Why You Should Be Playing More Twilight Golf This Year
Playing golf after work in the evenings can be one of the most peaceful experiences in the sport. Whilst the summer equinox at the end of June marks the longest day, there’s plenty of opportunity to nip out for an hour or so from late-March to the end of September. However, riding solo at sunset does more good for you and your game than a little tranquillity (although this alone is surely enough!). Check out some of our top reasons for why you should be playing more twilight golf this year.
A Little Time For Yourself
It should go without saying that playing a few holes in the evening should bring a certain level of both relaxation and enjoyment. Whether you’re buddying up with a mate, or running around on your own, this time should allow you to forget about the troubles from your work day - returning home with a head that’s more concerned with remembering your earlier birdie, than the ambitious sales targets you were set in the morning! In your lowest on-course moments in the monthly medal, when you’re thinking about giving up the sport for good, these evening knocks should be the memory you hark back to, as you take in the deer prancing across the fairways, or the way the sun sets across the pond that always seems to grab your tee-shot on the 15th hole!
Enjoy being outside. Remember just how lucky you are to be able to play this great sport. Billions from across the globe would give anything to trade places as you whack away for a carefree 9-holes. We take the sport for granted far too often as golfers, use this time to take a moment’s appreciation.
Dedicated On-Course Practice
We get it, though. We all want to get better. And if you’re going to be out here anyway, you may as well try and get a little improvement out of it. Whether you want to play the full 18-holes or a shorter loop, hitting the course between weekends is surely a recipe for lower scores in the long run. How often have we heard “I can only get out at the weekends” as an excuse for poor scoring? If you’re able to sneak out a night or two in the week, you may have to start looking for another reason for struggling to break 100, 90, 80, or 70!
Play some games against yourself, perhaps hitting an extra ball here and there, or dropping one in a tricky lie to see how it will come out. Let’s be honest, despite your protestations of unfairness when it happens in a big event, how often have you actually practiced playing from a plugged bunker lie? 7pm on a Tuesday night is the perfect time to give that shot a go!
Building on this idea of improvement, twilight golf is the best time to put some real effort into your on-course practice, without disrupting others. Tiger Woods famously played a game of ‘Worst Ball’ in the build-up to majors, where he played two shots from each spot, and had to play his next from the lesser of these two - this was then repeated until he’d holed out with both. Whether you want to take it to this level, or just work on hitting more drivers on your tricky doglegged hole, there’s no better time to do this than the evenings. There’s no greenkeepers to worry about, and it’s easy to wave folk through if you are spending a little extra time on a certain hole.
Speaking of greenkeepers though - please do them a favour and don’t hit a dozen wedges from the middle of the fairway! Be considerate with your practice; repairing pitchmarks, replacing divots and raking your bunkers. That way you won’t arrive home to an invitation for a ‘chat’ with the Chairman of the Greens Committee.
A Friendly Catch Up
Despite our best intentions, we’re all a bit rubbish at catching up with old friends. Modern technology has made it easier to send a quick WhatsApp message, rather than spending any meaningful time together. Twilight golf is the ideal opportunity for a proper catch up. Over the course of 9 or 18-holes, reconnect with your friends, without a concern for your scores, or that you might be holding up groups behind whilst reminiscing. Related to our earlier point about the beauty and tranquillity of golf at this time of day, we’re sure that in years to come, you’ll remember an evening like this with a good mate far more than your Nett 74 in the following week’s medal.
If you are going to catch up with a mate, why not try a new course? The majority of clubs offer a reduced rate for golf in the evenings, and with many of the biggest names in the sport now charging north of £200 for a round at the weekend, this can be the ideal opportunity to play these layouts at a slightly more affordable price.
An evening round can also be the ideal addition to a golf trip for those keeping an eye on cost. Why not meet up around lunchtime on the first day to get the group together, then head out at 4pm? You’ll almost certainly pay less than you would have done at 9am, and you won’t have to all get up at the crack of dawn! Plus, even if your own game isn’t where you’d like it to be - a fun knock with your mates as the sun goes down is the perfect way to start a golfing getaway.
Maintain, or Improve, Your Handicap
A final, and more recent benefit of playing twilight golf, is the ability to get or maintain a handicap. The introduction of the World Handicap System (WHS) has meant that golfers can register 9 or 18-hole rounds as part of their calculation, without needing to pre-register with your pro (as long as you do so on the App). This means that those looking to get a handicap for the first time can do so at more flexible times, without the stress of doing this on a busy weekend morning. It also presents an opportunity for those whose abilities have changed - either for better or worse - to keep a score that becomes reflected in their handicap, making it a truer reflection of where their game is at ahead of their next competition.
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