Are the expectations of golfers regarding the golf course practical and realistic? Since they see it on TV and have read in magazines about golf courses that are very green with lush grass and well-manicured lawns, golfers tend to believe that the golf courses they go to should also be just as pristine.
Unfortunately, maintaining such natural standards in a golf course requires a considerable budget and intensive lawn management. This is often not feasible for many golf clubs. Not only is there a significant financial cost involved, but intensive lawn management can also lead to adverse environmental and social issues if such lawn management is not adequately implemented. This could lead to bad publicity for the golf club.
With many golf clubs experiencing a decline in their membership, no golf club would want to endure lousy publicity. There is a growing awareness of environmental issues among the general public. And legislation has become more stringent with regards to the environment. With such constraints, a limited budget would make intensive lawn management unsustainable or perhaps even impossible to implement.
There Are Several Reasons Why People Play Golf
Some people play golf to enjoy their free time and to have fun. Others play because they want to compete in tournaments, which is a good thing.
For some, they play the sport because they want to be challenged. Those who love to meet people join golf clubs because they want to socialize with others. And some play because they want to be immersed with Mother Nature.
A golf course should be able to meet these needs. It should provide a suitable level of play for the whole year. The playing surfaces should be consistent and fair. Also, the golf course should be challenging for an expert golfer, but at the same time, a beginner golfer should enjoy playing on the golf course as well. It should blend in with the local area’s natural landscape, and the course should provide excellent value concerning the cost of playing on the course versus the quality of conditions provided. The golf course management should also proactively and positively engage with the local community. And the business model should be sustainable for the golf course operator.
The appearance of the golf course, such as the color of the grass and the characteristics of playing on it, will naturally change as the seasons and the weather conditions change. Golfers should be prepared for these changes. Part of the enjoyment and the challenge of playing golf comes from adjusting to the changing conditions of the golf course.
What is of prime importance in a golf course is fairness and consistency. The conditions that a golfer would encounter in the practice putting green should be the same conditions the golfer would meet in the eighteen greens of the golf course. The R&A states that playing conditions that are dry, fast, firm, and true should be what golf clubs aim for because they are sustainable in the long term.
Such conditions provide a playing surface that is resilient and can be played on frequently. They also offer consistency, which rewards good shots. They lessen the need for chemicals and water. This reduces the impact on the environment. And because the cost of managing such conditions is lower, playing on the golf course can be more affordable.
Properly communicating this information to your golf course customers and your golf club members are essential to gain their support. You will have to encourage them to support a sustainable and environment-friendly golf course.