Add a refreshing twist to your workout and your social life – try golf!
Getting bored of your daily exercise routine? Is the power yoga session or your gym schedule preparing you for an action packed day ahead? For those on the lookout for a change, we might be able to recommend something: try golf! The idea of playing 18-holes, getting your golf gear and finding a coach may sound cumbersome. But industry experts and an increasing number of women golf enthusiasts highly recommend it.
A columnist for various magazines, volunteer at many NGOs and wife of BJP leader Rajiv Pratap Rudy, Neelam Rudy says she does not find it difficult to squeeze in time for golf. “It is so refreshing and does not take any more time than a yoga or gym sessions. You must look at golf as a day-long sport. As a beginner all you need to invest is 30-45 minutes on the driving range. You can do it on alternate days or if it suits you three days in a week.”
Neelam believes that apart from it being a great sport it can also be used as a platform to connect women from across the sectors. “We have recently launched something called the Precious Cup. It is an event where we showcase high-end accessories and is held exclusively for corporate women. These women meet up exchange cards, play a round of golf and what’s more, the winner gets a chance to play amateur invitational at different destinations like Thailand, Malaysia and even Canada.”
According to Nonita Lall, who is among India’s leading coaches, “Young executives across the sectors are increasingly taking to golf. Not only is it the in-thing, these youngsters can even bond over a round of golf as it is a sport you play at your pace.” Talking about married women, Nonita says some may have responsibilities others may find the idea of golf rather tiring.
“There are women who are eager to learn golf but find it hard to manage their time with family or other responsibilities. I will lie if I say that it is not time consuming. Initially, an hour is sufficient but if you do not want to be stuck on the driving range forever, I recommend that you give golf more time. I especially recommend this sport to all women who want to accept challenge. It is not relaxing when you are a beginner, and you will have to invest time but the result is quite satisfying.”
Deepali Shah, distributor for Titleist adds, “It is a sport that encourages team building and changes your outlook towards life. In times when everyone else is rushed and moving at a fast pace, golf helps you develop a very calm attitude. Like any other golf enthusiast I highly recommend it.”
“Starting off on your golf journey is a simple enough task. All metros in India and many other Indian cities have golf courses and driving ranges where one can go and learn golf. In most cases golf lessons can be scheduled at a time and day convenient to the coach and the student. Typically it would take about 12 to 15 hours of coaching to get a beginner off the blocks. Coaching fees start at about Rs 300 to Rs 500 an hour but can go up if you are looking at premium coaches only. A full coaching program for a beginner would cost between Rs10, 000 and Rs15, 000 in the metros.
Golf has become quite an affordable sport today. A brand new set with 14 clubs will only cost about Rs 18,000 and can last you a lifetime and a pre owned set can come for as low as Rs 8,000. Balls and other accessories too are available in a range that suit any pocket. You can be fully kitted out for golf for an investment ranging from Rs 15,000 to Rs. 25,000.
The established coaching academies can also guide students on how and where to get memberships so that they can play different courses. While several courses require you to be a member or be escorted by a member to play the course newer courses are opening up to walk-in golfers. You can also become a member of the Indian Golf Union (IGU) which allows you to play all courses in India. Golf courses also have affiliations with other golf courses so being a member of one allows you some privileges on affiliated courses too.