almostgolfballsThe weather is beautiful, the pros are inspiring, and it’s time to play some more golf with the girls…maybe even on a weekend getaway trip to some course you’ve never played before (we don’t have to tell anyone that it’s really for the getaway, not the golf).

So as you hit the greens, if you’re not quite confident about your game, TravelingMom has a review of a few items that might have you seeing more eagles and birdies.  From guide books to special ball scoopers, your game has got to improve with these gadgets.

The almostGOLFball

The almostGOLF ball is something you can practice with before you leave home—and you don’t have to go to a driving range to play.  This looks just like any other ball but travels only a third of the distance.  It’s very soft, so it’s safe to use anywhere (I have a feeling the kids will be stealing this out of my bag in two seconds flat!). The almostGOLFball really does let you take your game anywhere.  For more information about almostGOLF, visit www.almostgolf.com.

The Golf Genie

golfgenieThe Golf Genie™ is like the cliff notes version of golf…an expert guide you can put in your pocket so that whenever you’re in a tough spot, you can just flip to the section of the book that covers that quandary (they don’t call me Tree for nothing—it’s like my balls have a magnet in them that seems to just draw them to any tree on the course) and get help.  The Golf Genie™ can show you how to get out of that spot and also give you tips for practice so that you’re never there again.  Golf Genie is designed by top PGA professionals for on the course play and off the course preparation, and was even selected by Golf Today Magazine as the 2010 “Golf Product of the Year,” The print version of Golf Genie can be purchased on the web at www.golfgenieguide.com as well as golf pro shops and retail stores across the US.  And get this. Golf Genie can also be purchased as an iPhone application, available on Apple iTunes, or as a blackberry app starting in May, 2010. 

The Complete Golf Manual, By Steve Newell

Ok, this won’t fit in your pocket, but it’ll help your game before you hit the greens. The Complete Golf Manual (April 2010, DK Publishing, $25.00) is the ultimate self-improvement guide to playing better golf (and it’s graphics and photos are stunning!). The book offers a series of exercises to develop your technique, routines to help you think more decisively on the course, and a section on the top ten most common faults (I only have a few!), Steve Newell offers fabulous tips for all of us, from the novice to the experienced club golfer.  It covers all aspects of the game, from tee shots, iron play, pitching, and chipping, to coping with bunkers and putting.  It even includes tips on golf etiquette and advice on buying equipment.

The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Golf, Second Edition and The Pocket Idiot’s Guide to Golf Rules

OK, these are pretty self-explanatory.  You need the tips but you don’t need elaborate explanations.  The dumbed-down version (I don’t take offense to the term—life is complicated enough and I like to keep things super simple sometimes) will tell you what you need to know so that you can get through the game without taking classes for years.  Short, sweet, success.

Zone Golf

Need to get in the zone for a good game? Absolutely!  And the book called Zone Golf will get you there.  This book by Kelly Sullivan Walden teaches you how to use self-hypnosis to improve your golf game.  Go ahead and laugh, but tell me—has what you’ve done for the past I don’t know how many years been doing you any favors?  If you’re willing to open your mind to Zone Golf, you may soon find you’re capable of playing a very different game, a much-improved one, and who knows?  Learning the “zone” may even carry over into other parts of your life.  Game-changing and life-changing.  I’m in. http://kellysullivanwalden.com/zonegolf.html

From the Red Tees: Help, Hope, and Humor for the Women on the Green

Yes, it’s a long title, but if you’re a gal who plays golf, you’ll want to check out this book by Celeste Palermo. This book for women, written by a woman, is packed with need-to-know tips, basic golf etiquette, the rules of the game, and humorous stories and golf anecdotes.  Palermo admits she’s been over par and out of bounds often, but all aspiring golfers will appreciate the lessons that she’s learned first-hand as she tells you about her own frustrating (and embarrassing) experiences.

Dream On, One Hack Golfer’s Challenge to Break Par in a Year, By John Richardson

You don’t have to love golf to love this book, Dream On, One Hack Golfer’s Challenge to Break Par in a Year, By John Richardson.  It’s as much about fortitude, perseverance and determination as it is about golf.  When John Richardson told famed Scottish golfer and commentator Sam Torrance that he was determined to break par in a year, Torrance told him to “dream on”.  Thus began his quest to accomplish what many thought impossible. You see, John was a typical weekend golfer with a wife, a daughter, a full-time job.  But he somehow went from being an average 24-handicapper to breaking par (72) in one year’s time at the local golf course.  The books tells the story of what it took and how he got there. It’s funny and inspiring.  www.skyhorsepublishing.com

The Vizini

viziniSo maybe you’re not up for reading about the game and just want to play it?  We need to get you geared up.  The Vizini® will shade your eyes without giving you hat head. The visor secures to your sunglasses (or eyeglasses).  It’s very lightweight, so you barely know it’s there.  It comes in several styles and colors and can even be customized with a special company or team logo.  Cool, huh? www.vizini.com

Your Wardrobe

Not sure what color visor to get?  First you have to find the right outfit for your next round (you know the deal, if you look good, you play great!).  The 2010 Fila Golf collection combines premium and eco-friendly fabrics with moisture wicking, quick drying and antimicrobial properties.  That’s all important, sure, but they also look good, coming in solids, stripes and textures, building on the brand’s famous Viva red, White and Fila Navy combination, adding shades of Aqua, Pine, Fig and Atomic Orange for an updated, modern color palette. Atomic Orange just sounds powerful, like the swing I hope to achieve. www.filagolf.com

Or, you can try the options by Quagmire Golf, worn by both Hollywood Celebrities and golf professionals.  The Quagmire TripleBogey Shorts and Crosshand Polo are options that will have you looking great on the green. There’s also the Flyer Dress, a modern play on the classic looking dress, so it’s perfect for play or a night on the town.  www.quagmiregolf.com

And when you’re out there on the course you’re going to want to make sure you don’t burn, so you may want to check out the Sunny Sleevez.  It’s chemical-free sun protection that’s really cool.  Sunny Sleevez are patent pending lightweight 50+SPF fabric sleeves that provide instant sun protection that you never have to reapply! Sunny Sleevez are available at www.SunnySleeveZ.com.

The Golfing Caddy

It’s not only critical to keep the sun from frying your skin…it’s also important to stay hydrated.  Can’t carry a water bottle along with your bag?  Just use the Golfing Caddy.  Not the other kind of caddy—this caddy is a multi-compartment tote and beverage holder that easily clips to your golf bag. It even has a cooler sleeve, along with a pouch to hold all your other game essentials in one handy place. It even has a microfiber towel attached, and a key clip and handy wrist strap to make it extra easy.  www.thegolfingcaddy.com

The ScrambleScoop

To me, the worst part of golf (other than those silly trees that like to jump in front of my ball) is all the bending over to pick up the ball.  But now there’s the ScrambleScoop.  It’s the first-ever “drive-by” golf ball retriever. The ScrambleScoop allows any golfer to easily scoop up grounded golf balls while in a moving  cart without bending, leaning or stretching. Woo hoo!  It has a telescopic handle that you can extend and angled edges that guide the ball into the net so all you have to do is reach out, drag it along the grass and scoop you your ball. Voila! It was originally designed for golf scrambles or “best ball” games, but is picking up popularity for all golfing now. www.scramblescoop.com

Note to the reader:  These products were all sent to TravelingMom for review and then donated to a local charity for use as prizes in their golf tournament.  The reviews are the opinion of the writer.