So your phone is filled with golf-related apps, April is your favorite month of the year, you obsessively research the latest electric golf caddy and you own way too many favorite golf balls. But if you’ve ever missed an important event to spend a day on the golf course, you might be addicted to golf. Signs that you’re addicted Most golfers brag about the best round of golf they ever played, the best shot they had or the fastest round. Maybe the conditions of the game what made it tricky, high wind or freak blizzard conditions, and you’re proud that you made it through. Some golfers have lucky gloves, shoes, shirts, whatever they feel has affected their game in the past. The science of addiction Studies have shown that addictive personalities may be more drawn to the game of golf. Intermittent reinforcement, the same power behind gambling, is what makes it happen. Most golfers hit only a couple of great shots during every round of golf, but the thrill of those shots is what keeps them coming back for more. It’s the anticipation of the next great shot that can get golfers through many rounds of bad golf. Shooting a great score in golf is the equivalent to a powerful surge of endorphins in the brain. Another aspect of golf addition, that varies from gambling addiction, is the drive to be successful. Skills in golf are quite important, and not left up to chance, such as a great roll of dice or a lucky card. Addicted golfers spend most time not golfing, practicing for their next round of golf, whether it’s practicing your swing mid-conversation, visualizing the course during a meeting or talking technique at the water cooler. If you’re hitting the driving range to improve, when you really should be taking care of other things, it’s a sign. A healthy addiction As far as addictions go, you’ll probably be safe with golf. The side effects of being addicted to golf are far less harmful than other common addictions. At least you’re getting outside, and getting some exercise. Try to maintain a golf and life balance. While the sport may be important to you, chances are there are other things in your life that are just as important if not more; work, family, friends. So if you’ve tried time and time again to introduce loved ones to the wonderful game of golf, and they’re still not interested, let it go. You can go play some other time. It’s their loss for not understanding the greatness of the game.
July 28, 2016 — Natalie Montoya

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