Is it better to play golf listening to music or not listening to music? That’s Debatable

In GOLF’s all-new series That’s Debatable, sponsored by Cisco WebEx, we’re settling some of golf’s most heated disputes. Our writers and editors have been seeded 1-16, battling head-to-head to determine whose takes are most on point.

It’s surely the loudest argument in all of golf. Should you listen to music while you’re on the course, or should you enjoy the sounds of nature? In today’s edition of That’s Debatable, we crown a GOLF staff champion based on their ability to stay above the noise. In one corner is a noise purist, 3-seed Josh Sens, while facing the music in the other corner is 2-seed Michael Bamberger. You can watch their debate above or read their arguments below.

No Music (Sens)

  1. It’s not that you risk disturbing other players, although you do. The real offense is that you’re essentially saying that the pleasure and privilege of playing golf in a nice place with nice people is not enough. For some reason, you need more.
  2. People who bring music to the course are trying too hard to show they’re having fun. People who know golf know that the game is plenty fun as it is.
  3. People who bring music to the course think they’re cool, and then they blast yacht rock for the next four hours.
  4. The Masters broadcast has the most famous music in golf, and even they turn it off when players are hitting.
  5. You want music? Wear your headphones on the range, with your favorite tunes playing, then show up on the first tee without your bluetooth speaker. The only rhythm and melody you need should be in your swing.

Music (Bamberger)

  1. Every activity is better with music: It’s a mood-booster, a stress-eraser and most importantly, a vehicle for enjoyment. Isn’t that what golf is supposed to be all about?
  2. Figure Skating without music isn’t a sport: The argument that music doesn’t belong in sports is insane because music is woven into the fabric of some sports, like figure skating.
  3. Baseball needs the 7th inning stretch: What’s baseball without the 7th inning stretch? Something entirely different. Golf without music is something entirely different, too. And in either case, the product without music is worse.
  4. Golf needs to evolve with the times: It’s time golf reached the 21st century. If you can listen to music while you’re out on the course, why wouldn’t you?

Winner (by judge’s decision)

No Music! Bamberger’s rousing argument (and silky smooth moves) simply weren’t enough to unseat the tradition associated with no music on the course. Sens wins GOLF’s staff bracket, emerging as That’s Debatable’s amateur champion. He moves on to face our bracket’s professional winner, Keith Mitchell, in the final round! Keep it locked on and @GOLF_com on social media to follow along as “That’s Debatable” continues every day at noon!