True Grit and Preparation - Get ready for Winter Golf in Scotland! by Mike Buchan
With playing regularly in the North East of Scotland Golfers’ Alliance competitions every Wednesday, there is always the uncertainty of what the weather in our corner of Scotland will bring. Being a member of the Alliance is a brilliant way to stay active and maintain your game during the low season months.
The Alliance has been on the go for over 80 years, with the Championship Uniroyal Quaich first played for in 1935 so there’s a lot of history and you’ll probably be surprised to learn about the many famous members past and present.
The Alliance provides amateurs the rare opportunity to play with pro’s, including previous European Tour winners and Major champions such as Paul Lawrie. This can be quite a novelty for the average golfer keen to improve their game and maintain form year round.
With around 150 members, and up to 100 players participating in weekly competitions between September and March, the alliance is proof that there really is no bad weather in Scotland…. (only bad / or the wrong clothing!)
At Buchan & Byers we believe the prepared golfer is one who comes to the course ready with an umbrella, a good quality rain suit, and in cooler months, a wooly hat and a pair of mitts. Not to mention a change of clothes altogether in case of sudden heavy rain showers, when a change of shirt and dry socks will be very welcome as you head off to the “19th” and much deserved final “hole”
For a good few years now I’ve enjoyed shopping for golf gear at Kings Links Golf Centre in Aberdeen - they have a great selection and a knowledgeable, friendly team. (We’re also fortunate to have a choice of other good shops including Cruden Bay, Hazelhead, Kemnay, Gamola and Paul Lawrie Golf Centre to name a few) So I recently popped in at the Kings links for a quick look around and caught up with retail manager Steven Strachan.
Steven has been at the Kings Links Golf Centre since it opened, almost 30 years ago. Steven’s experience in the trade is second to none, having dealt personally with thousands of golfers from the north east and farther afield. One of the successes of the Kings Links Golf Centre is the experience of the team, led by Paul Girvan (Director of Golf) who like Steven, has been at the Kings Links since it opened 29 years ago.
I’m told in the sales team, the average length of service is over 15 years. This level of experience ensures customers have the most qualified and experienced staff helping them with their golf games. Steven says ... “at the Kings Links we have a wide range of comfortable warm clothing ideal for the winter golfer from leading brand names such as ‘Galvin Green’ and ‘Under Armour’, the winter golfer will find exactly what they need to swing freely and keep warm”...“our crossover brands like J. Lindeberg and Hugo Boss always prove popular, with more "off-course" items (shirts and jackets for casual wear) selling well at this time of year".
Although we Alliance golfers look forward to the weekly round, we also know there is a real risk of challenging weather conditions as we head into the coldest winter months. But, with true Alliance grit and a wee bit of preparation it can be a very enjoyable experience.
A round of golf still takes around 4 hours regardless of the time of year, so to give yourself every chance of playing well and handling the elements remember the six ‘P’s – Precise Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance.
Heathland or Links?
When playing an inland course in winter it is especially advisable to make sure your golf shoes are water tight. and have a change of ready socks at the end of the round. A good sales person will be able to identify the best options for you.
If you’re heading to a Links course you’ll be more exposed to the elements ( that nippy North Sea “breeze”) so make sure you have plenty layers of body warming clothing ie. Skin tight under garment, golf shirt, thermal top and maybe also a body warmer – (“Cold Gear Mocks and the Daytona tops from Under Armour are popular purchases at Kings Links” )
Choose clothing that will keep the wind chill out and also allow your swing to remain
Useful accessories for winter golf would be as follows:
1. Winter Golf Mitts - Motocaddy Hot Mitts
that attach to compatible golf trolleys.
2. Pocket warmers
3. Thermal leggings
4. The Snood
5. Good quality Umbrella
6. Warm Toorie
7. Waterproof cover for the golf bag on the trolley
8. Protein Bars
10. A positive attitude 😊