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Why do you watch tournament golf on television? Is it to entertain or to learn?


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Mostly entertainment but I suppose something is learned whether we realize it or not.

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My primary purpose is entertainment but, I believe we all inevitably learn something by tuning in. I feel that the interactions between some of the caddies and players have some strong possibilities of passing on good knowledge to viewers. 

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For me TV golf is for entertainment. 

  • I can't watch a swing and learn anything. 
  • Since we only see random shots,  you can't really get into their course strategy and thought process (the occasional player/caddie interaction gives a little).   When Phil was on the match and he described his lie assessment and shot approach it was interesting.  
  • based on what I have learned from course management systems, the announcers don't communicate what they are doing accurately.
  • Occasionally there will be a troubled lie where you might get a nugget of info, but not worth watching the entire event for. 

I feel that anything that I might lean from watching 4 hours of entertainment can be searched for and found more easily elsewhere.   My golf level is more about making golf simple and working on "perfecting" basic/stock type shots.   I feel things like course  management, mental focus, and stock shots should be able to get me to pretty close to scratch and aren't things TV golf communicates well.  

 

If you want to learn, I think there are significantly better ways to assess professional golfers.

Post tournament assessments via Shotlink

  • Scott Fawcett will occasionally do webinars post tournament and show the players shots on shot link which will get into how the players actually played the course.  and give a basic idea of targeting strategies since you see all the shots the players hit.

Attending events in person

  • Practice days are ideal since you can watch players on the range and putting green.  You can see how and what they practice and what aids they use
  • Volunteering for on course positions.   I loved being the walking scorer since you followed a group for 18 holes and heard the caddie/player interactions and understood how they were attacking the course.   Better than just  attending since you got better perspective on the players shots.  

 

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It's fun watching how golf is supposed to be played, and I feel better when I see pros hit bad shots like I do... chunking a chip, not getting ball out of a bunker, leaving a putt woefully short or blast way past the cup.  While watching impressive stripe shows is entertaining, I most enjoy watching how the best players in the world recover from bad situations.  I also like to see the various courses... the hole layouts, types of grass, and adjustments that are made to best avoid bad locations.

We don’t stop playing the game because we get old; we get old because we stop playing the game.”

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14 minutes ago, cnosil said:

For me TV golf is for entertainment. 

  • I can't watch a swing and learn anything. 
  • Since we only see random shots,  you can't really get into their course strategy and thought process (the occasional player/caddie interaction gives a little).   When Phil was on the match and he described his lie assessment and shot approach it was interesting.  
  • based on what I have learned from course management systems, the announcers don't communicate what they are doing accurately.
  • Occasionally there will be a troubled lie where you might get a nugget of info, but not worth watching the entire event for. 

I feel that anything that I might lean from watching 4 hours of entertainment can be searched for and found more easily elsewhere.   My golf level is more about making golf simple and working on "perfecting" basic/stock type shots.   I feel things like course  management, mental focus, and stock shots should be able to get me to pretty close to scratch and aren't things TV golf communicates well.  

 

If you want to learn, I think there are significantly better ways to assess professional golfers.

Post tournament assessments via Shotlink

  • Scott Fawcett will occasionally do webinars post tournament and show the players shots on shot link which will get into how the players actually played the course.  and give a basic idea of targeting strategies since you see all the shots the players hit.

Attending events in person

  • Practice days are ideal since you can watch players on the range and putting green.  You can see how and what they practice and what aids they use
  • Volunteering for on course positions.   I loved being the walking scorer since you followed a group for 18 holes and heard the caddie/player interactions and understood how they were attacking the course.   Better than just  attending since you got better perspective on the players shots.  

 

I take many lessons from watching television golf, I suppose one of them is confirmation on "trends" by the current best in the world. Small shifts like "the best players in the world are using the interlocking grip" why is that? is it better? does it help release the club better? is it because their right hand (for a right handed golfer) is stronger and works better? " Why are the best golfers in the world gripping down on their clubs? Why are the best players in the world bump and running the ball with their hybrids, or why aren't they? 

Little things like that that help me ask the questions or I suppose to your point I could search it out on youtube but that is not my thing yet, I usually talk to my peers and coach about those things. 

My takeaway is that I get to see the best of the best in the sport from around the world, what an opportunity for me to learn. 

Another small thing I like is how the best in the world play in conditions that we all play in wind, rain, cold etc, not cold so much lol, but even the gear they wear ie, Phil wears rain gloves and most players don't why is that? So I will look into that or think about the "why" behind that. 

The takeaways are endless for me. I cant just watch to be entertained for some reason except the Masters since I know the course so well, not the green complexes but the course and I find it really interesting how the best in the world today play it compare the best in the world 60 years ago. 

Just a few things, I know there are a lot more...

 

committed to performance excellence

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I had to think about this question for a bit.  I realized that I tend to pay more attention to shotmaking and course management when watching the LPGA v PGA.  I hit the ball about the same distance as some of the LPGA players.  I like seeing how they approach the game: strategy, club selection, etc.    

 

I don't have a 200 yard 7 iron, so I have a hard time relating to the PGA distances.  

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Major tournaments are more for the entertainment aspect of the game. 

