Ten interesting facts about golf

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An in-depth look at verbage, rules, events from the world of golf

Three small strokes for mankind, one giant stroke for California Baptist University’s golf teams.

In 2011, both the men and women’s golf teams earned the title of national champions in the National Christian College Athletic Association. Both teams have been successful in the course of their existence at CBU, having earned numerous individual and team honors.

Some athletes have given a little insight into the workings of the sport itself. Here are 10 things students prob- ably did not know about golf:

1. If you get three under par on one hole, it is called an albatross.
One might assume talking about an albatross means reference to a web-footed bird. However, the albatross term came into play when golfers discovered that the rarity of actually scoring three under par was similar to the rarity of seeing an albatross bird. Par, for those who are not aware, is a scoring term, it is the average score for the hole. When golfing, the goal is to score even or under par.

2. The “Happy Gilmore” swing does not work.
While focus and patience is needed to play golf, having the mentality of Adam Sandler in “Happy Gilmore”
does not carry over into the real game. The purpose of Sandler’s swing is to drive the golf ball farther and, while that could happen, the accuracy of one’s drive declines, making for a rather unsuccessful method.

3. There are four major tournaments in professional golf every year: the Masters, U.S. Open, British open and the PGA championship.
Playing golf is more than simply driving a golf cart across a wide range of green, bumpy hills and socializing with friends. Some take the competition seriously. For the U.S. Open, British Open and PGA, golfers must have high ranks or be well known to qualify. The Master’s is an exclusive invitation-only tournament.

4. You do not have to be rich to enjoy golf.
Prices for clubs, golf balls and proper attire can be a bit pricey. However, the sport is not limited to those with heavier wallets. Anyone can play the game if they look in the right place. Plenty of golf courses offer deals, discounts and low prices for beginners.

5. The Ryder Cup happens every two years, this is an event where 12 golfers from Europe play against 12 golfers from the U.S.
Since its start in 1927, the Ryder Cup has become one of the most watched golf tournaments in the world. The United States has a 25-10-2 overall record against Ryder Cup opponents.

6. Sam Snead has the most PGA tour wins of all time.
Raking in eight more PGA wins then Tiger Woods, Snead reigns supreme and currently holds the title for most tour wins of all time.

7. You do not have to be big, tall and buff to hit it far.
While height can be an advantage for many sports, additional inches does not automatically equal more talent in golf. In fact, the shortest professional golfer, Brian Karton, measures in at 5 feet 3 inches tall. Although his height is the punch line of many jokes, his golfing skills are no laughing matter.

8. Most professional golfers work out a lot.
A lot of tension is created from swinging a club to drive the golf ball hundreds of yards. Golfers work out for strength and endurance like any other athlete. They do not build muscle that will take away from their drive, but they do cardio and lift weights to improve their game.

9. Hitting it straight is more important than far.
Hitting the ball close to the hole is a huge advantage; however, if that means hitting the ball crooked or curved, it can mess up a golfer’s score on a hole. It is better to land straight and safe then to gain a farther distance and land in a sand trap.

10. Everyone should try and learn to play golf.
Trying a new sport can be good for the body and soul. Golf requires focus (for those looking to be more focused and gain concentration) and provides the means for making new acquaintances due  to golf ’s social nature.

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