12 Golf Facts That May Surprise You

There has been much debate on where the game of golf was invented… we like to think it was in Scotland and it is fitting therefore that St Andrews is known as the ‘home of golf’. The game has many other interesting facts… some may surprise! Take a look at the list and see if you know them all!

12 Golf facts that may surprise you!


• St Andrew’s has had the greatest effect on the origin of golf. It’s course was initially built with 22 holes but these were later reduced to 18. New courses followed suit and it became the standard.

• Starting in 1457, golf was banned throughout Scotland by the nation’s Parliament, which believed it interfered with residents’ military training. This ban was repeated twice more, in 1471 and 1491. Nearly 300 years later, The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews was founded.

• The youngest and oldest golfers ever to win the Masters Tournament was the same person! In 1963 and at age 23, Jack Nicklaus became the youngest golfer to win the Masters. He became the tournament’s oldest winner when he won it for the sixth time in 1986 at age 46. But then the great Tiger Woods nipped in and became the youngest in 1997 at the age of 21 years, 104 days!

• Golf balls travel significantly farther in hot weather. The warmer the ball is, the more resilient the rubber becomes. A warmer golf ball has more elasticity, which causes the ball to leave the club with more force.

• Is there anything that matches the feeling one has when they make a hole-in-one? How about two in one round? Recently, Oakland University’s Kassandra Komma did just that, recording two ones on her scorecard in nine holes. But, the odds are incredibly low, at one in 64 million!

• The longest ever pro golf drive was made in 1974 by Mike Austin. It traveled a monstrous 515 yards!

• The longest putt ever was a whopping 125 yards. Fergus Muir sank that one in 2001 on the Eden Course in Scotland.

• A regulation golf ball has 336 dimples.

• An American named Ab Smith coined the term “birdie” in 1899. Thrilled with his performance, he said it was a “bird of a shot.”

• The youngest golfer to ever sink a hole-in-one was from right here in Littleton, Colorado. His name is Coby Orr and he made the historic shot in 1975 at only five years old.

• The word “golf” does NOT stand for “gentlemen only, ladies forbidden.” That is an internet myth. In fact, about 23% of professional golfers are female.

• Golf is very good exercise. A 175-pound man can burn 460 calories if he carries his clubs during an hour of play. On a nine-hole course, he can end up walking almost 2.5 miles.


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