I don't watch but a few times other than that and I tend to really pay attention to form and movement when I do watch those rounds.  I don't care really how "pure" or "correct" the swing is because my swing will never be picture perfect.  Plenty of the pros don't match that description but they hit the ball so well and being able to watch the motion has helped me correct some things over the years.   

 

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Watching pros play golf to learn is like watching F1 to learn how to drive a mini van. 

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It’s about entertainment. But i think there are things that cns gleaned from watching pro golf. Some from the golfers and what type of shot they play into a green, out of rough. Some from the player and caddie interaction that the broadcast shows and some from the former pros or caddies and their analysis and commentary about what the player is probably thinking, how they would approach the situation, etc.

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Entertainment. Pros are on a whole other level that I would be foolish to think I could replicate anything they do. 

However now even the entertainment aspect is dwindling..

Rather the stories and hopeful suspense of what could be during a tournament.

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We really are limited in what the telecast allows us to view. There is entertainment when two or more players are battling to take home the championship. There are many things that can be learned. Not that we can execute the way they do. However, I love player and caddie interaction. I like seeing how they approach a hole and their course management. I also like watching the magic they have in the short game. To really learn, I would rather go to a tournament live. Watch the work on the range and the practice rounds prior to the tournament.

Play like a champion today!

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Watching a PGA golf event on TV for me is just for entertainment and to admire the course. Looking at the conditions they get compared to what we get is drool worthy. But if I want to learn something or see how a shot is played I prefer to watch the LPGA. Their game is closer to mine.

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Watching a tournament is definitely for entertainment. If I’m watching golf to try and learn something it’s probably YT. 

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I started watching when I started to play the game to try and learn from them. It was hard though because the telecasts back then weren't very good. So I didn't watch that much until the 90s, the telecasts were much better but then I tried doing things they were doing especially with a 60 degree wedge. I had to take it out of the bag because I was doing to many stupid things with it, phil Michelson I am not. 

Frank musolino 

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In Jan & Feb I watch to vicariously visit a warm location.  Other than that i watch only the majors which I watch for entertainment and to ridicule the announcers when they nearly have a heart attack over a shot from what they deem as a bad lie.   I'd love to show them a bad lie that is encountered at the local muni.....maybe a ball in the heel of a sasquatch print in a sand trap that the rules of golf say I must play out of.....  😆

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80/20 on the entertainment side of things. Like was mentioned,  you can learn from more dedicated sources, however I do learn more about the players, the rules, the different styles of swings,  equipment,  etc from watching tournaments on TV.

While I don't have a favorite player, or share a preference of one over another, I do find myself enjoying watching them compete.  Occasionally my wife balks at me when they duff a shot and I yell out "hey, they are one of us!"  Hehe

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While I primarily watch for entertainment, I do pay attention to the choices they make for certain shots to see if I can glen a nugget or two for my own game. These are mostly shots around the green or out of the bunker. Looking to learn why they chose a running pitch instead of more of a lobbed shot. Or how they play 20-30 yard green side bunker shot and do they play a less lofted wedge. Stuff like that mostly. The best was when I had the opportunity to follow Fred Couples for 18 holes at the US Senior Open a couple years ago and really tried to focus on his tempo to see if I could take anything away for my own swing. His swing is absolute butter.  

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11 minutes ago, Preeway said:

While I primarily watch for entertainment, I do pay attention to the choices they make for certain shots to see if I can glen a nugget or two for my own game. These are mostly shots around the green or out of the bunker. Looking to learn why they chose a running pitch instead of more of a lobbed shot. Or how they play 20-30 yard green side bunker shot and do they play a less lofted wedge. Stuff like that mostly. The best was when I had the opportunity to follow Fred Couples for 18 holes at the US Senior Open a couple years ago and really tried to focus on his tempo to see if I could take anything away for my own swing. His swing is absolute butter.  

I think it was 1977 or 1978, I played in the British Columbia Amateur at Marine Drive in Vancouver BC. Fred Couples came up from Seattle to play in the tournament, he was by far the longest player in the field and i believe he won it that year. Even back then he had a buttery swing... 

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I watch PGA, LPGA & DP World Tour tournaments as much as I can. I'm pretty much as addicted to watching as I am to playing. I guess I feel like I can live vicariously through the players, but mainly it comes down to enjoying their skill and sometimes their mistakes as well. Watching someone stuff it to tap in range from 180 or chip it in from a difficult location gives me as much of a thrill as watching TJ Watt sack a QB.
The other thing I really enjoy is the competition itself and seeing how players react to the pressure of getting in position to win, especially on Sundays, or just having to make the cut. There's always some drama going on whether good or bad.

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Watching golf is mostly entertainment for me. For the same reason I enjoy watching other pro sports, it's fascinating to watch athletes that can do things I cannot.

I definitely try to learn a bit too from watching, but it's incredibly difficult to recreate what you see on TV. I try to focus more on how these players manage the courses than how they strike the ball.

Alternatively, I believe amateurs can learn a lot more about how a swing should look from watching LPGA events. My dad always told me growing up to watch how easy the women swing and how straight they hit the ball. He would say it's a lot easier to relate to those swings versus the top male athletes swinging at speeds I couldn't dream of.

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I watch to see the location, the course and the shot making.  Tight competition can add to the drama.  

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