Your best 'playing in cold weather' golf tips | A Quick Nine

Cold weather golf
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Cold weather golf might not be the most fun golf there is -- but it's still golf.
By T.J. Auclair
PGA.com
Connect with T.J.

Series: A Quick Nine

Published: Wednesday, November 06, 2013 | 12:53 p.m.

Unfortunately for many of us around the country, golf season is coming to a sad, sad end. In parts of the Northeast, for instance, it's as if we skipped the fall season and went straight to winter with lows already in the 20s.

Sure, it all comes with the territory, but that doesn't mean those of us in areas of the country where the winters are frighteningly cold aren't still golf junkies dying for the spring to arrive.

Some of us -- maybe you? -- are more hardcore than others. You don't let a little frigid weather or maybe even snow get in the way of your golf.

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For those of you not as crazy, we reached out to the hardcores for this week -- the nearly 194K strong in PGA.com Facebook Nation (click here to join the masses) -- and asked: What's your best "playing in cold weather" tip?

With nearly 250 responses, there were a lot of great answers to choose from. Here are the best:

9. Move someplace warm. OK, not exactly the "tip" we were looking for, but since so many responded in this fashion, we gave it the No. 9 spot.

Facebook fan quote:

"My ultimate cure for all that ails you in terms of cold weather golf... step 1... move South... step 2... play more golf... step 3... send annoying reminders to friends who are still freezing their kanoogies off reminding them its 70 degrees and sunny out... step 4 play more golf." -- Thomas Ferraro

8. Enjoy an adult beverage. Be responsible, of course, but again here -- too many of you suggested this tip that it was impossible to leave off the list. Personally, I like springing for the hot chocolate instead. The cup can also serve as a hand warmer (which, is also coming up on this list!).

7. Wear an extra pair of socks. Along with golf, this bit of advice can also apply to skiing. For my money, there's nothing worse than cold feet and cold ears.

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6. Have a realistic goal and stick to it. When the temperatures dip -- no matter how many trips you make to the range, or how much time you spend on a practice green -- you're not likely to be setting any personal records on the course. As long as you accept that beforehand, the round will be far more enjoyable.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Mental: commit early that you will not even complain." -- Wayne Smith

"Stay positive because in cold weather over half the field does not want to be there. Meaning you only have to beat half the people." -- Taylor Fontaine

"Maintain perspective: whether it is 34 degrees outside or 78, be grateful that our lives, good fortune and our health permit us to play the greatest game on earth. Have fun, go low, shake hands and meet me at the bar." -- Brian McAvoy

"Good advice is.... don't go into these rounds expecting your lowest score of the season. Just go out with some good friends and enjoy the time on the course before the snow falls." -- Kevin Hanzel

5. Use a softer golf ball. You may not hit the ball as far with a softer-covered golf ball, but you'll at least have a little more feel. Feel, by the way, is something you're never going to have much of playing in colder weather.

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4. Club up in the cold because the ball won't travel as far. Your muscles are going to be tight. You're certainly not as loose as you are in warm, humid conditions. Your golf ball is experiencing the same characteristics. Take an extra club. If you hit 8-iron from 145 yards, hit a 7-iron instead.

Facebook fan quote:

"Remember to club up and hit punch shots through the wind if need be. Bring your umbrella and waterproof gear out to the links just to be safe. And if it's just cold and windy then you should bring your wind breakers. Long johns are sometimes necessary and your coffee, coco or tea. Sometimes when it's wet and soggy you should wear high top waterproof golf shoes." -- Christopher Boland

3. Wear layers. This should probably go without saying, but we'll throw it out there anyway. Pretty elementary, right? You can always peel layers off, but you can't add them if you don't have them with you.

Facebook fan quote:

"Proper layers. Keeping things breathable and dry is a chess match against the elements. Dont play to score, play within your game and focus to improve your outcomes. Dont get down on the thins, chucks, or the what the's." -- Travis Scudder

2. Carry hand warmers. This will certainly help your feel. And, they're cheap! Stuff them in your pockets and keep your hands in your pockets between shots.

Facebook fan quotes:

"Hand warmers in your pocket with a ball in your pocket. Keeps ball warm. Also where gloves if driving cart. Helps keep hands warm." -- Paul Bouchie (Editor's note: Just so you know, using a hand-warmer to warm your golf ball is a breach of the Rules of Golf. Decision 14-3/13.5 says that a ball purposely warmed during a round with an artificial device [in this case, a hand warmer] is a breach. You can, however, use the warmers for your hands according to decision 14-3/13 -- an artificial device used traditionally is accepted.)

"A very important part of your swing is your grip, and with cold hands it's hard to get a good grip, so I would have to go with hand warmers." -- Bill Armstrong

1. Don't take a cart -- walk instead. We realize this may not be a possibility for all of you and that's OK. But, if you are able to walk the course, you will also keep warmer. You're blood will be flowing, you're less likely to stiffen up. Great advice!

Facebook fan quotes:

"WALK, WALK, WALK! Get the blood flowing! That as well as hand warmers and some 'Par Juice' and you won't notice the cold, just the shot you're playing next! Get out of the carts during cold, lazy=cold=higher scores!" -- Cody Schoenrock

"We play almost year 'round, (central Illinois). Walk the course always to keep the blood flowing. Actually, if it's not windy you can play in relative comfort provided you wear layers and it helps to keep some gloves handy and to wear between shots if the fingers start getting cold. A calm, 35-40 degree day is not too bad and if the sun is out it isn't bad at all. If the wind is blowing steady put on a pot of coffee, get the cards out and play gin in the clubhouse." -- Mike Osterbur

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.
 

T.J. Auclair is a Senior Interactive Producer for PGA.com and has covered professional golf since 1998, traveling to over 60 major championships. You can follow him on Twitter, @tjauclair.