I almost always walk the course when I play. Some courses are very easy to walk. Others are rather difficult. But in the end, the rounds are always enjoyable. In the end, the reason I walk when I play can be boiled down to three reasons. First, I feel like I play better golf when I walk the course. Second, walking gives me a few hours of much needed exercise. And finally, I am generally too cheap to pay the additional money for a cart.
My first reason for walking is that I feel I play better golf when walking. Who wouldn’t want to play better? By walking, rather than riding in a golf car, I feel that I have more time to relax myself and clear my mind between shots. This lets me go into each shot with a clear head and determine what I need to do. I am also able to prepare myself for the shot as I am walking up to the ball. I am able to determine the yardage prior to getting to my ball, something I would not be able to do were I riding in a cart, at least not with any accuracy. I am also able to look at the hole and determine what kind of shot I need to play into the hole, high, low or whatever the case may be. Being able to do these two things allows me to make my club selection within 5-10 seconds after arriving at my ball and from there I am ready to play. When riding in carts, I tend to feel rushed and when I feel rushed, I begin to make poor swings. So I have long felt like I play better when I walk and that playing better on the course tends to be a good reason to do just about anything while out there.
But, of course that is not the only reason I walk. I also walk to get exercise. I, like just about everyone, tend to eat a little too much, drink a few too many sodas, and do not go to the gym enough. But by walking the course, I am afforded anywhere between 1 and 5 hours of rather vigorous exercise. Let’s just face it, walking a full golf course, probably 4 1/2 miles with a bag of clubs on your shoulder, is no easy task. Add in the fact that many courses have some substantial hills and walking a golf course can be pretty strenuous. Going out when I play and walking the course allows me the exercise to keep myself in reasonable condition, something that is always a good thing.
Finally, the reason that really should have come first, I am simply too cheap to pay for carts. I feel certain that my home club, with three definite cart tailored courses, somewhere, deep down, dislikes me. In thirteen months as a pass holder at the club, I have taken a golf car once, and then only because I was part of a tournament and the cart was included. In general, I take carts only when they are mandated. Thus far in 2012 I have probably played a total of fifty or more rounds. I have used a golf car in five of those, each time either because my playing partner wanted to or because it was mandated. So that’s at least forty-five rounds played without a cart, given the average cart fee is $15, that amounts to $675 saved just in the first two-thirds of this year. All because I choose to walk rather than ride.
Some people I know like to talk about how they choose to walk the course to keep with the traditions of the game or some other noble goal. There is no such nobility in why I walk. I don’t look down upon people who choose to ride, not those who are able to walk but choose to ride and certainly not those who are unable to walk. Nor do I put the walkers up on some high pedestal. Walking is nothing more than a choice. A choice that I choose to make the vast majority of the time because I feel like I play better, I get good exercise, and because I’m cheap. Golf owners and operators love me.
Article courtesy of John M.
To read more articles by John, visit affordablegolfdesign.blogspot.com
Wholeheartedly agree! I’ve walked away from courses that mandate using carts even after verifying that I could walk prior to making the tee time and the course staffs were very surprised! Even resort courses, if I can’t walk then I’ll find a local that I can. I’ll pay the cart fee but I want the pleasure of the walk!