Journal Entry #99

One way is to cheat, but golfers are generally honest and considerate people who follow the rules and abide by golf etiquette. So cheating is not an option. However, would you believe that there are golfers out there who, without knowing it, increase their scores unnecessarily?

In July of this year the Professional Golf Association (PGA) and the United States Golf Association (USGA) launched the "TEE IT FORWARD." This took place July 5 - 17. I was unable to address this initiative at the time because I was working at the U.S. WOMEN'S OPEN here in Colorado Springs. See Journal Entry #98 in the ARTICLES link on www.SeniorFriendlyGolf.com. July 5 - 17 was the launch date, but this approach to enjoying golf more is recommended for year round use where possible. "TEE IT FORWARD" will most likely not be a factor when playing scrambles and other fund raising golf events.

The way golfers keep their scores higher is by starting each hole's play from a tee box above their ability level. I see golfers, often younger ones, who insist on hitting their drives from "the tips" or other location where professionals and competitive tournament contestants play from. I don't know why they do this unless it's an ego thing or to avoid embarrassment when playing with others who are at the low handicap level. Then too, they may be visualizing themselves as being a pro. Lots of luck on that.

Years ago a local municipal golf course I frequently played (see COURSE REVIEWS, Valley Hi G.C.) identified on their score cards what appropriate tee box to start from based on handicaps. This is still the case at many courses around the country. But what if you don't have an official handicap? Not a problem anymore.

The PGA/USGA "TEE IT FORWARD" initiative simply recommends which tee box to use. "TEE IT FORWARD" identifies how far a player usually hits a good tee shot and matches that distance to a course length on the scorecard. For example, if your usual, or average, tee shot goes 225 yards you should use the tee box on the score card that specifies the course length of 5,800 to 6,000 yards.

Below you will see the "TEE IT FORWARD" guidelines put forward by the PGA/USGA as well as an example of a scorecard with the various tee distances in the "total" column at the right of the card.

This program is put forward to help players enjoy the game more. Hopefully it will also increase play around our country.

The next Journal entry, #100, will be about a very ambitious golf tour I recently completed. The tour required over 3,900 miles on the road and to play at 10 superb golf courses and visit family and friends in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Since the article will have a photo slide show and review of each course, it may take awhile to complete the project. Stay tuned to www.SeniorFriendlyGolf.com.