Should Golf Be A Punishment?

Kim Anders
Director of Instruction
John Jacobs Golf Schools and Academies Estrella del Mar Golf and Beach Resort
Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico, AZ

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Would golf be better as a punishment than a leisure activity? Sometimes I think so. After all, it seems like most of the people I talk to at the end of their round are not happy with their games. They complain about how expensive golf and equipment is, how their new technology worked great until they paid for it – then it didn’t work any better than their old gear. They hate golf at the end of the round and frankly, it sounds to me as though people are looking for a reason to stop playing the game.

I’ve known people who have developed ulcers over their golf games, loss of sleep, loss of appetite, you name it. They’ve tried shaving beards and mustaches, growing them back, new hairdos, new swings, shorter fingernails, good luck underwear, come on!!  

Golf is a very difficult game. The difference between perfect and playing your third shot from the tee can be as little as a degree or two at impact and a few degrees on the swing path. Difficult things can be frustrating.

When Ben Hogan won the 1950 U.S. Open, he said he hit 4 perfect shots in 72 holes. That’s not very many for one of the greatest players ever. What right do we have to let this game tear our heart out almost every time we play it? You got that - we PLAY golf. Golf should be fun!!

I have an idea – instead of sending criminals to country club prisons where they have extensive law libraries, state-of-the-art computer facilities,  exercise equipment, and music programs, etc., etc…why don’t we make them play golf so they can get the same “enjoyment” from the game as we do?

Example: For robbery you need to break 80 to be released – commit murder and you have to shoot even par. Forget about getting your law degree or building up your muscles in the weight room. Let’s frustrate these guys by making them play golf. Just imagine the guy that’s been in prison for many years, working on his game in hopes of some day playing well enough to be released. He’s having the game of his life, and only needs to make a three foot downhill putt that slides left to right for his “Get Out of Jail Free” card. What are the odds he’ll make it? I have trouble making this when I’m playing my buddies for a margarita!!

I have a feeling laws will never change to where a prison release is dependent on a person’s golf game. I have a feeling I will never be imprisoned and GET to play golf everyday. I, also, have a feeling I will spend the rest of my life struggling with the game I love and hate, can’t beat and can’t quit, lose sleep over and can’t sleep without...

Kim Anders is Director of Golf at Estrella del Mar Golf & Beach Resort in Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico. You can reach Kim via email at or call 1.888.587.0609, Ext. 3010. Find out more about the golf resort by visiting