Golf in Japan

POSTED BY DANNY CHOO On Tue 2011/12/13 10:40 JST in Japan

Photo of a netted golf practice ground discovered in yet another uncharted evening after-dinner walk.

Golf is a popular and yet expensive sport to play in Japan - I'm guessing that its due to popular demand that one has to pay a bladder and a spleen to get membership to a golf club. Folks here are so keen on the sport that you often see them practicing in public.

Meiji Golf is a site dedicated to the buying and selling of golf club memberships. They list a price of 47000000 yen (about 602,973 USD ) to be a member of the Koganei Country golf club.

Folks who have just laughed at the piffling 65000000 yen should check the requirements before laughing - no women or foreigners allowed - only Japanese males over the age of 35.

Fortunately, there exists a way for folks who want to keep hold of their spleen by going to a local golf practice ground - known as ゴルフ練習場 (Gorufu Renshu-jyo) and also commonly called 打ちっぱなし (Uchippanashi).

These golf practice grounds are usually small in size and are usually surrounded by a huuuge net. An example of one below.

Folks come to these golf practice grounds for many a reason - some play for leisure, some practice for the game on the weekend at a real course and some play for stress relief - prolly pretending to whack their evil boss in the face.

Notice the small basket of golf balls.

The balls can be purchased at this machine.

Balls fall out of this slot into the basket - and if the basket is not in place then they go all over the place.

A peek through the window in the machine to see more balls...

...which travel through the pipe into the machine.

The ground towards the back is sloped and most balls eventually roll into a canal type thing where they then roll off somewhere ending up going through that pipe back into the machine.

I heard that these sort of netted golf practice grounds can be found in Taiwan and China - they be available in your neck of the woods too?

And here is the price list.
-40 balls for 630 yen.
-Booklet of tickets costing 6300 yen but it does not say how many.
-315 yen for a loan of 1 club.
-210 yen to get in.

I'm lousy at ball games - football, baseball or whatever. I was good at a certain ball game when I was younger which involved dolphins though.
Ah, and I'm good at Mario BB on the NDS - awesome game. I guess one of the reasons why many CEO's (that I know) like golf is because its like running a business. The winds are like the external forces affecting a business that you have no control over - inflation, new consumer trends and so on.
Getting the ball into the hole with as little shots as possible is like calculating costs - reaching a goal with as less cost as possible - requiring skill, know how, and practice.
And getting the hole-in-one is like taking on another huge business challenge. A CEO thrives off the challenge and rewards of running the business and getting a hole in one yields great satisfaction.

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