China gears up to compete in golf

ID-100190329 By anekoho - asian woman golfer
Free image courtesy of anekoho/FeeDigitalPhotos.net

We’ve seen what China can do when it sets its sights on competing in an Olympic sport. Well, get ready for Chinese golfers to start have an impact in the decades to come. With the Olympics adding golf the Chinese are fully engaged in developing young talent. Meanwhile the country is hosting high profile tournaments with large cash prizes that are luring golf’s elite. But behind the scenes the Chinese are hard at work.

If it seems strange that China should be the locus for so much high-caliber golf, get used to it. By the year 2020, when golf will make its second modern-era Olympic appearance at the Tokyo games, after Rio de Janeiro in 2016, Chinese players will likely be serious contenders for medals. The world’s pro tours will almost certainly be populated by Chinese stars, and China’s Hainan Island, on the same latitude as Hawaii, could be the world’s busiest golf destination.

The Chinese are serious. “You know how the Chinese love gold medals,” semi-joked Ken Chu, chief executive of the Mission Hills Group, which so far has built 22 golf courses in China, 10 of them on Hainan Island, and hosts more than 500 amateur and junior amateur tournaments a year. Guan and the country’s latest prodigy, Ye Wocheng, who was 12 when he played in a European Tour event in May, train at Mission Hills.

“Golf is a game that the Chinese believe we can excel at, because it’s more an IQ game than a muscular game,” Chu said. “I mean, how often do you get a Yao Ming (the former 7-foot-6 NBA star) becoming a national hero? But golf, no matter what height you are or how much you weigh, is still mostly mental.”

Pro golfers should welcome this challenge, as the amount of money in this sport will skyrocket with the Chinese getting involved. We’ve seen golf become very popular in other Asian countries so we’ll probably see the same here with the Olympic powers behind this push.

Golf styles for colder weather

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We’re getting to that time of the year that golfers in many parts of the country and around the world start to dread. Golf on a beautiful fall day can be spectacular as the leaves start changing and the crisp fall air gives you an energy boost. But those days aren’t the norm, as in many locations the cold rain starts to show up, along with much colder days when the sun is nowhere to be found. It’s a stark change from those hot summer days when you’re playing in shorts and sweating through your shirt after only a few holes. Also, in many locations winter is around the corner, meaning you have to put those golf clubs away unless you’re planning a golf junket out to a warm golf resort.

With the change in the seasons and the cooler weather, you need different golf gear of course as your shorts and polo shirt just won’t do. Of course it’s also an excuse to check out some of the latest styles and shop golf clothing online at Funciton18 and other golf retailers. The photo above has one of the effective golf windstoppers from Galvin Green you can find at the website. You’ll see they have a ton of colors available as golf clothing is getting more colorful just like other clothing styles. I’m partial to the more classic and understated look of the gray and black item above. It’s a very light, flexible jacket with excellent breathability and windblocking properties so you can also wear that jacket in all sorts of casual settings, not just on the course. This windproof half zip golf jacket is made from lightweight Gore WINDSTOPPER® Soft Shell fabric and features a soft collar, elasticated cuffs and a drawstring hem. Browse through the store and you’ll be prepared for these fall days on the links.

Rory Mcllroy needs more focus

What has happened to Rory Mcllroy? That’s one of the biggest questions in pro golf these days, right along with questions about Tiger Woods and his state of mind. These questions highlight the biggest truism in golf – the importance of the mental aspect of the game. Of course the fundamentals like your swing are critical, but nothing messes with a swing more than a mental or emotional distraction. It’s the sort of thing that will drive you crazy if you’re trying to pick tournament winners with online sports betting.

This latest tidbit of news raises new questions about Rory. He’s getting rid of his old management team and forming his own management company, Rory McIlroy Inc., to handle his business interests. This is the second time in two years that Rory is under new management.

Sometimes, small issues can become big issues, and you have to wonder if the business side of golf, along with dealing with all the fame, have taken their toll on Rory. Celebrity status alone can be a major distraction. Being hailed as the heir to Tiger Woods doesn’t help either. But it’s sometimes smaller things behind the scenes, like issues with your managers and handlers, that can also lead to serious distractions.

With Rory it’s all speculation. It’s not like he’s dealing with a major meltdown like Tiger faced with his divorce and the tabloid fallout from his affairs. Tiger has never been the same player. He went from one of the best clutch putters ever in majors to someone who could blow a round with putting mistakes. That’s the result of mental distractions.

The issue with Rory is much harder to pin down, but it seems like he needs a level of stability in his life off the links and he’s not getting that right now.

All of this serves as a lesson for people who love to pick golf winners. When betting on one individual’s performance, the mental side is critical but also very hard to predict.

It also serves as a well-known but critically important lesson for anyone playing golf. You need to learn how to leave your troubles or anxieties off the golf course. Clear your mind, and enjoy the experience. It will help your game immensely.

Golf styles evolve

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Golfers as a whole are not necessarily the most stylish group of people. It’s a traditional game, and much of the clothing is very traditional. But if you’re paying attention to the pro golfers this weekend at Firestone, you’ll see that many of them, particularly the younger golfers, are embracing the newer styles we’re seeing in men’s clothing. The baggy look has been gone for years, and now the pants and shirts are much tighter. The younger and slimmer guys can look great in these new styles, while guys with a pot belly have to be pretty disappointed in these new trends.

So as you head out onto the links this summer, consider upgrading your golf wardrobe with the latest looks. You can click here to shop Galvin Green for one of the best brands in golf. The selection of golf shirts is excellent and you’ll surely find something that fits your tastes. You’ll see that they emphasize an athletic cut so if you’re in shape they’ll make you look great. They have some great waterproof golf jackets as well. By shopping for golf clothes from online store Function18, you’ll be able to choose from so many top brands like Boss and Adidas as well. Selection is important, as even with new styles you need to find something that works for you. You don’t need to mimic Rory McIlroy, but rather browse all of the new looks and see which ones you like best.

So throw out those old baggy shirts and slacks and hit the links in style this summer.

Golf Channel’s Win McMurry is a celebrity WAG

It’s probably old news, but we just heard that blonde beauty Win McMurry from The Golf Channel is dating Michael Phelps. Follow her on Twitter here.