195 Golf Quotes – Amusing and Inspiring

Golf Quotations

I’ll start with a quote from my favorite golfer:

Golf is not about the quality of your good shots, it is about the quality of your bad shots

Sir Nick Faldo

Legends of the Game

Bobby Jones

Bobby Jones golf quotes

“The secret of golf is to turn three shots into two.”

“If I had ever been set down in any one place and told I was to play there, and nowhere else, for the rest of my life, I should have chosen the Old Course at St. Andrews.”

“Competitive golf is played mainly on a five-and-a-half-inch course… the space between your ears.”

“I get as much fun as the next man from whaling the ball as hard as I can and catching it squarely on the button. But from sad experience I learned not to try this in a round that meant anything.”

“The toughest opponent of all is Old Man Par. He’s a patient soul who never shoots a birdie and never incurs a bogey. And if you would travel the long road with him, you must be patient, too.”

“The best exercise for golfers is golfing.”

“Golf is a game that is played on a five-inch course”

“Golf is the closest game to the game we call life. You get bad breaks from good shots; you get good breaks from bad shots – but you have to play the ball where it lies.”

“Golf is like eating peanuts. You can play too much or play too little.”

“The difference between a sand trap and water hazard is the difference between a car crash and an airplane crash. You have a chance of recovering from a car crash.”

“Golf is assuredly a mystifying game. It would seem that if a person has hit a golf ball correctly a thousand times, he should be able to duplicate the performance at will. But such is certainly not the case.”

“You swing your best when you have the fewest things to think about.”

“No-one will ever have golf under his thumb. No round ever will be so good it could not have been better. Perhaps this is why golf is the greatest of games. You are not playing a human adversary; you a playing a game. You are playing old man par.”

“The moment the average golfer attempts to play from long grass or a bunker or from a difficult lie of any kind, he becomes a digger instead of a swinger.”

“Golf is the only game I know of that actually becomes harder the longer you play it.”

“Nobody ever swung a club too slowly.”

“Many shots are spoiled at the last instant by efforts to add a few more yards.”

“A leading difficulty with the average player is that he totally misunderstands what is meant by concentration. He may think he is concentrating hard when he is merely worrying.”

“It is nevertheless a game of considerable passion, either of the explosive type, or that which burns inwardly and sears the soul.”

“One reason golf is such an exasperating game is that a thing we learned is so easily forgotten, and we find ourselves struggling year after year with faults we had discovered and corrected time and again.”

“You might as well praise a man for not robbing a bank as to praise him for playing by the rules.”

“In order to win, you must play your best golf when you need it most, and play your sloppy stuff when you can afford it. I shall not attempt to explain how you achieve this happy timing.”

“No one ever swung too slowly.”

“Some people think they are concentrating when they’re merely worrying.”

“Nobody ever wins the National Open. Somebody loses it.”

“It is nothing new or original to say that golf is played one stroke at a time. But it took me many years to realize it.”

“I never learned anything from a match that I won.”

“I always like to see a person stand up to a golf ball as though he were perfectly at home in its presence.”

“Rhythm and timing are the two things which we all must have, yet no one knows how to teach either.”

“Golf is recognized as one of the more difficult games to play or teach. One reason for this is that each person necessarily plays by feel, and a feel is almost impossible to describe.”

Walter Hagen

Walter Hagan golf quotes

“You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way.“

“You don’t have the game you played last year or last week. You only have today’s game. It may be far from your best, but that’s all you’ve got. Harden your heart and make the best of it.“

“I never played a perfect 18 holes. There is no such thing. I expect to make at least seven mistakes a round. Therefore, when I make a bad shot, I don’t worry about it. It is just one of the seven.“

“No one remembers who came in second.“

“Every golfer can expect to have four bad shots in a round and when you do, just put them out of your mind. This, of course is hard to do when you’ve had them and you’re not even off the first tee.“

