With Golf Month 2017 fast approaching, we caught up with long-time golfer and blossoming media personality Bree Laughlin to learn how she was bitten by the golf bug and how she'll be sharing the golf bug this October…
How did you catch the golf bug? Do you remember when you first got bitten by the golf bug?
Bree: I caught the golf bug through my family. My dad and older brother both played religiously so I decided to follow suit. Every (and I mean every) night after school Dad would pick us up and take us out to the Kerang Golf Club to hit balls, play holes or work on our short game. There were plenty of fights between my brother and I but I think that made it all the more entertaining!
My first memory of the golf bug was going to junior golf on a Sunday morning, bright and early, which my Dad use to teach. He cut down an 8 iron for me and I use to wander around watching all the ‘big kids’ learn while I was almost bursting to join in! I was a bit of a pest I think but I did help them pick up the balls which made up for it.
Why do you love the game?
B: There are so many things to love about the game but I think the positive effect it has on my mental health would be one of the most important for me. I find a great deal of peace wandering through nature chasing that little white ball (even if things are not going my way!) and you really do feel a sense of achievement after a round. If I don’t play I start to go a little mad… that’s when you know you really have the bug!
Other things I love are; that you can share a game of golf with anyone at any age, there are so many intricacies to the game for you to work on so it's challenging and no one golf course you play is ever the same.
How are you planning on sharing the golf bug during Golf Month?
B: I really enjoy going to the range with my girlfriends that don’t play all that much golf. It’s so exciting watching them get such a thrill when they hit a good shot! Growing up golf wasn’t exactly the coolest sport to play so I love now that I can share it with my closest friends… lots of range time coming up in Golf Month, look out girls!
Why do you encourage others to play golf (or golf related activities)?
B: Golf is great for you! I often have people tell me that ‘golf’s not a sport’. You only have to look at the guys on the US tour to see that golf is very much a sport, a sport that has seen a great deal of change in recent years, and professional golfers are fully fledged elite athletes.
Not only is golf great for your health but it’s also a whole lot of fun! I have so many funny stories from golf and they are memories I will treasure forever.
One kick I really get out of the game which I mentioned earlier is the sense of achievement at the end of a round. There is nothing like that feeling of a hot shower when you have been playing on a cold day, it’s just incredibly satisfying and centring.
What is your favourite golfing memory?
B: Goodness – there are so many! Playing for Australia in Fiji when I was a junior was certainly a highlight and having a hole-in-one is definitely up there. The moments that I shared with my family over the years and all the golf balls I feel like I ate for breakfast! But being part of the Commonwealth Golf Club Pennant team I think was the gift that kept on giving. I have so many fond memories of my time playing in that team that there isn’t enough space to recount them on this page.