A Different Skins game
This year over 1,000,000 Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer. One in five will develop skin cancer in their lifetime. Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. As a golfer, you may have a higher possibility of becoming one of those statistics.
Since golfers spend an extensive amount of time in the sun, they are at a greater risk of developing skin cancer than the general population. Whether you live in an area where you are just getting ready to start your golf season or if you live in a climate where you are fortunate enough to be able to play golf year round, you have a greater risk of developing skin cancer than your non-golfing friends.
If you have a junior golfer in your family, employing good sun protection procedures is crucial. Five or more severe sunburns can double your risk of developing skin cancer. You should know that most people receive 50 to 80% of their lifetime sun exposure by the time they turn 18 years old. Junior golfers clearly get more sun exposure than their non-golf playing peers. Unfortunately with youth, comes the illusion of being Teflon coated. So if your child is playing golf, it is important for you to deliver the message of sun protection and to make sure they are following good sun protection procedures.
So what can you do to reduce your risk? Sun protection is a lot like the game of golf. Both are built on a foundation of personal responsibility. Whether you are a junior golfer, weekend warrior, or golf professional, there are things that you can do to protect yourself and reduce that risk.
Absolutely use a sunscreen or sunblock. A good sunscreen is one of the first lines of defense in sun protection. It is important to use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 and be sure to use one that protects from both UVA and UVB rays. The label should state that it offers UVA and UVB protection or Broad Spectrum coverage.
Apply sunscreen and sun block 20 to 30 minutes before going into the sunlight and be sure to cover your ears, lips and scalp. If you are also using a bug repellent, apply the sunscreen first and wait before using the bug repellent.
One of the biggest misconceptions about sunscreen is that you can put it on in the morning and it will last all day long. Most sunscreens only last for two to three hours and that can be even less depending on climate, perspiration and activities. That is why we say Dont BurnReapply at the turn. If golfers would heed that advice, they would go a long way to protecting their skin.
Clothing plays a critical role in sun protection as well. Golfers seem very comfortable wearing long pants on the course but few wear long sleeves. New materials not only include a UPF rating (sort of an SPF rating for clothes) but also are very lightweight and comfortable for wearing long sleeves even in warm weather. Since many skin cancers appear on the ears, it is important to wear a hat with a wide brim. A good pair of UV protective sunglasses will help protect not only your eyes but also the area around your eyes.
Seek shade wherever you can. In the golf cart, under a tree and remember your umbrella is not just for rain; it can provide shade and newer umbrellas are made of fabrics that provide UV protection. Most pushcarts have an attachment to hold an umbrella and this is an ideal sun protection tool for junior golfers and adults. If you are a parent watching your child participate in a tournament, bring an umbrella out on the course for you as well.
If possible, avoid the sun when it is the strongest, which is from 10 am to 4pm. Of course as golfers this is not always possible so if you are going to be out in the sun during these hours, you need to be extra careful.
See a Dermatologist once a year. While skin cancer is the most prolific type of cancer it is also the most curable. Early detection is the key. Do a self exam on a regular basis and go to the Dermatologist sooner than once a year if you see a mole or lesion that was not there the last time you checked or if you see one that is growing, changing shape, crusting or starts to bleed.
We often hear that golf is a great game and one of the few sports that you can enjoy well into your 70s and even 80s. With a little bit of sun protection education and strategy, you can increase your likelihood of doing that. If you would like to learn more about sun protection, skin cancer and golf, go to www.sunsafetee.org.
Mark Wishner is the Founder and President of The Sun SafeTee Program (a non-profit organization). Mark created the Sun SafeTee Program based upon his own experience with skin cancer as well as his love for golf. In conjunction with Dermatologists, Dr. Richard Fitzpatrick and Dr. Curt Littler (son of U.S. Open Champion Gene Littler), The Sun SafeTee Program was developed to teach the golf community sun protection strategies and to provide the opportunity for the early detection of skin cancer. The goal of the Sun SafeTee Program is to help golfers enjoy a lifetime of healthy golf. Mark can be reached at email@example.com
EDITORS NOTE: Golf Fitness Magazine is the only national consumer publication dedicated to golf-specific fitness, mental focus, and improving ability, performance and health among all golfers. Our priority is to maximize your potential, lower your scores, reduce your risk of injury, and extend your golfing years. Each issue has departments dedicated to men, women, seniors, and juniors along with tips, advice and simple exercise routines from GFMs team of experts. If you want to improve your golf game, and hit the ball farther, click here for special offers on a subscription so you can have all this and more in-depth advice delivered right to you! Get cutting edge fitness & mental tips sent to your inbox each month with our FREE golf performance eNewsletter, Shape Your Game. To contact our Senior Editor, Publisher or Online Editor with questions or comments, please visit our web site golffitnessmagazine.com for more information.