“If you worry about the ones you missed, you are going to keep missing them.“

“I would rather be of clear mind and decision with the wrong club than with an unclear mind and the right club.“

“When I have a match to play, I begin to relax as soon as I wake up. Everything I do, I do slow and easy. That goes for stroking the razor, getting dressed, and eating my breakfast. I’m practically in slow motion. By the time I’m ready to tee off, I’m so used to taking my time that it’s impossible to hurry my swing.“

“I never wanted to be a millionaire. I just wanted to live like one.“

“It takes six years to make a golfer: three to learn the game, then another three to unlearn all you have learned in the first three years. You might be a golfer when you arrive at that stage, but more likely you are just starting.“

“My dear, did you ever stop to think what a wonderful bunker you would make?“

“Which one of you is going to be runner-up?“

“Give me a man with big hands and big feet and no brains and I’ll make a golfer out of him.“

“He may have gone to bed three hours ago, but he knows who he is playing. You can rest assured that he hasn’t slept a wink.“

“What a shame to waste those great shots on the practice tee.“

“Why waste good shots in practice when you might need them in a match?“

“Trouble shots are surprisingly easy if you activate your imagination. You simply must be able to imagine exactly what flight the ball will take before you can play any shot well.“

“Don’t forget to stop and smell the roses.“

“It is the addition of strangeness to beauty that constitutes the romantic character in art.“

“Here Eddie, hold the flag while I putt out.“

“That’s the easiest 69 I ever made.“

“Whatever happens on the golf course is OK, because if I put the ball in trouble I know that I have the skills to get it out of trouble and back into play.“

“Short putts are missed because it is not physically possible to make the little ball travel over uncertain ground for three or four feet with any degree of regularity.“

“Miss a putt for $2,000? Not likely!“

Jack Nicklaus

Jack Nicklaus Golf quotes

“Learn the fundamentals of the game and stick to them. Band-Aid remedies never last.”

“Success depends almost entirely on how effectively you learn to manage the game’s two ultimate adversaries: the course and yourself.”

“Concentration is a fine antidote to anxiety.”

“Golf is a better game played downhill.”

“People only do their best at things they truly enjoy”

“If I had only one more round to play, I would choose to play it at Pebble Beach. I’ve loved this course from the first time I saw it. It’s possibly the best in the world.”

“Scoring comes from being able to preserve what you’ve got and play your smart shots when you need to play them and not do stupid things and take advantage of things when have you them.”

“The worse you’re performing, the more you must work mentally and emotionally. The greatest and toughest art in golf is “playing badly well.” All the true greats have been masters at it.”

“When you lip out several putts in a row, you should never think that means that you’re putting well. When you’re putting well, the only question is what part of the hole it’s going to fall in, not if it’s going in.”

“Focus on remedies, not faults.”

“He’s going to be around a long, long time if his body holds up. That’s always a concern with a lot of players because of how much they play. A lot of guys can’t handle it. But it looks like he can.”

“I’ve had a lot of majors where I didn’t play well until the last round. Keep yourself in contention; that’s the name of the game. I usually ended up shooting a good round and all of a sudden, somehow, I won.”

“Golf is not, and never has been, a fair game.”

“Keeping the head still is golf’s one universal, unarguable fundamental.”

“Resolve never to quit, never to give up, no matter what the situation.”

“Complacency is a continuous struggle that we all have to fight.”

“When I want a long ball, I spin my hips faster.”

“Achievement is largely the product of steadily raising one’s level of aspiration and expectation.”

“The longer you play, the better chance the better player has of winning.”

“Don’t be too proud to take lessons. I’m not.”

“I’m a firm believer that in the theory that people only do their best at things they truly enjoy. It is difficult to excel at something you don’t enjoy.”

“It’s great to win, but it’s also great fun just to be in the thick of any truly well and hard-fought contest against opponents you respect, whatever the outcome.”

“The game is meant to be fun.”

“There is no room in your mind for negative thoughts.”

