By Sam Tremlett
We catch up with Nick Dougherty to get his thoughts on golf, Covid-19 and the Garden Golf Tour
Golf Popularity Up By 40% Since Lockdown
With the BMW PGA Championship taking place this week it would be easy to look at the tournament negatively as there will be no fans at the event. However, whilst it is difficult to acknowledge that golf may have had a slight boost from Covid, it is also true to do so.
In fact, in analysis carried out by Shot Scope, golf has seen a 40% spike in popularity since lockdown began in March, with the public taking up the sport from home and out on courses when lockdown eased.
In this weeks podcast we caught up with Nick Dougherty to discuss the boost golf has received, playing golf during lockdown, and how he has really enjoyed playing the sport with his 8-year-old son.
Additionally he has also been seeing some of the creative golf courses people have been making in their gardens. Sent by BMW, this was the UK’s first Garden Golf Tour to celebrate passionate golf fans who created their own garden golf courses during lockdown.
“The courses that fans have created are incredible,” said Dougherty.
“As well as being a great sport, many people find Golf really helps relieve stress. Covid-19 shone a light on the game and showed more people than ever how golf can help with fitness both physically and mentally, by getting us outdoors and active. The last few months have opened up the sport to new players, old and young.
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“The courses people have built in their gardens are more than just golf courses – they are ways to spend more time with family and friends, create challenges between golfing buddies, practice their short game and, more than anything, spend time outside. The BMW PGA Championship will be more popular than ever this year and I’m sure will inspire more people to transform their gardens.”
One such example of this is the course Paul created in his garden whilst on furlough, which he created for his golf mad daughter Lila.
Lila said; “The garden golf course has meant I’ve been able to practice every day, something that would have been difficult when we weren’t allowed out. Golf makes me feel incredibly happy, and my love for the game has increased during lockdown – it’s also been a great way to spend more time with my Dad!”
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A golfer for most of his life, Sam started playing the game to prove he was the best player out of his father and two brothers.
He quickly became a golf equipment expert and has always been the one family and friends come to for buying advice, and spends a lot of his time putting golf gear, apparel and shoes to the test.
He is a graduate of Swansea University where he studied History and American Studies, and he has been a part of the Golf Monthly team since February 2018. He also previously worked for World Soccer and Rugby World magazines.
A jack of all trades across print and digital formats, Sam now spends most of his time testing and looking after golf gear content for the website. He also oversees all Tour player content as well.
Unfortunately, Sam is not a member of any club at the moment but regularly gets out on the golf course to keep up the facade of having a handicap of five.
Sam is currently playing:
Driver: Titleist TS3
Fairway Wood: TaylorMade M5 (15 degrees), Nike Covert Tour 2.0 (19 degrees)
Irons (4-PW): Titleist AP2
Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 54˚, 58˚
Putter: Scotty Cameron Circa 62 #6
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