Golf is both a hot topic and big business. Tiger Woods apart, the world seems to be full of talented young golfers and many people want to get into golf. It can be an expensive hobby though, so here are some tips to help you get started without a massive financial investment.
1. A good set of clubs the right size for you. The absolute minimum is a driver, a putter, at least one iron (7 iron is the best choice if you can only afford one) plus a wood for the fairway. And a bag, of course. Tees and balls are necessary, and a newbie needs a lot more balls (excuse the pun) that a more experienced golfer. A budget choice is cheap or ‘refurbed’ balls, they can usually be purchased at your club and save you a fortune in lost balls as you find your swing.
2. Easy to wear shoes and clothes. They need to be comfortable and to meet the dress code at whatever club you visit. Remember that if you’re travelling around local clubs to find one that suits you as a base, the dress code may vary. Virtually no clubs allow vests or sleeveless T-shirts, and many privately-owned clubs are much stricter about the rules, some insisting on shirts with full-length sleeves and ‘golf shoes’ rather than trainers or loafers, for example. Polo-shirts work well for nearly all golf clubs.
3. Accessories. A good hat is really necessary – something that shades your eyes but doesn’t catch your arm on the swing, so nothing with a brim that sticks out sideways from your head. Most people wear some variety of the baseball cap. Gloves are often seen as optional but for beginners they are close to vital, as they improve the grip and protect you from blisters. Remember that sun cream may be necessary but a good water-resistant jacket is more likely to be of long-term value!