Lightning and golf don't mix. Facts about the dangers of lightning from PGA of America

By Brendon Elliot
Published on

As we find ourselves in the middle of the stormy summer months here in Florida and many other spots around the country, I feel compelled to share some important information on golf and lightning. I can not stress this enough, lightning and golf do not mix. Taking a chance and hitting a few more shots or going one more hole could prove deadly. As a golf coach and instructor, some may say that I am, on occasion, over cautious. However, did you know that lightning often strikes outside of heavy rain, and may occur as far as 10 miles away from any rainfall? This and other lightning facts can be found below and are important to know for any golfer. Stay safe and remember, golf, no matter how great, is just a game and not worth risking your life.

Some facts you might not know about lightning:

 • Air in a lightning strike can be heated up to 50,000 degrees Fahrenheit. The rapid heating of the air is what produces the shockwave that results in thunder.

 • Lightning often strikes outside of heavy rain, and may occur as far as 10 miles away from any rainfall.

 • Most lightning incidents occur when people are caught outdoors in the summer months during the afternoon and evening (between 2:00-6:00 p.m.).

 • A ground strike can produce somewhere between 100 million to one billion volts of electricity.

 • The length of a cloud-to-ground lightning strike can range from two miles to 10.

 • Lightning strike victims, contrary to what some movies portray, carry no post-strike electrical charge, and should be assisted immediately.

Remember to head indoors as soon as it is safely possible. For more information on lightning and thunderstorms, you can visit

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