It is a golfer’s prerogative to play the game with hickory-shafted clubs while dressed in knickers and a Tam o’ Shanter cap. Golf is a sport absorbed with honoring its past.
Golfers should also be willing to embrace the lightning fast, futuristic technological advances available that make the game quicker and more enjoyable.
There are recreational golfers who will employ every Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) tool at their fingertips to navigate their way to the golf course. Then, after teeing off, insist on stalking elusive yardage markers in the fairways, walking off distances and then determining plus or minus yardages based on pin positions. If the time-consuming and frequently flawed calculations don’t lead to a hosel rocket shot into the woods, they, at minimum, grind on the nerves of playing partners waiting their turn to play.
And it is unnecessary.
The instantaneous and accurate measurements of rangefinders and golf GPS devices are akin to having PGA Tour caddies Mike “Fluff” Cowan or Jim “Bones” McKay on your bag pulling the correct clubs. You still have to execute the shot, but the second-guessing has mostly been eliminated.
As an industry, golf continues to battle the plague of slow play. The time it takes to determine correct yardages is one issue that should already be resolved. Speeding up the game and potentially shaving multiple shots off scores are win-win advantages of the currently available high-tech measurement gadgets.
Badgering your playing partners for constant distance reads because of your skinflint tendencies to not own your own, however, defeats their purpose. You might as well ask your buddy to borrow their driver on every hole and if they mind if you take swigs from their can of Budweiser.
Employing game-changing and score-improving tools such as rangefinders and GPS devices is the equivalent of having an approved 15th club in the arsenal. While respecting golf’s history is one its charms, embracing its advances can be equally rewarding.