Salman Aslam

Candid Schmooze

Golfing Attire, Etiquettes and Faux-Pas

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Golf is one game which places emphasis on dress code, rigid adherence to decorum and etiquettes. Antecedents and origin of golf can be traced to the 15th century. Golf was initially played on the gusty wind swept link courses of Scotland. Owing to vagaries of inclement weather and harsh winters dress was knickers tucked in stockings, tartan and tweed coats and ties with starched collars. Three piece suits were also than in vogue. Those were the heydays of Vardon, Tommy Armour and the likes of them. The golfing accoutrements in those days were the spoon, brassie and the nib lick.

Golf gained immense popularity in the late 19th century with it brought about a major shift in sartorial elegance. Technological advancements and sophistication in golfing arsenal placed greater demands on players. With it ties and suits were replaced with T shirts, trousers and shorts of outrageous colour combination. Presently tour players on the circuit are conspicuous by their riotous and bizarre combination. Players like Daley, Poulter and many more don multi-coloured trousers.

Golf is a game having distinct idiosyncrasies. So the players also take up the game for pleasure or business. The nouveau riche plays to satisfy their egos as a fashion stunt. Some play for pleasure alone. Limited category plays to achieve some semblance of prowess.A certain category buys golfing equipment as a mere decoration or exhibitionism. While the rest romp the courses duffing and huffing all their lives.

Let us now come to the dress etiquettes of golf. This is one game in which decorum, integrity and demeanour is the hallmark with no room for compromise. Having been deeply embroiled in the game for over three decades I have come across glaring dress gaffes and in decorum as far as dress is concerned. Golfers remain oblivious of such impropriety out of total ignorance or defiance remains enigma. 

Following indiscretions have been observed:-

• Playing in denim jeans. Jeans are trousers with patch pockets and stitched inner seams.
• Wearing collarless shirts without tucking inside trousers.
• Playing in Bermuda shorts and cargoes.
• Wearing track suit lowers.
• Shoes with steel spikes are forbidden in most courses.
• Playing without socks.
• Shorts not as per specification. Must be below knee level.
• Wearing street shoes/joggers.
• Headgear must for protection. Must NOT be worn backward. Jaunty angle permitted.

Golfing equipment also falls within ambit of attire. Players must ensure following:-

 Gloves are clean and not riddled with holes.
 Balls are clean and in good shape.
 Golf clubs are cleaned from dirt as grooves will not impart backspin.
 Golf trolley is clean and inspected.
 Players must have ball mark repair kit.
 Umbrellas and spare towels.
 Must have spare socks and trousers in case wading into a hazard to play a visible ball.
 Golf bags must not present a ghastly sight warranting replacement like dead tyres.

Golfing etiquettes and rules will be dwelt upon in the next segment.

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posted by Salman Aslam @ 9:21 AM,

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