“A perfectly straight shot with a big club is a fluke.”

“Did you know there’s probably more golf played in Iceland than most places in the world? They play 24 hours a day in the summertime and the northern part is warmer than the southern part.”

“Golf is game of respect and sportsmanship; we have to respect its traditions and its rules.”

“I never missed a putt in my mind.”

“Golf is a game of precision, not strength.”

“It takes hundreds of good golf shots to gain confidence, but only one bad one to lose it.”

“Nobody ever remembers who finished second at anything.”

“The best way to cope with trouble is to stay out of it as much as possible.”

“There is no room in your mind for negative thoughts. The busier you keep yourself with the particulars of shot assessment and execution, the less chance your mind has to dwell on the emotional. This is sheer intensity.”

“A kid grows up a lot faster on the golf course. Golf teaches you how to behave.”

“Confidence is the most important single factor in this game, and no matter how great your natural talent, there is only one way to obtain and sustain it: work.”

“I never hit a shot, not even in practice, without having a very sharp, in-focus picture of it in my head.”

“If there is one thing I have learned during my years as a professional, it is that the only thing constant about golf is its inconstancy.”

“My ability to concentrate and work toward that goal has been my greatest asset.”

“I don’t know if I’ll ever do it again or not, but frankly, I don’t really care.”

Arnold Palmer

Arnold Palmer Golf quotes

“This is great for golf, the Tri-State PGA and amateur golfers,”

“Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated; it satisfies the soul and frustrates the intellect. It is at the same time rewarding and maddening – and it is without a doubt the greatest game mankind has ever invented.”

“Always make a total effort, even when the odds are against you.”

“I have a tip that can take 5 strokes off anyone’s golf game. It’s called an eraser.”

“Winning isn’t everything, but wanting it is.”

“It’s a funny thing, the more I practice the luckier I get”

“You must play boldly to win.”

“What do I mean by concentration? I mean focusing totally on the business at hand and commanding your body to do exactly what you want it to do.”

“Concentration, Confidence, Competitive urge, Capacity for enjoyment.”

“Putting is like wisdom – partly a natural gift and partly the accumulation of experience.”

“It is not a dreamlike state, but the somehow insulated state, that a great musician achieves in a great performance. He’s aware of where he is and what he’s doing, but his mind is on the playing of the instrument with an internal sense of rightness — it is not merely mechanical, it is not only spiritual; it is something of both, on a different plane and a more remote one.”

“I’m not objectionable to it. In the beginning, we tried to do some extra stuff to make it attractive to the players, but now the indication is the guys want to come in on Tuesday night and play Wednesday in the pro-am as their practice round.”

“What other people may find in poetry or art museums, I find in the flight of a good drive.”

“I never rooted against an opponent, but I never rooted for him either.”

“Success in golf depends less on strength of body than upon strength of mind and character.”

“I’ve always made a total effort, even when the odds seemed entirely against me. I never quit trying; I never felt that I didn’t have a chance to win.”

“The most rewarding things you do in life are often the ones that look like they cannot be done.”

“What other people may find in poetry, I find in the flight of a good drive.”

“Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated.”

“I never quit trying. I never felt that I didn’t have a chance to win.”

Gary Player

Gary player golf quotes

“The more I work and practice, the luckier I seem to get.”

“To succeed in life one must have determination and must be prepared to suffer during the process. If one isn’t prepared to suffer during adversities, I don’t really see how he can be successful.“

“It’s a marriage. If I had to choose between my wife and my putter, well, I’d miss her.“

“Simply by making the effort to start something, you will be miles ahead of almost everyone else.“

“A strong mind is one of the key components that separates the great from the good.“

“We create success or failure on the course primarily by our thoughts.“

“The harder you work, the luckier you get.“

“Enjoy the game. Happy golf is good golf.“

“I am tired of all these golfers who are happy with second place. The only one who will like you if you come in second place is your wife and your dog. And that is only if you have a good wife and a good dog.“

