Why Golf is NOT a Sport
This conversation has popped up several times throughout my
years and I have always wondered about it so I figured I would write about it
as my first blog. First off, my point is not to offend any of you golfers
although it usually happens as I usually get ganged up on when I bring this
topic up. I admire people who find happiness in this pastime. But
seriously, is golf a sport??
According to Webster's Dictionary, the definition of Sport is: an athletic activity requiring skill and physical exertion and often of a competitive nature.
Ok so first let me talk about the athletic activity part. When someone says "athletic activity", usually the first thing that comes to mind is something along the lines of a challenging physical activity such as running, jumping, or something that just gets one's heart a-pumpin. To me, golf does not do that, although there are some out of shape fellas out there that may find it challenging to walk around a golf course carrying some clubs. But I'll get to the walking aspect in a sec.
When you look a majority of golfers, many of them are older men who have great skills in their hobby but very limited athleticism. Look at pro golfer John Daly or V.J. Singh. Both have been known for smoking cigarettes while playing golf and John Daly is tubby and has man boobs! I've seen a lot of golfers who look like they would die of a heart attack if they even attempted running. Tiger Woods on the other hand, is no doubt one of the greatest recognized athletes out there. He is very athletic and very skilled at the game of golf. But does practicing and playing golf make him the athlete that he is? I do not think so. He runs almost daily and has a rigorous workout routine with a personal trainer. So are golfers athletes? They can be, but playing golf does not make them athletes!
Many people I have had this argument with have always asked me if I can swing a club and hit a golf ball down the fairway. I have tried playing the game of golf and I admit that it was fun and very VERY difficult! After several tries, I could finally knock the ball a ways out but could not hit the broad side of a mountain. My putting was ridiculous as well. I can see the frustration that golfers have in their favorite pastime. It does indeed take precision and strategy as well as a mental challenge. But so do games such as darts, chess or billiards. Are those sports?? Well, at least I don't consider those sports either. But nonetheless, they are fun.
Now the biggest reason I do not consider golf a sport is the absence of physical exertion. I don't think you could call it physical exertion by simply swinging a club at a ball. That's probably no more physical than taking out the garbage. The other argument here is that golfers walk frequently. Wow! In many semi-pro golf competitions, walking is not even required. I could probably bet that about half of all avid golfers use golf carts when they play rather than walk. I have noticed that most of the pros do walk but yet they hire caddies to carry their clubs. But I remember a case where a disabled pro golfer, Casey Martin sued the PGA for his right to compete in the PGA Tour and won. So even in the pros, walking may not be required. Even if walking is required, it has no fundamental significance on the competition itself. It's not like golfers see who can walk the fastest from hole to hole. Speaking of competition, you can't call golf a sport simply because it is a competitive game. Companies compete, video gamers compete, shoot, even a spelling bee is a competition. You get the point?
One thing that really bothers me about golf (other than it being called a "sport") is that it is so fancied up and over rated. Why can't you just go out and join your local golf club without having to worry about what you wear? What's with all pompous attire that is required by the majority of golf clubs and organizations? I can't think of a "sport" that is so adamant about the clothes of their so called "athletes" with the exception of uniforms of course. I could not help but to laugh my ass off the first time I saw Jackass when they were messing around with the golfers using their air horn. Or in Caddyshack when that gopher was messing them all up. It just seems to me that golf has a stereotype of being a rich man's sport. It makes since because I read that modern golf was actually first played by the Scottish Royalty and common peasants were banned from playing. If I ever go back out to a golf course, I'll be sure to wear the filthiest holy clothes I have just to protest this pompous aspect of golf. One thing I love about golf courses - they make a good place to go jogging.
So that's my rant about golf. Again, I don't wish to offend any of you golfers. If you truly believe that your recreational activity / hobby / pastime is a sport, then that is just fine and dandy. But I feel that the mere fact that this issue is debated by a large amount of people around the world says something about the validity of golf being a sport. My goal is not to bash golf, I just simply wanted to get this off my chest and be heard rather than being shut out every time I mention it.