The 7 best ways to beat the heat on the golf course
The stakes are rising at this week’s ANA Inspiration and evidently, so are the temperatures. If you’re planning on tuning in this weekend, prepare yourself to see some of the game’s best players try to beat the heat as actively as their opponents.
It’s going to be hot in Racho Mirage, Calif. this week. Like really hot. If you don’t believe us, consider this: Thursday’s high of 99 degrees is forecasted to be the lowest temperature of any round this week by at least five degrees.
With temps expected well into the triple-digits (and as high as 110 degrees), LPGA officials have already gone to significant lengths to ensure the health and safety of those who will be walking the fairways at Mission Hills. Due to the extreme heat, organizers have prepared thousands of frozen towels, added additional water stations, and authorized caddies to drive carts or use push carts for the week.
And while you might not have the benefit of tents for shade or a caddie to carry your clubs, there are still plenty of things you can do to stay safe while playing in the blistering heat. Here are 7 of them:
7 keys to stay cool and hydrated in the heat
1. Hydrate (!): It doesn’t take an expert to know that staying hydrated on the course is a major key not only for staying healthy, but also for maintaining peak performance. Dehydration can cause serious short-term health problems, and studies have shown that maintaining a proper level of hydration can improve mood and focus. For those looking to save space, try electrolyte-loaded solutions like Pedialyte or Liquid IV over water (and if you can manage it, avoid alcohol, which only serves to make you more dehydrated).
2. Your umbrella’s *other* use: The perfect addition for members of push cart mafia, golf umbrellas have a not-so-secret second life. Attach one of these bad boys to the handle of your cart and enjoy a full day’s worth of shade for free.
3. And about your towel: Wash a golf or hand towel (microfiber work best), then douse it in ice-cold water or toss into the freezer. When it’s time to head to the course, add the towel to your cooler. The result? A cold compress that is equal parts refreshing and cooling.
4. Dry-Fit > Cotton: This should be law among your foursome, but if it’s not, make it one today. Dry-fit material is built for moisture-wicking — or in other words — keeping you comfortable, cool and mobile during your round. It’s hard enough to play in the blazing heat, don’t let your golf gear serve as a road block.
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5. Take a cart: If you’re playing in the heat, take some weight off your shoulders (literally). Take a golf cart, or if you’re more comfortable, a push cart. Not only will it lessen the burden on you physically, but it’ll also give you shade and a breeze.
6. Sweatproof sunscreen: Your eyes (and hands) will thank you later.
7. Don’t be a hero: If you start to feel light-headed, or run out of water early, there’s no shame in packing it in after 9, 11 or 15 holes. Fortunately for you (and unlike the women at this weekend’s ANA), golf isn’t your livelihood. Just as you wouldn’t play through a lightning storm or a hurricane, be mindful of how the heat is impacting your round, and don’t be afraid to leave early if the situation dictates as much.