“Golf is a puzzle without an answer. I’ve played the game for 40 years and I still haven’t the slightest idea how to play.“

“If you think your hands are more important in your golf swing than your legs, try walking a hole on your hands.“

“The player who expects a lesson to ‘take’ without subsequent practice just isn’t being honest with himself or fair to his professional.“

“I got so strong I felt like a giant…..When I stood on the tee with Arnold and Jack, I was tiny compared to them. But I never believed they were bigger than me. So the mind is so fascinating.“

“If you are going to keep company with me, don’t embarrass me.“

“If there’s a golf course in heaven, I hope it’s like Augusta National. I just don’t want an early tee time.“

“You must work very hard to become a natural golfer.“

“First, educate yourself about what a vegan diet entails and why it is beneficial to your health. You need to understand and embrace the philosophy or you will not be able to make such a drastic dietary change. Secondly, make the change over time. Don’t try and “go cold turkey”; you will shock your system and you will develop cravings that you may not be able to fight off. If you take your time and let your body adjust you will be eating a completely different diet before you realize it.“

“Golf asks something of a man. It makes one loathe mediocrity. It seems to say, “If you are going to keep company with me, don’t embarrass me.“

“That loss was to breed an independence, a toughness of spirit, and an awareness of adversity and discipline that have never left me,.“

“The ideal build for a golfer would be strong hands, big forearms, thin neck, big thighs and a flat chest. He’d look like Popeye.“

“Wind is part of the British Open. It is an examination and it took me a long time to pass the examination. Eighty per cent of the fellows out there have not passed the test.“

“There is absolutely nothing humorous at the Masters. Here, small dogs do not bark and babies do not cry.“

“Perhaps the most important thing I can tell you about equipment is to experiment and keep an open mind.“

The “I rarely eat red meat and only occasionally eat fish. Plant based foods are my main source of nutrition along with nuts, fruits, brown breads and grains.“

Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods golf quotes

“Money and fame made me believe I was entitled. I was wrong and foolish.”

“Winning is not always the barometer of getting better.”

“One of the things that my parents have taught me is never listen to other people’s expectations. You should live your own life and live up to your own expectations, and those are the only things I really care about it.”

“My main focus is on my game.”

“I get to play golf for a living. What more can you ask for – getting paid for doing what you love.”

“I’ve always known where I wanted to go in life.”

“I had to take baby steps all year.”

“I’m trying as hard as I can, and sometimes things don’t go your way, and that’s the way things go.”

“No matter how good you get you can always get better and that’s the exciting part.”

“The only thing you can do is take a learning experience from it, positives and negatives, and apply them to the future. What did you do right, what did you do wrong, and I did a lot of things right this week.”

“I don’t think golf has ever been any pressure as far as having to succeed.”

“I just didn’t start off very well and it was a long day. All day I was grinding, but I stayed as patient as possible and I have three more days to get back into it. I will go home, relax and put this day behind me.”

“That’s why I’ve busted my butt on the range for hours on end and made changes to get to this point where I’m able to compete at the highest level in major championships. That’s where you want to be.”

“I think it’s an honor to be a role model to one person or maybe more than that. If you are given a chance to be a role model, I think you should always take it because you can influence a person’s life in a positive light, and that’s what I want to do. That’s what it’s all about.”

“You know, all the nay-sayers said that I was doing the wrong things. They can understand why now I made those changes.”

“‘You can play from the wrong position for a long time with good hands, but eventually it’s going to catch up with you.”

“My dad has always taught me these words: care and share. That’s why we put on clinics. The only thing I can do is try to give back. If it works, it works.”

“You’ve got to stay patient, stay in the moment, keep grinding… You never know what can happen. And it turned out well.”

“I know that balance that I need to have in my life.”

“My failures have made me look at myself in a way I’ve never wanted to before.”

