When COVID-19 is said and done—hopefully sooner rather than later—one of the unexpected beneficiaries of a mostly tragic event could be golf. As an outdoor activity that naturally allows for social distancing, golf has become an outlet for people who only played once or twice a year in the before times.
And at my local course, anyway, these new, recently “regular” players include a lot of kids, teens, and women. So if you kids, teens, and partners are listening, this means you have a good chance of getting Mom hooked on the game. This is your time, and this is your Mother’s Day.
And this is a list of ideas for gifts to take advantage.
Plastics may be necessary for some things, but golf tees ain’t one of them. And chopping down hardwood timber for golf tees doesn’t seem quite right, either. Enter Ocean Tees, made from Moso bamboo farmed exclusively in the company’s 100-hectare in Jiangxi Provence, China, under strict environmental controls. This kind of bamboo is 4x stronger than hardwood. The packaging is even made from recycled (and recyclable) material. The tees come in short, long, mixed, and “castle” versions (4 British pounds per box online, and they accept PayPal). I’ve found the castle tees to be most durable in dry turf conditions where even my previous plastic tees snapped every few drives.
If you feel like exploring the Ocean Tees website further, you’ll find that they also sell golf apparel. Their polos, sweaters, and other apparel (from 49 British pounds) are produced in the only factory in Europe that meets Greenpeace’s textile procurement standards. Both women’s and men’s lines are woven from blends of organic cotton and proprietary degradable elastane. And none of the process or packaging contains any virgin plastic.
Srixon, Callaway, OnCore, Wilson golf balls
We’re living in a golden age for golf balls. It wasn’t long ago that all we had to choose from was one good ball and a gaggle of rocks. And the good ball was 3x the price of the rocks. Now the market offers a cornucopia of golf balls, from behemoths like Titleist to smaller boutique manufacturers. All of them offer a range of feel, firmness, and price to appeal to players of any levels and preferences. And the colors! Reds, pinks, yellows, fluorescent greens, blues, oranges – practically any color you can imagine. Heck, there are even multi-colored balls now. Srixon’s Q-Star Divide ($33) is one-half yellow and one-half red. The company claims this combination aids in aligning putts and seeing the ball in the air.
If Mom is a bit more of a traditionalist, Callaway’s new ERC Soft and Supersoft golf balls ($35) feature “triple-track technology”—three lines, to help line up putts. These balls are arguably the softest on the market that have succeeded in squeezing every possible bit of distance out of a design optimized for feel thanks to Dow PARALOID Impact Modifier technology.
If Mom wants to go alternative, the Buffalo, New York-based Oncore offers a range of balls at three price-points—the Avant 55 ($20), Elixr ($30), and the new tour-caliber Vero X1 ($40).
Finally, if you want to personalize your gift, check out the Wilson Duo Optix with custom text ($22). Mom will be pretty sad when she loses one of these!
Wilson Staff Eco Stand Bag
Show your love for Mom and Mother Earth at the same time by giving her the Wilson Staff Eco Stand Bag ($150). This bag is made from over 50 recycled plastic water bottles (verified by Global Recycled Standards 4.0). Durable, functional, and stylish, the Eco Stand Bag also helps keep plastic out of landfills.
“The Golf Lover’s Guide to England”
If Mom is champing at the bit to do some traveling, maybe she’d like to read up on golf courses in Merry Olde England so she can plan her first post-pandemic golf trip. “The Golf Lover’s Guide to England” by Michael Whitehead ($27, White Owl) is a comprehensive yet digestible field guide to some of the oldest, most famous, and best courses in the world. Mom will find everything from local 9-holers to Open Championship venues here.
Alright, there are a host of equipment recommendations I could make for Mom, too, but the best advice I can give is to get her a gift card for a clubfitting (e.g., at Club Champion). If you want to get Mom hooked on golf, she should have clubs that fit her. After all, she’s no off-the-shelf mother, is she? She deserves better than off-the-shelf clubs.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there, and I sincerely hope to see you out on the links this year!