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How to Play Golf with Bad Golfer… And Still Enjoy Your Round

You’re a stud on the golf course, naturally.

Your boss (co-worker, father-in-law, neighbor, girlfriend, whoever fill in the blank) over hears you talking about your round last weekend and asks to go hit the links with you.  Without knowing much other than you think the guy is an okay guy you agree to a round of golf because well.. it’s another round of golf.  You meet on the putting green and without one bit of warm up he says he’s ready to tee it up.  Um… okay.  We’ve all been there I suppose so without a thought, you grab your sticks and head over to the tee box.  Your new playing partner has the top of the line equipment – bag, shoes, clubs, ball.  I mean this guy looks like he just stepped off the tour last weekend.  You assume right there and then you’re in good company and let’s do this.  Assume.  Never assume.  …do you know what happens when you assume?  You make an ASS out of U and ME.  (cheese joke – just laugh!)

FORE!! …not once, not twice, but it’s starting to get embarrassing.  So here goes.  Whether you knew ahead of time or you’re just figuring it out fairway one, here’s a quick and basic survival guide to getting through a round of golf with a bad golfer and still enjoy your round.


SAY YES TO A WALK:  Leave the golf cart back at the pro shop.  You’re setting a necessary boundary right out the gate.  Walking allows you to go your separate way more often than not and avoid continual excuses and complaints.  …and the ever so annoying cocky b.s. that most hacks embody because for whatever reason they don’t realize just how crappy they are.  When alone take a few deep breaths and remember you’re out playing golf.  Zen. Focus.  You got this.

CONTROL THE SCORE:  Take control right out the gate.  Offer to keep score and no matter what b.s. number he offers up just smile and add it to the card.  You can scream and cuss in your head all you want (which is actually quite therapeutic).  On the same note… be overly enthusiastic and loud if you take a penalty stroke.  Something about showing off how honest to the game you are may inspire him and if not it’s totally fine to politely remind him it’s a double bogey not a par (until he starts fighting back then just let it all go).  No mulligans either.  This is golf.  A game with rules.  …we’ve all taken them but for this round it’s straight shooting.

RESIST THE URGE TO COACH:  As much as you want to adjust, align, correct don’t.  It’ll just drive you nuts to play coach the entire round and it’ll probably annoy him too.  He already thinks he’s pretty spectacular so keep it to yourself.   Let him putt his ball two feet to the right.  You’re keeping score remember?

KEEP YOUR WALLET IN YOUR POCKET.  If this bad golfer is a cheater, thinks he/she is a stud and wants to bet then it is not worth it to lose any money.  If he asks and insists… choose some obscure game or something complicated with a points system and make the wager small.

SAY THANK YOU AND GOODBYE:  At the end of the round be overly polite, shake his hand and say goodbye.  No need for a post-golf beer. …and if he says, “that was great we should do it again,” just nod and say yes.  Your calendar is full.

What are your best tips?




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2 thoughts on “How to Play Golf with Bad Golfer… And Still Enjoy Your Round

  1. blank

    How about an article on how to play with the egotistical “scratch” golfer. A great majority of us get stuck with the guy that stripes the 300 yard drive on a ” miss hit”. Or takes 10 minutes to line up a 6″ putt. Yeah, some hacks are annoying, but the “pro” is more annoying to the weekend golfer.

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