“As a child, the family that I had and the love I had from my two parents allowed me to go ahead and be more aggressive, to search and to take risks knowing that, if I failed, I could always come home to a family of love and support.”

“It’s been a lot of fun to see some fruits of my hard labour.”

“As you all know, I’m kind of a perfectionist.”

“I’m all or nothing.”

“The joy I get from winning a major championship doesn’t even compare to the feeling I get when a kid writes a letter saying: ‘Thank you so much. You have changed my life.’”

“I like to pick my causes and not be forced into doing something.”

Quotable Golfers

“Golf is an awkward set of bodily contortions designed to produce a graceful result.”

Tommy Armour

“Golf is a fascinating game. It has taken me nearly 40 years to discover that I can’t play it.”

Ted Ray

“If a lot of people gripped a knife and fork the way they do a golf club, they’d starve to death.”

Sam Snead

“Be decisive. A wrong decision is generally less disastrous than indecision.”

Bernhard Langer

“If you’re caught on a golf course during a storm and are afraid of lightning, hold up a 1-iron. Not even God can hit a 1-iron.”

Lee Trevino

“Don’t play too much golf. Two rounds a day are plenty.”

Harry Vardon

“Golf’s three ugliest words: Still your shot.”

Dave Marr

“A great shot is when you pull it off. A smart shot is when you don’t have the guts to try it.”

Phil Mickelson

“Happiness is a long walk with a putter.”

Greg Norman

Famous Non Golfers


“Golf combines two favorite American pastimes: taking long walks and hitting things with a stick.”


“The only time my prayers are never answered is on the golf course.”

Billy Graham

“Golf can best be defined as an endless series of tragedies obscured by the occasional miracle.”


“Golf gives you an insight into human nature, your own as well as your opponent’s.”

Grantland Rice

“Golf… is the infallible test. The man who can go into a patch of rough alone, with the knowledge that only God is watching him, and play his ball where it lies, is the man who will serve you faithfully and well.”

P.G. Wodehouse

“The proper score for a businessman golfer is 90. If he is better than that he is neglecting his business. If he’s worse, he’s neglecting his golf.” 

St Andrews Rotary Club Member

“If you think it’s hard to meet new people, try picking up the wrong golf ball.”

Jack Lemmon

“I’ll shoot my age if I have to live to be 105.”

Bob Hope

“Half of golf is fun; the other half is putting.”

Peter Dobereiner

“I would like to deny all allegations by Bob Hope that during my last game of golf, I hit an eagle, a birdie, an elk and a moose.”

President Gerald Ford

“Golf is a game whose aim is to hit a very small ball into an even smaller hole, with weapons singularly ill-designed for the purpose.”

Winston Churchill

“The golf swing is like a suitcase into which we are trying to pack one too many things.”

John Updike

“Golf is about how well you accept, respond to, and score with your misses much more so than it is a game of your perfect shots.” 

Dr Bob Rotella

“I regard golf as an expensive way of playing marbles.”

G.K. Chesterton

Golf is so popular simply because it is the best game in the world at which to be bad.


“Golf is a day spent in a round of strenuous idleness.”

William Wordsworth

“If profanity had an influence on the flight of the ball, the game of golf would be played far better than it is.”

Horace G. Hutchinson

“Give me golf clubs, fresh air, and a beautiful partner, and you can keep the clubs and the fresh air.”

Jack Benny

“Golf, like measles, should be caught young.”


“If you really want to get better at golf, go back and take it up at a much earlier age.”

Thomas Mulligan

“If you drink, don’t drive. Don’t even putt.”

Dean Martin

“I’m the best. I just haven’t played yet.” 

Muhammed Ali

“It is good sportsmanship not to pick up lost balls while they are still rolling.”

Mark Twain

“If you watch a game, it’s fun. If you play it, it’s recreation. If you work at it, it’s golf.”

Bob Hope

Beginners Guides:

Etiquette – What is that?

Glossary – Terms you need to know

Beginners Guide to Golf Equipment

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