When I was asked to create a post for the new Cleveland Metroparks Blog, FootGolf was the only thing on my mind!
Growing up a soccer player in Northeast Ohio and later becoming a certified coach, the game isn’t completely foreign to me. We used to play our own version of FootGolf all the time - although we never had a golf course to play on. We’d simply take a corner flag, place it somewhere on the field, and see who could hit the flag in the least amount of kicks. Simple as that!
What I didn’t know is that this game is actually a sport played worldwide. In June 2012, the first FootGolf World Cup was held in Hungary, and shortly after the United States officially named FootGolf a sport. And here I was thinking my friends and I were the only ones that played this marvelous game!
Here are the top 7 reasons you should be as pumped as I am about FootGolf:
1. You don’t need soccer or golf experience to enjoy the sport.
FootGolf is a hybrid version of soccer and golf, but it’s not only for soccer players and golfers. In fact, FootGolf is a great sport for everyone. If you are capable of kicking a ball, you can play FootGolf! Girls, boys, men, women, kids and adults are all welcome to give it a kick.
2. It’s easy to learn and doesn’t require much equipment.
Photo Courtesy of www.footgolf.net
The rules are pretty simple. I won’t get into specifics here, but let me explain the gist of it. Like golf, each hole has a teeing area and a set par. Simply place a size 5 regulation soccer ball in the teeing area, find the flag marking the hole, and give it a kick (yes, there are specific oversized holes that your soccer ball will fall into. You do not need to get it to land perfectly on the tiny golf hole). Each kick counts as a point. When the ball is in the hole, you are done with that round and total up your points. Just like golf, you want the least amount of points possible. All you need is a soccer ball, a course and a way to keep score!
3. It’s good exercise.
There isn’t the fast pace, extensive running of soccer, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a great way to exercise! Ditch the golf cart and walk the course to get your heart pumping and your legs moving. You’re also going to want to stretch out your legs to make those long shots!
4. It’s a great way to show off your style.
FootGolf is played in golf attire, so grab your knee high argyle socks, fedoras and visors and get to the course. Remember – no soccer cleats are allowed on the greens!
5. It can be super competitive or super chill.
You’ll get out of FootGolf exactly what you put into it. Growing up the only girl between two boys molded me into quite the competitor, but it is totally up to the players how competitive the game will be. FootGolf is a great way to unwind with friends. I know it’s hard to picture after these arctic blasts, but being outside with friends and a ball at your feet may just be the perfect way to start or end your day. If you’re a serious FootGolfer, you can compete amongst your friends, or check out reason number 6 explaining why FootGolf is so awesome!
6. There are FootGolf leagues and tournaments.
The official FootGolf league in the United States is the American FootGolf League (AFGL). Check out their website to learn about upcoming tournaments you might enjoy. Who knows – the next FootGolf World Cup Champion could be you!
7. It’s coming to Cleveland Metroparks Mastick Woods Golf Course
You read that right my friends! Starting spring 2014, you can head on over to Mastick Woods Golf Course, sign up for a tee time and get FootGolfing! Keep an eye on www.clevelandmetroparks.com/footgolf to stay up-to-date on everything Cleveland Metroparks FootGolf has to offer!
Until then, Just Kick it!