Many golfers, including myself, have been patiently waiting for the weather to break so we can get back onto the course and into the swing of the 2021 golf season. The weather has been pretty terrible this month, and the cold temperatures, rain, and snow we have seen here in Delaware have not been optimal for golf. Wednesday’s 55-degree day proved to be a bright spot on a pretty horrible month weather-wise and provided us with optimism and hope that the golf season is not too far away. I certainly saw the enthusiasm from our golfers here at the American Classic Golf Club that Wednesday as the tee sheet quickly filled up with golfers excited to finally get out and play again.
While many beginner and experienced golfers are starting to get ready for the 2021 season, many others have interest in playing but do not know how to start or what they need to get into the game. Understanding the basic golf essentials needed to get into the game can seem overwhelming for those who have never played, but it is a lot easier to get started than it seems. Hopefully this blog will help get you one step closer to hitting the course!
If you are sure you want to get into golf, having a set of golf clubs is definitely needed. A few weeks ago, I wrote an in-depth blog on all things golf clubs, so I will just cover the important details here. The main golf clubs include irons, woods, hybrids, and wedges. While club manufacturers sell these clubs individually, I recommend purchasing a full set to start out. There are many affordable full sets available for men and women that will have all the clubs you need to get started. There is absolutely no need to spend a ton of money on your first set of clubs and purchasing a full set can be an affordable way to get started. I would also like to mention that many golf courses have clubs available to rent, so if you wanted to play a few rounds before investing in your own set it could be worth it to rent first.
The next things you will need are golf balls and tees. Golf balls are not included with your round, so you will have to purchase your own. Brands like Top Flite, Spalding, and Wilson are inexpensive golf balls that are perfect to start out with. You can get 15 of these golf balls for 10-15 dollars, while other balls like Titleist Pro V1s and TaylorMade Tp5s can be up to 56 dollars per dozen. In my opinion, there is no reason to spend a lot on golf balls when you are starting out, as you are unlikely to notice any difference between a 5-dollar Titleist ball and a 1-dollar Top Flite ball in the beginning of your golf journey. In the beginning, you will also lose more balls in water hazards and other out of bounds areas on the course, so it makes sense to start with a cheaper ball. When I play a Titleist or another expensive golf ball and lose it in the water or elsewhere, I always think “welp, there goes 5 dollars.” As you begin to improve and start playing more often, upgrading to a premium golf ball can certainly have its advantages and is worth it, but I would recommend starting with cheaper balls.
Golf tees are also essential items when starting out and are inexpensive. You can purchase a package of 50-100 tees for 5-10 dollars, and they are also easy to come by on the course. Tees come in sizes ranging from 1-4 inches and starting with a 2-3.5-inch tee is totally fine. Any package of tees you can find at your courses pro shop or online will be fine and work well for you on the course.
Once you have clubs, balls, and tees, you have just about all of the essential items needed to hit the course! One thing I recommend before taking on the course for the first time is considering hitting a few buckets at a driving range or hitting net. It is best to avoid hitting your first ever golf ball on the 1st tee of a golf course, so hitting at the range or net can be beneficial.
These are the basic and general items needed to get started, and in another blog going forward (Part 2), we will cover the basic etiquette rules and other items that will help you get out onto the course.
Hope to see you all out on the course soon!
-Sam Cresta, Assistant Golf Professional at American Classic Golf Club