I’ve grown up playing golf in Texas. The primary time I play tends to be in the summer, I hate playing golf in the cold, so instead, I usually get the Texas heat. I sometimes tee it up when the temperature is well over 100 degrees! It's hot as anything out there; even worse, humidity can often be up pretty high. Because of this, I have gained some tips and tricks that I use when I do have to play when it is as hot as it gets. Now, most of the tips here are on preparing to play in the heat, not just doing extra things while you play.
This is the crucial part of playing when it's hotter than the devil’s taint. Prepare to sweat your butt off; prepare for the heat. Drink a ton of water! The best way to get ready for a hot round is to be incredibly hydrated; drinking plenty of water helps the most. It will make it feel cooler outside if you are hydrated and prepared before playing. Drinking water while you play will only help so much, so instead, we focus on the preparation and drink plenty of water the nights before your round. I mix in Gatorades before and after the round, but I always drink a ton of water before the round. Once you are in the round, focus on drinking water. If you drink too much Gatorade during your round, your blood sugar can fluctuate, and you will have more energy to hit sometimes when you are on a high, but the crash changes your game. Having ups and downs with blood sugar may not seem like an issue to you, but it creates a lot of inconsistencies in your game. So in a really important round, focus on drinking water and eating something that keeps you pretty level, even keel.
You need to ensure you have plenty of sunscreen and a couple of good towels that you like to use. I always keep a very wet towel and a completely dry clean towel in my bag; I will discuss their use later.
I will stress one more time that when you plan to play a round while it is over 95 degrees out, the key is water consumption the day before. Drink an excessive amount of water. It will keep you alive and well and help you not feel the heat as much.
Once you arrive at the course, park in the shade, even if it means you walk further to get to your cart; when you leave, worn down, it will be beneficial. If shade is sparse, find a spot that may not be in the shade at that second, but it will be with an hour left in the round. That way, when you come back, it is covered. You want to be shaded at the end of the round, not so much beginning.
Once you have parked, pull your bag out, and go ahead and apply some sunscreen, put on your golf shoes, and you are ready to go. Make sure you have plenty of fluids if the course does not have a lot of water on it; this is your chance to be prepared. It's a long walk back to the club house if you run entirely out of water, and it is way better to have hot water than no water. Keep a bottle or two in your golf bag, ready to go!
Now the next tip will depend on if you have a cart with a cooler, bullseye, easy money, and no worries about the heat. Take a towel and put it in the cooler with ice water.
When it is hot as all get out, your hands get sweaty; it is going to happen, don’t worry about it. Now I don’t wear a glove. Growing up, I used gloves but went through them extremely fast, hitting tons of balls every day. My dad had never worn a glove, so eventually, he told me to start buying them with my own money or don’t use them. He was tired of me charging glove after glove to his account. So right there, I decided not to wear a glove. Living in Texas and not wearing a glove, I figured out that you need to pour water on the first instead of just trying to dry your hands with a towel. If you pour water or use a water towel, potentially the cold ice towel you have chilling in your cooler, then dry your hands off with your other towel, and your hands will be back to perfectly dry! This is the best way to keep your hands dry and on the club!
On The Course
The number one thing on the course is obviously to drink more water! You just have to keep drinking water, Gatorade, or whatever you are drinking to hydrate up, but it gets miserable out there sometimes!
You next want to park your cart in the shade whenever possible, even if it adds an extra 15 to 20 steps; when you return to your cart, you will be glad you did. The cart stays cooler, the leather seats aren’t blazing hot, your drinks stay colder, and the air around it is refreshing when you sit down. I can’t explain the science behind it, but you feel way way way better after the round this way!
The main gist of this entire piece is you need to prepare for a hot round by drinking plenty of water beforehand and during. Find shade and park in it; use it to recharge a little. Then when you finish, a cold beer is always recommended!