Discovering Your Favorite Course

By: R. Martin

What you consider your favorite golf course, other people might not. As we know, the world is filled with all sorts of people who have different opinions on just about every subject. But there are some traits that make that certain golf courses stand apart from the competition. But even with that assumption, it's still a matter of personal choice!

Why are some courses great? Examine these critical factors:

1) Course Conditions- A poorly conditioned golf course will not be any fun to play on. And it could actually make your game suffer. This is why course conditions are so important. Is the ground nice and spongy? Do the greens appear beautiful & well maintained? Look for divots and dirt patches & try to avoid courses that have them. Course conditions are probably one of the most critical aspects to your game (besides the uncontrollable ones like wind & rain).

2) Course Design - You might not know this, but famous golf legends like Arnold Palmer are sometimes used as consultants when a course is designed. This is because golfers know what other golfers like. And who better than a pro to give their input on how to design a course correctly? Golfers like great scenery, plenty of bunkers, nice greens, and a little bit of a challenge. Keeping the course entertaining is the key. The best golf courses in the world have all of these elements. A course's design is critical how popular and challenging it is. In fact, some of the hardest courses in the world are some of the most popular. It's kind of like the Everest phenomenon. After people conquer it, they love to brag on how hard it was to overcome, but their fantastic skills got them through with ease.

3) Great Service - Good service is key to an amazing golf course. The best golf courses in the world have water coolers scattered around the greens or a beverage service of some sort. They also have access to golf carts, locker rooms, and a nice club house. A high-quality restaurant and bar is a nice touch too- a good meal or drink after a day on the course can be really refreshing. And the best courses have helpful golf pros to assist you in your game & help you with anything you need to work on.

4) Comfort Settings- Ask: "Am I comfortable playing this course? Do I ever want to come back here? Repeatedly?" The whole point of golf is to have fun and therefore you need to determine your comfort level with the course. This is, again, a personal opinion.

5) Am I having Fun? - No matter what the other factors you may consider- you play golf for fun, right? Of course! (pun intended) Is the course challenging without being too difficult? How do you feel at the eighth hole? Does the course allow or provide golf carts? Consider these questions when choosing your course.

Even golf pros have a hard time deciding which course was their favorite. Some of them have literally played every famous course in the world. I guess the real question is, if there are a ton of great courses out there, how can you figure out which one actually IS the best? That's a question you'll need to answer for yourself. Good luck!

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