Sporting Experience: Fling Golf – What is it?
It’s not easy to invent a new sport, at least not one that finds a national or an international following. In that regard, fling golf is a standout – within a year of its inception, more than 100 golf courses started to offer fling golf, and the sport has now spread to three continents.
Fling golf is basically golf with a lacrosse stick, two sports that its inventor, Alex Van Alen, played as a kid. It is played on a regular golf course and can actually be played alongside regular golf groups, or even with them.
The fling golf stick is tipped with an L-shaped cupped head that allows the ball to be held within and then released at a particular point in the manner of lacrosse. Some experience in that game will go a long way in helping you get a hang of fling golf.
Beyond this point, the line between golf and fling golf blurs; the aim is to sink the ball into the hole in as few tries as possible.
The immense appeal of this fledgling sport can be attributed largely to the fact that it allows people of all ages to indulge with little or no training or experience. It could take you weeks to learn a tee-off swing so that you do not miss the ball completely once every few dozen tries. On the other hand, with the ball already in the cupped head when you begin your round of fling golf, there is no barrier to simply starting.
The ‘rebel’ tag associated with fling golf helps it establish a younger following. Just like what snowboarding did with skiing once, fling golf is transforming an old, established sport.
There is no doubt that golf is associated generally with older men whiling their weekends or retirements away. Combining golf’s benign and staid play with the rapid movements, bursts of energy and accessories of a sport like lacrosse makes the game appealing to a whole new demographic. The majority of fling sport players are teens and young adults who would otherwise never set foot on a golf green.
There is also considerably less investment required – you can play all the fling golf you like with a single fling golf stick – no need for a bag of clubs.
As the game’s popularity spreads, golf courses around the nation and across the world are jumping onto the fling golf bandwagon. From Alaska to Ireland and from New York to New Zealand, there are currently hundreds of greens where you can try your hand at flinging a golf ball. Your next vacation just might be at a resort where you pick it up yourself.