Soccer enthusiasts expand their game with foot golf

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Soccer enthusiasts expand their game with foot golf

By John Oldani

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Have you ever wanted to enjoy the game of golf, but just cannot seem to avoid sand traps, water hazards, and shanked shots?  Well, now is your chance to put some different skills to the test with a soccer ball – by playing foot golf.

Foot golf is a new phenomenon that allows you to put all of your knowledge and desire to play golf to the test in a different way – with your feet.  Take the rudimentary rules of golf; swap your five iron for a size five soccer ball, then put on some soccer shoes and you are ready to play.

Foot golf blends the relaxation and the strategy of golf with the beauty and appeal of soccer. It is difficult to find pick-up soccer games because soccer requires several players, but mixing golf and soccer creates a game for the individual. Of course foot golf can be played with a group as well, but having the ability to practice your shot with a soccer ball, while focusing on a predetermined objective through golf, is a soccer player’s dream. 

Senior Sai Myint and sophomore Dakota Gordon are Oakland’s biggest advocates for foot golf. 

“We want people to know about the sport so that we can bring it to Oakland or a local course for people to enjoy,” Gordon said.  

It is currently played on 76 golf courses in the United States, mostly on the west coast. 

“Two foot golf holes fit into one regular golf hole,” Myint said. “The holes are shorter than regular golf because it would be hard to kick a ball 400 yards.”

Foot golf applies all the basic rules of golf and shifts the focus to a smaller course, with 21-inch holes, a soccer ball, and shoes that will not beat up the course.

“The mannerisms and etiquette are obeyed, just like regular golf,” Myint said.

In order to play foot golf, a golf course must confirm that it are interested in the new sport, and contact the American Foot Golf League to become accredited.  The AFGL’s website, www.footgolf.net, provides information on how a course can obtain the necessary equipment for the sport.

A 21-inch hole must be dug in the ground allowing for the soccer ball to fit just like a golf ball would in a regular hole.  The hole is placed away from the golf green and in the rough, so that it does not interfere with regular golfers or mess up the course fairways and greens.

Having foot golf at a golf course can bring in a younger crowd and provide new ways for students, athletes, and anyone interested to have a good time.  The interest in the sport is growing nationwide with new courses appearing monthly on the AFGL’s website.

“Overall, foot golf is appealing to a wide variety of people,” said Myint. “It’s cheap to play, and it’s a fun and unique way to have a good time outdoors.”

If interested in foot golf and starting a club, email Sai Myint at [email protected] or Dakota Gordon at [email protected]