Bocce

Bocce: Game in action

I have included a gallery of sorts for readers to look at if you want to get a better idea of what playing bocce actually looks like. I know I kind of made it hard to understand in my almost all-text post last time, but at least here are some pictures.

I may post a video of a full game of bocce of me and my friends, if you guys want it.

playing bocce
The game  can be played in a more open-ended area as well

pitching in bocceplaying bocce in sand

old timer's sports
Bocce is a perfect sport for those that are looking for a more calm environment. It gives me a break from all the intense workouts and other sports I involve myself in
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Golf

Golf

There are practically limitless reasons why one would get started with golf. For one, it is impressively easy to get into. People have started teaching their children how to play golf at like the age of 10. To add to that, the game is easily accessible to basically any age. From the mentioned 10 years old, to the retired ages, people of all kinds enjoy the game. Another reason is its complexity. Again, it is very easy to get into but not everyone will end up being that skilled. There are so many factors to the game that even years of playing won’t guarantee you will be any good. Lastly, of all the main reasons (as I’m sure there are plenty of smaller reasons to get into golf), the game is a real social game. People invite others for rounds of golf, so they can socialize while playing a fun sport. It has become almost a formal tradition of sorts, for men to invite each other to play to discuss other things.

The basics

If you are going to get into it, there are a few things you need to learn. I have listed them out in their own sub-headings so you can easily find which ones you need to address. Everyone is in their own stage.

Location

You need a solid location to get started doing anything. If you don’t have a golf course, then you can’t play golf! Easy as that.

Of course, you don’t need to spend hundreds just to join a golf club and potentially not even like it (for those that are completely new to the game). There should be options at those places, however, for complete newcomers. You should definitely ask the club directors there for help, as I am sure they will have some sort of new-player package for you. I remember my golf club had a special for beginners; they allowed us a full day on the course with a complimentary learning session, in the hopes that we would subscribe to the club. Well, it worked. I saw the value in what they were giving to me for free and ended up spending some money to join that club and gain access to that club’s courses.

Equipment

People often ask me if they need their own equipment. This post is my answer. The reason I listed “Location” first before “Equipment” was because you should check in with the place you are going to play with if they offer playing gear for you or not. There is no sense it purchasing your own gear if you are completely new, and potentially wasting that money, if the club you are already joining has stuff you could use included with its price.

With that said, there are still some things you need to consider. I would definitely come with proper golfing attire. You cannot just show up with a pair of jeans and a button down shirt. You need real gear that will help you find a range of motion that is comfortable.

I would also suggest getting your own golf balls, if anything else. This isn’t to play on the golf course per se, but just for practicing. For a review, check out this one of the Callaway Supersoft golf ball, a ball I highly recommend as it has lasted me years on the course.

A proper swing

This one is probably important, eh? You need to learn how to swing a golf club and actually hit the ball. This can be frustrating for those that are older and are hard at seeing or coordinating, but that is what makes it so fun in my opinion.

Do a little bit of research online on the basics and fundamentals of a proper swing. I have one good video on this, linked here, to get started. Then go to your golf club and ask for help to get you started. After they or you have taught yourself how to swing, all it is is practice from that point on. You don’t need to be at the course every single day, but do make the effort to keep working on your swing, with or without a golf ball.

Bocce

Bocce

I have only recently learned the game of  bocce. It was introduced to me by my longtime college friend William just last summer. I feel like I should talk about it because it has been really fun for the months I have had to spend with it, and it simply does not get the recognition it deserves. For instance, just the other day I was talking to my friend Mathew and I asked if he wanted to play some bocce. Naturally, he asked what it was, never having heard of it.

The game is played on a rectangular play area, usually grounded with grass or some other soft material. Do note that the play area is usually walled off to prevent the balls from escaping. It is nothing like golf, which features a very vast and open area to play the game in.

Anyway, to be brief, the goal is to place as many of your own balls close to the target ball, which is called the poleena. Don’t quote me on the spelling of that word, just know that different people spell it differently depending on what region you are in. You get four of your own balls while your opponent also gets four. You both take turns throwing your ball from the starting position, and at the end you analyze who is closest to the target ball.

My favorite thing about the ball sport is that you can totally mess with your friends’ shots. It isn’t just exclusive to you getting closest to the target ball. You can try to hit your opponent’s shot out of the way, which then results in their ball being further from the target, and your ball possibly being closer. It adds a ton of variety and one of the main reasons I keep playing.

If you have never heard of the game before, I urge you to do some research now. It really is fun to play and is incredibly easy to learn and set up. In fact, you don’t even need the rectangular enclosure that is typically the playing field. You can even play in your own backyard or anywhere there is grass really.