How To Stay Safe When Golfing During The Coronavirus Pandemic
As with all aspects of the spread of the Coronavirus pandemic, the concern about golfing in the time of COVID-19 brings you important questions that need answering. At a time when we are all being told to exercise and live by the rules of social distancing, it can be important to go about some of your regular activities, including playing some rounds of golf. In most states, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in stay-at-home orders that have closed golf courses across the nation. Fortunately, River Hall CC is open and golfers are still able to book tee times, but staying safe while on the course should remain a top priority.
Obey the Rules
This may seem like a simple thing to do, but many courses are reporting the general rules that have been put into place are not being followed by most members and guests at courses. If a course states no more than one person should ride in each cart, take the advice and do not break the rules, which could result in the closure of the entire course.
Do Not Play When You Are Sick
One of the simplest and most effective ways of staying safe when you are playing a round of golf is to make sure you are not making your way to the course with a fever or any other symptoms of COVID-19. Staying safe means not only protecting yourself but making sure you protect your fellow players. If you or your family members are affected by the symptoms of Coronavirus, you should cancel your round and avoid contact with others to ensure the possibility of spreading the virus is not a major one.
Avoid Contact With Others
Golf is a social game, we all know that. However, this is a time in our lives where traditions are being tossed aside in favor of staying safe and well by not passing on the virus to others. Starting with your arrival at the course, you should skip the traditional warm-up on the putting green as this adds to your risk of exposure. Instead, choose to hit a few balls on the driving range and live with being a little rusty around the greens for a few holes. When you meet and leave the course, the best option is to avoid the traditional handshakes we usually see at every level of the game. Instead, you should look to take new options, such as tapping putters, bowing, or simply greeting each other with a few words.
Reduce Your Contact with Equipment
Golf has an advantage over many of the other sports in the world because of the limitations that have been placed on other sports because of their close contact between competitors. Golfers usually meet at the tee box and then set off to different parts of the fairway, rough, or green. However, many courses have already reduced the number of rakes in use at their courses to limit the risk of the virus being passed between players using sand traps. The majority of golf courses are looking to minimize contact between players by keeping contact levels to a minimum by ordering players not to remove flags from holes when they play. By not removing flagsticks, most players are making sure they have the chance to maintain their level of risk at a low-level.
Look To Matchplay
Whether you are using matchplay rules or keeping score, the pandemic is no time to decide you want to fight over a two-foot or shorter putt. We know the Ryder Cup has given us all a few headaches when it comes to giving a putt to a competitor, but when COVID-19 is the main opponent making sure you or your playing partner don't have to bend down and touch the cup should take precedence.
If you are choosing to head out to the golf course during the pandemic, you should always be prepared to change your routine a little. When you arrive at your local club, you should look to make a few small changes to your routine, including changing your shoes in the parking lot. The other major change you should make is using some caution when it comes to your hygiene at the course. If you do happen to touch the cup of the hole when picking out your ball, the best option is to make sure you are sanitizing your hands to stay safe at all times. Another option is to sanitize your glove, although many players are looking to avoid the use of gloves to make sure they can maintain a proper grip as they play.
Clean your Equipment
Your equipment should be cleaned regularly as you arrive home after a round of golf. You do not want to face the issue of clubs, balls, and a bag that are contaminated by the virus. Instead of using ball cleaners around the course, decide to switch to cleaning all your equipment at home to make sure it is sanitized before being stored or brought back out for another round in the future.