With over 23 million players in the United States and millions more around the world, Golf is a sport that is clearly here to stay. We would think, given the sport’s long history, that we would be experts. Despite the game’s age, even the most knowledgeable golfers may not know a few things about the standard game of eighteen holes.
A few golf facts you may not be aware of:
1. Scotland did not invent golf.
It is believed that golf originated in Scotland around 100 BC when Julius Caesar ruled. However, the fundamental ideas remained the same despite the slight differences between the game they played and what we play today. As opposed to rubber and plastic balls, golfers used leather stuffed with feathers and clubs made of tree branches during this time period.
2. King James II outlawed golf in Scotland.
The monarch of the country that invented it would never forbid golfers from playing on a green. That is the answer.
During that period, Scottish neighbors in England continued to attack them, so physically fit young men had to continue their military training. Instead of practicing their archery, boys spent their time swinging, which isn’t the best skill for fighting an enemy.
3. The British popularized the game.
Undoubtedly, the British Empire, which had a huge global influence at the time, had a profound influence on the spread of golf globally starting in the 17th century. As such, it should not be surprising that Great Britain had such a significant influence on the game’s spread worldwide at this time.
It is a club-and-ball sport in which players use various clubs to hit balls into a series of holes on a course in as few strokes as possible.
4. North America’s first 18-hole golf course was in Chicago.
It was at the Chicago Golf Club in Wheaton, Illinois, that the first 18-hole golf course was constructed in the United States. It may seem that it has been popular in America for centuries, but this particular course opened only in 1893. Before this, however, there were courses with fewer than 18 holes.
5. Golf is one of two sports that have been played on the moon.
Alan Shepard, the captain of Apollo 14, hit the driver of his golf club on February 6th, 1971, and two golf balls were sent into space after he hit his driver with a golf club. The term “played” tends to be ambiguous when it comes to playing a sport on the moon.
6. The longest drive in history is 515 yards.
As a matter of fact, it was in 1974 when Michael Hoke Austin. While playing a course in Las Vegas, hit a golf ball 515 yards. To put things in perspective, that’s the equivalent of more than four football fields.
Golf is a hard sport to play consistently well. It swing is a series of movements that need to be repeatedly combined together, and timed well, with a small margin for error. It also presents a number of mental challenges and requires a large amount of time, and often money, to master.