel so hard coming off the face of your club.
• Walk if possible – As we all know walking on the golf course is great exercise plus the walking helps you stay warm. Remember just as riding a cart can be “cooler” in summer months when the temps start to drop, that same “breeze” feels like instant air conditioning. If you do ride a cart, bring a stadium blanket as a seat cover that can double as a warming layer if needed and use the windshield, if provided, to keep the wind off your face. Some people have gone so far as to use a cart cover for cool weather and use portable propane tanks made specifically for golf carts (they fit right in the cup holders) as heaters.
• Take one more club – the golf ball tends to travel a shorter distance in cold weather, so take one more club than you would during warmer months.
• Swing easy – This goes along with taking one more club (above). Since you are using one more club, swing easy and make good contact with the ball. If you swing hard and hit a “stinger” you will feel it in the club shaft and in your hands. No one wants a “stinger” with cold hands.
• Plan your winter get-away – as the temperatures start to drop, it’s a great time to plan your winter get-away to a warm climate destination. Visit EWGA Golf Course Network to visit a facility that welcomes EWGA members (usually at a discount!)