Golf is widely considered to be one of the most difficult sports in the world. According to ESPN Sport Science, it is the most challenging sport of all. This is because golf has a strong psychological component, and it can be difficult to withstand pressure and maintain concentration while performing precise movements. One of the main reasons why golf is so difficult is the percentage of victories.
Even if you are the number one player in the world, you will still lose the majority of tournaments you play in. This applies to all top players, from Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods to Jon Rahm. There is a lot of debate about which sport is the toughest, and golf and polo are often mentioned as two of the most challenging sports to practice. However, many people still believe that golf is the most difficult sport in the world. Depending on your definition of mastery, you may need hundreds of hours of practice to become a proficient golfer.
My father used to say that you need to hit at least 10,000 golf balls to master golf, while others suggest that you need to hit at least 100,000 golf balls. To play bogey golf (a score of 90 or less), most experts estimate that an average player needs six years of regular play and weekly golf lessons. The Golf Channel states that an average competent golfer takes about 300 lessons a week while playing at least 32 holes a week over a period of many years. This requires a significant investment of time - more than 20,000 hours of practice. For example, if you spend five hours playing 18 holes, you are looking at investing at least 10 hours a week, 40 hours a month - equivalent to 360 hours of practice per year.
It's not just a sport - it's a second job!Many people make fun of golf because it is so difficult. It is an ideal game for perfectionists who work in professions such as computer science where they must create code that works perfectly every time. Unlike bowling where you can achieve a perfect score of 300 points, no one can ever dominate a game of golf. Even the best professionals have bad shots and getting a hole-in-one is rare. Golf can be very humiliating and many perfectionists give up before they become good enough to enjoy playing.
The barriers to entry are high and it takes months of double-par scores before you can start to recognize your deficiencies and enjoy playing. In today's business world, all executives are expected to have at least basic knowledge of golf and membership in a golf course is often seen as an advantage. Business meetings often take place on the golf course and it's easy to ruin a multi-million dollar deal by taking too long to complete a round of golf. Golf is unique among sports because every player can experience greatness from time to time. Even beginners can get an adrenaline rush when taking a long walk down a narrow path or when throwing a 30-foot putt - this is what makes golf so addictive. You can watch Tiger Woods playing on the same course as you and appreciate his incredible skill which comes from years of dedicated practice.
Golf doesn't require great athletic skills either - even someone like me who isn't particularly fit can reach club speeds of 100 miles per hour. Golf relies more on flexibility than brute strength - Tiger Woods is tall and thin but has amazing flexibility which allows him to drive for long distances. In conclusion, golf will always be a game with barriers to entry but for those who commit themselves to mastering it, it is undoubtedly one of the best sports in the world. Andrew Leci from Unreserved Sports suggests that many business meetings should take place on the golf course as it reveals what kind of person you are when playing psychological golf. When designing a golf course, one of the key components is difficulty. You also need incredible muscle control when playing golf as you must focus every movement on the narrow club and small ball.
You also need good cardiovascular fitness which requires intentional training. Golf is essentially several sports in one and it takes power and kindness, flexibility and control to become successful at it. Even weekend warriors should not overlook their general state of health if they want to improve their game.