Top Tips for Playing Golf in Chilly Weather

Q&A with Pound Ridge General Manager Todd Leavenworth

Cold weather is here to stay, but that shouldn’t deter golfers from getting out on the course. Playing golf in chilly conditions may have some extra challenges, but is still a fun and rewarding experience. Pound Ridge Golf Club is open for play throughout the winter, and closes only when there is snow on the ground. General Manager Todd Leavenworth breaks down the top tips for cold weather golf below.

Q: With balls carrying less distance in cooler air, do you recommend any change in the makeup of clubs in the bag?

A: No club changes are necessary, however, the golf ball you use could help in colder conditions. Always switch to a lower compression ball. Golf balls in the 75 to 90 range will compress better under very cold conditions. This way you are not giving up too much distance, and you still get a little feel around the greens under colder weather.

Q: Do you tend to find that green speeds are affected in the cold? Faster? Slower?

A: Yes, faster. Greens will usually start to go dormant during the winter months. This means the grass will stop growing, and the ground will get harder. This will cause green speeds to increase and become much quicker.

Q: Do you prefer “new” performance wear? Or old school wool and cotton?

A: It doesn’t matter which materials you choose to stay warm during the winter golf months, but make sure to use clothing specifically designed for golf. Try to wear golf-specific clothing with enough flexibility to make a full golf swing amid several layers of clothing.

Q: Should you consider walking, instead of riding?

A: Walk whenever possible. Not only does the average golfer play faster walking, but blood flows to your muscles and core body parts helping keep you warm and somewhat flexible.

Q: Colder months mean less daylight. What’s the latest time you’d suggest a tee time for 18-holes? 9-holes?

A: Always give yourself around four hours to play 18-holes, and two hours to play 9-holes. With that said, the average golfer should try and complete his or her round no later than 30 minutes before sunset for safety and courtesy towards the golf staff who otherwise must close the course in the dark.

Q: Any other tips for playing in cold weather?

A: Try to keep your golf clubs and golf balls warm before hitting the golf course. This means possibly putting clubs in the back seat on the way to the golf course instead of putting them in a car trunk.  Also, be careful not to damage any part of the golf course during the cold winter months. The damage will not heal and may need to be replaced in the spring when the grass starts growing again.  Ideally, try to pick the ball clean off the fairways instead of taking large deep divots.  Most of all, have fun and enjoy the day outside. Don't worry about score as much during the colder winter months on the golf course.

Book your tee time today at Pound Ridge.