The most important thing in your golf bag, according to Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods places his driver back into his golf bag.

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Welcome to Stuff Golfers Should Know, a GOLF.com series in which we reveal all kinds of useful golf (and life!) wisdom that is sure to make you the smartest, savviest and most prepared player in your foursome.

Your golf bag has it all, or at least it’s supposed to be. Even the 12-handicaps who pride themselves on minimalism are bound to carry a pencil, balls, tees, markers, divot tools, clubs, maybe a scorecard holder, a marker, a rangefinder, etc. 

Elevate that amount of goodies to the Tour level with those massive bags and the ingredients seem to double. You’ll find snacks, training aids, rain gear … But one of these things is more important than any other, according to some simple deduction from Tiger Woods.

“It’s something you use on every shot,” Woods said during his guest appearance on the newly launched “Another Golf Podcast” from Bridgestone, one of his major sponsors. Naturally, a Bridgestone player was going to say some complimentary things about the importance of a golf ball, but Woods does make some good sense in his back and forth with hosts Adam Rehberg and Emilia Migliaccio.

“The ball testing, that’s what people don’t realize. It’s something you use on every shot, okay?” Woods said. “What is the most important thing in your golf bag? It’s the golf ball because it’s something you use on absolutely every shot.

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“My philosophy — you know from working with me,” Woods continued. “I start from the green back. Why do I do that? That’s how I started the game. I started with putting, chipping, wedging irons, fairway woods, driver. That’s how my dad taught me how to play the game. When I take time off, what do I do. I start off putting that day, then chipping in the afternoon, the next day with short irons, then long irons and eventually its woods. But I still start near the green.”

Woods is a notorious grinder when it comes to getting his game into form, but he admitted to not exactly loving club testing. But ball testing is different, and Woods apparently really enjoys that. 

“As you know, I like to hear a certain sound,” he told Rehberg. “I don’t like that clicky sound. It drives me nuts. We’ve worked on audible noise. I like a certain sound. Audibly, I’ve been in the same range from 2000 to now, it’s in the same range audibly. The same thing with the golf ball — I still want to be able to curve it. I’ve always played the spinniest ball on Tour because I grew up in that era [with] balata golf balls. I’ve been able to take stuff off a golf ball. I’m not good at putting spin on a golf ball. I’ve never been good at, but I can take spin off it really well. Like Fred [Couples]. I can hit those little shots. It’s the putting big spin on the golf ball that I’m not good at.”

These are rather revealing admissions from Woods, who has made a career out of only giving audiences little bits of information. He often only answers the question he’s been asked, and even that is stretching some of his press conference. But on a podcast with one of his sponsors, Woods was as open as ever. He went on to explain why the various aspects of his new Bridgestone ball work for him.

You can listen in to Woods on the podcast episode below, including his thoughts on Fred Couples, Rory McIlroy and his recovery process after his car crash. 

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Sean Zak

Golf.com Editor

Zak is a writer and host for various GOLF.com video properties and podcasts. Check out his travels on Destination Golf and his latest thoughts on the Drop Zone Podcast:

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