Our 10 no-brainer tips for playing golf in the rain include some shrewd purchases, good pre-round preparation and the odd playing tip
If you’re a committed all-weather golfer, don’t scrimp on the waterproof gear from head to toe – good quality waterproofs are essential. Look out for things like zippered trousers bottoms, which make them easier to get on in a hurry over your spikes. Wet feet make for miserable walking, so if your shoes have done their waterproof time, invest in a new pair.
Grips and spikes
There are two key points of contact in a golf swing – with the ground and with the club. If either is less than solid, your game will be compromised in the rain. Better to replace grips and cleats before they start to cost you shots rather than after.
If the rain is set in, you may well get though more than one glove, so always keep a spare somewhere dry (inside a carrier bag) to be introduced when glove number one has done its time. Special rain gloves offering extra wet-weather grip have become more popular, and it’s perfectly acceptable to wear a pair of such gloves.
Waterproof bag/trolley cover
There are a number of waterproof golf bags on the market now, but an easy-to-attach cape or cover will add another layer of protection to help keep things dry.
It can be almost impossible to make a decent swing if your grips are too wet, so a supply of dry towels is highly recommended. It’s another role for the trusty carrier bag. Hanging one from the underframe of your brolly is also a good idea.
A decent umbrella
Wind and rain is a tough combo to deal with for a large umbrella, so make sure your brolly boasts a good-quality, strong construction, ideally with those vents that help stop it blowing inside out in stronger gusts.
If you’re playing in a competition or want to keep score, a spare scorecard kept somewhere safe and dry is a good idea in case it proves impossible to stop the original getting mushed to a pulp. Writing down your scores every few holes rather than every hole will help prevent this by limiting its exposure to the elements.
Allow for less run
When the ground is wet, the ball won’t run as far. Obvious, we know, but this needs to be factored in to how you play. Less run off the tee may mean you can take more club on holes where you would normally hold back. Approach shots are more likely to stop dead on landing; chips and pitches are more likely to grab; and putts will be slower, meaning they need to be hit more firmly and will therefore take less break.
Hit more firmly in the rough
Wet grass will grab the club much more than normal and slow the clubhead’s progress. So keep everything firmer than usual through impact in wet rough to stop the grass grabbing the club with assorted undesirable consequences!
Accept that scoring won’t be as good
Most of us aren’t blessed with the luxury of caddies and even after adopting all the above measures, it can still be difficult to keep everything dry enough to score well in the rain. So don’t get too despondent when you drop shots – it’s the same for everyone and others will be struggling too.