When it comes to dating people who have some specific hobbies, the rules of behavior can also get very specific very quickly. Someone may think that stuff like this is too nitpicky, or that these particular micro communities are way too rigid, but the fact is you have to swim with the current.
So, if you yourself are a budding golfer, or an experienced veteran of this renowned sport, or if you just have a subtle affinity for tanned skin and dapper shirts, dating a fellow golfer is honestly the best thing you can do for your love life. This is an activity that requires some serious commitment and lots of time, so it would be best if you share the passion.
But what if you have never dated a golfer before? What should you do? What makes for good golfer manners? We found out for you! Our golf-loving friends shared some dos and don’ts of dating in that particular world. Check out what they have to say!
You had better grasp nuances quickly
Okay, so if you are looking to date someone in this niche of life, chances are that you already have at least some general idea of how things work in these social circles. The thing is, though, that a general idea is not anywhere near enough. The world of golfing is extremely nuanced. Etiquette heavily relies on rules and social protocols, but these are all minute and subtle and fairly easy to break if you are not careful. Check out this link for the basics of golf manners if you feel like you should brush up on it a little.
Supposing that this does not happen on purpose, but you really just honestly had no idea, a little rule-breaking can be easily forgiven. However, if you repeat the same mistake, you will come across as intentionally ignoring things, and that is a surefire way to ruin any chance at a second date. You will give the impression of being either too insensitive to even notice, or plain too lazy to make an effort and learn the ropes.
You absolutely have to disconnect
This point is one of those that give the golf course a bit of a stuck-up reputation, but seriously – no matter what, you have to remember to switch your mobile phone off. If you have a pager as well, or any other device, either turn those off too or set them on Vibration Mode or something discreet like that.
This kind of courteous consideration should be par for the course on a date of any sort, especially if you go to a “cultured space” like a museum, gallery, theater and yes, even a movie theater. In a similar vein, if your romantic time involves a metal club and a grassy course, the piercing sounds of a cellphone will immediately brand you as the worst kind of hick.
Know the code and dress for the culture
When you go out with the intention to date other golfers, you should be able to seamlessly blend in with all the other community members, and that means proper attire as well. The course dress code actually cares little about brands, so budgeting should not be a problem.
For a simple, staple combination, you need just a few basic wardrobe items. If you are a man, pick up a neat collared shirt (no need to insist on a white one), some capris or khakis, and put on a pair of golf shoes or, if you have none of those, a pair of decent running shoes. And you are good to go!
If you are a woman, similarly go for a collared shirt in your color of choice as your top, but be mindful of your bottom piece. If you decide to go for a skirt, make it somewhat on the longer side. If you insist on a short tennis skirt for whatever reason (overall comfort, heat wave, etc.) keep in mind that you will be expected to wear a pair of tights under it.
Depending on just how exclusive a given golf course is, the particulars of the required dress code may vary slightly. Therefore, if your date involves an actual game, make sure to double-check any specific requirements beforehand. Whatever kind of course you end up visiting, remember that jeans are a huge no!
Get with the traffic program
Hogging a hole is not tolerated. Even if your golfer date is also your first ever lesson in the game, take care not to extend your turn on the course too much. Making people wait for your slow play is not tolerated.
Also, keep an eye on the carts’ circulation trends, and keep your voice down. Talking loudly is bad golfsmanship. Be considerate to your fellow players, help them look for mishit balls, share your water or spare equipment, and politely refuse, or gracefully accept, when others offer you the same. Behave respectfully.
Bonus: Keep your competitiveness in check!
So, maybe you are actually the more experienced golfer of the pair. In that case, be careful not to turn your date into a contest! This is especially a risk if your date partner are a golfer themselves.
Never sulk if you lose and never gloat if you win. Be graceful about it and always remember, date first, game second. Your shared love of the sport is there just as a conversation starter.