Isolation and missing golf

So here we are on our first full week of isolation, not sure about you but I’m finding it very hard. The simple things we take for granted day to day I am missing so much, the 50 min car journey to work that I wish could be 5 mins, I am now longing for to have some peace and quiet to let my mind shut down for a bit.

The looking down the first fairway excited yet apprehensive about how I am going to play, but who cares right? I’m doing something I love! Well it’s times like these which make you look at things with a different set of emotions.

Historically, when I played regular tournaments and tried to forge some sort of playing career, I was quite prone to losing my rag and in some circumstances, want to be off that course as soon as I got on it. Something I never, during my playing days, really knew how to deal with, which to some degree held me back from achieving more on my playing CV. It’s very different these days for me, I play very little and only play two pro-ams a year which I have always played and like to show my face on the region every now and then. The funny thing is, I do better in these tournaments than I used to, why? Well to be honest, its because I’m just happy to be playing, enjoying the company of my playing partners and having a break from coaching.

Ive been around golf for 30 years now, and I can tell you, the better you get, the harder it becomes. At young ages we feel how we’ve played defines who we are. If we played well we feel fantastic and people want to talk to us. We feel the other stresses and strains of life become that little less important, we walk with a little more confidence and overall mentally feel good about ourselves. On the other side of the good comes the bad. We feel rubbish, why have we bothered to do all that work only to turn up and play like an absolute helmet with one arm, we go home, snap at the wife, (if she hasn’t left you already) we mull over the round that little bit more and get a poor nights sleep because we’re so pissed off! Ring any bells? Sure I’m maybe over egging things a little for most of you, but I can safely say, on a personal level, the above rings true for my golf over the years.

So how are you coping without your beloved round of golf, or two or three range sessions a week? Missing it a little more than you’d think I’d guess?I’m sure we’ve all had days where we take our wonderful sport for granted, because we’ve never really had it taken away from us. Here’s my prediction for when we finally do return to some level of normality (please god get me out from this home schooling for a 4 & 7 year old soon). When you first get back you’ll be a little rusty, but you’ll enjoy just being there, playing with the usual 4 ball, first monthly medal for quite some time or even just having a knock on your own.

Your golf performance wont matter quite as much as it did before this virus came along a messed with our lives. What you score will just be a number on a card, the real pleasure will just being able to play, as it always should be but rarely is. Maybe through all of this some good things will come out it. I have seen such a amazing amount of people coming together to help each other out with money, food, etc – I think society will be stronger for it and we might stop being so selfish as we were becoming before the arsehole that is Covid-19 came along. I’d like to think we as golfers, both elite and recreational, appreciate our game that little bit more and not let it get to us quite like it used too and in return probably play better golf for it.

I hope the golf courses make it through these tough times, I hope my fellow golf professionals and coaches are able to rebuild as soon as possible. I’m sure our trade will survive and I’m hoping Mr Sunak announces something for the self employed to help us cope without an income for the foreseeable future.

In the mean time I shall just rabble on and try and pass on something worth reading, the red wine is running low so I’m sure they’ll get better as I go.

Tom