By Robert Bicknell

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January 22, 2006

I have always felt that, psychologically, women are better suited to playing golf than men for the simple reason that women don’t have excess testosterone problems, which can lead to a mental affliction in males called "Machismo Stupidiosis".

Lets face facts…

Men are usually more concerned about how long it is and how stiff it is. For the record, I am talking about the length of drive and the shaft flex of their clubs, if you’re thinking something else, you need a holiday in Patpong.

Men always are easily impressed by massive distance off the tee, it really doesn’t matter how straight the shot goes as long as it goes far. This is a major reason why both a stupid movie like "Happy Gilmore" and golf ball manufacturers make a lot of money.

Another symptom of this syndrome is assuming they should use whatever clubs their favourite PGA Tour star uses, which has a shaft almost always three-times stiffer than their own. A lot of men brag to their friends how stiff their shafts are. Again, I am talking about golf clubs. If you’re thinking something else, please see a therapist.

Men almost always play off the wrong tee box for their skill levels. Go to any course in Vietnam and you will see players on the Blue tees. Check their handicaps and chances are over 50 per cent of them should be playing from the White tees. Why do they constantly do this?

Machismo Stupidosis.

Studies have shown that a lot of men are terrified that people will think less of them by playing an easier tee. This is a related condition called "Tee-less Envy". Unfortunately, this also leads to slow play and an erosion of the player’s self esteem when they fail to perform in front of other players.

Look, there is no shame in playing from the correct tee box for your skill level. Hey, I have a great time playing from the Blue tees and would play from the Whites if I thought I could get away with it. From the Pro tees all the bunkers come into play for me, but I can fly over them from the Blues or Whites and hit a wedge to the green, which is more fun.

Why kill yourself out there?

Consider this, if a low handicap player tees off from the same tees as a 20-handicapper, after the drives, the low handicap player will probably be hitting a wedge for the second shot, while the 20-handicapper will be hitting a 5-iron. Where is the fairness in that?

Another symptom of Machismo Stupidosis is that players usually overestimate the distance they hit their clubs because they mistakenly assume they will make perfect contact every time. In truth, most players with the syndrome come up short. Again, I am referring to the actual distance of the shot. If you’re thinking something else, you might have an inferiority complex and should seek help.

Most players would be better off taking one club longer than they think they need because that way, even if they hit a "less than perfect" shot, the ball will still get to the green. Longer is better sometimes…

Machismo Stupidosis also causes men to worry about the softness of their balls. Golf balls! Golf balls!

Higher handicap players would be better off using a harder ball because it spins less, but due to the syndrome they try to use the same high-spin rate ball that low handicap and Tour players use in the belief it will help their game when, in fact, the opposite is often true.

Most often than not, high handicap players will have more side-spin than backspin on their shots. Thus, a fade with a hard ball will become a major slice with a high-spin rate ball and a hook will become uncontrollable. Controlling your balls is vital to performing well…on the course, of course.

Lastly, most male players do not practice enough. Sure, the driving range is good, but not as good as the real thing. They should go to the course on quiet days and practice by themselves. Hit different shots from different tees and compare the results. All play and no practice can destroy your technique.

So, the golf lessons for today are : know your balls, stop worrying about your shaft and play with yourself more often.

Yes, I am talking about golf…

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