Kelly beats Monty with two-shot swing on final hole
KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii – Jerry Kelly made an 18-foot birdie putt on the final hole, Colin Montgomerie missed a 6-footer for par and Kelly turned a one-shot deficit into a victory Saturday in the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.
After Kelly drove it well right into lava rocks on the par-4 16th, leading to bogey and giving Montgomerie the lead, Montgomerie made a mistake with his tee shot on the last, finding a fairway bunker. Montgomerie's approach went over the green and after Kelly converted his birdie, the 54-year-old Scot jammed his par putt well past the hole.
It was the third win on the over-50 tour for the 51-year-old Kelly, who finished tied for 14th last week at the PGA Tour's Sony Open in Honolulu. That gave him confidence as he hopped over to the Big Island for his tournament debut at Hualalai. The limited-field event includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.
Kelly closed with a 6-under 66 for a three-day total of 18-under 198. Montgomerie shot 69. David Toms shot 67 and finished two shots back, and Miguel Angel Jimenez was another stroke behind after a 66.
Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, closed with a 70 to finish at 10 under.
Rahm manages frustration, two back at CareerBuilder
Jon Rahm managed the winds and his frustrations Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge to give himself a chance to win his fourth worldwide title in the last year.
Rahm’s 2-under-par 70 on the PGA West Stadium Course left him two shots off the lead going into the final round.
“I wasn’t really dealing with the wind that much,” Rahm said of his frustrations. “I was dealing with not being as fluid as I was the last two days.”
The world’s No. 3 ranked player opened with a 62 at La Quinta Country Club on Thursday and followed it up with a 67 on Friday at PGA West. He made six birdies and four bogeys on the Stadium Course on Saturday.
“The first day, everything was outstanding,” Rahm said. “Yesterday, my driver was a little shaky but my irons shots were perfect. Today, my driver was shaky and my irons shots were shaky. On a course like this, it’s punishing, but luckily on the holes where I found the fairway I was able to make birdies.”
Rahm is projected to move to No. 2 in the world rankings with a finish of sixth or better on Sunday.
Cook leads by one entering final round at CareerBuilder
LA QUINTA, Calif. – Austin Cook hit a hybrid into the fairway bunker on the par-4 18th on a breezy Saturday afternoon at La Quinta Country Club, then chunked a wedge and raced a chip 20 feet past the hole.
Kip Henley, the longtime PGA Tour caddie who guided Cook to a breakthrough victory at Sea Island in November, stepped in to give the 26-year-old former Arkansas star a quick pep talk.
''Kip said, 'Let's finish this like we did on the first day at the Nicklaus Course.' We made a big par putt on 18 there and he said, 'Let's just do the same thing. Let's get this line right and if you get the line right it's going in.'''
It did, giving Cook an 8-under 64 and a one-stroke lead in the CareerBuilder Challenge going into the final round on the Stadium Course at PGA West. Fellow former Razorback Andrew Landry and Martin Piller were tied for second, and Jon Rahm and Scott Piercy were a another stroke back after a tricky day in wind that didn't get close to the predicted gusts of 40 mph.
''I know that I wouldn't have wanted to play the Stadium today,'' Cook said. ''I think we got a great draw with the courses that we got to play on the days that we got to play them.''
Cook played the final six holes on the front nine in 6 under with an eagle and four birdies.
''Starting on my fourth hole, I was able to make a birdie and kind of get the ball rolling and it never really stopped rolling,'' Cook said. ''Kip and I were doing really good at seeing the line on the greens.''
After a bogey on 10, he birdied 11, 12 and 15 and parred the final three to get to 19-under 197.
''I think that tonight the nerves, the butterflies, all that will kind of be a little less,'' Cook said. ''I've been in the situation before and I was able to finish the job on Sunday. I think it would be a little different if I didn't play like I did on Sunday at Sea Island.''
He's making his first start in the event.
''I came in from Hawaii on Monday, so I only had two days to prepare for three courses,'' Cook said.
Landry, the second-round leader, had a 70 at the Stadium. Piller, the husband of LPGA tour player Gerina Piller, shot a 67 at La Quinta. Winless on the PGA Tour, they will join Cook in the final threesome.
''Piller's a good guy and we have played a lot together and same with Cookie,'' said Landry, the only player without a bogey after 54 holes. ''Hope the Hogs are going to come out on top.''
Rahm had a 70 at the Stadium to reach 17 under. The third-ranked Rahm beat up the par 5s again, but had four bogeys – three on par 3s. He has played the 12 par 5s in 13 under with an eagle and 11 birdies.
''A little bit of a survival day,'' Rahm said.
The wind was more of a factor on the more exposed and tighter Stadium Course.
''The course is firming up,'' Rahm said. ''I know if we have similar wind to today, if we shoot something under par, you'll be way up there contesting it over the last few holes.''
Piercy had a 66 at the Stadium.
''I controlled my ball really well today,'' he said.
Adam Hadwin had a 67 at La Quinta a year after shooting a third-round 59 on the course. The Canadian was 16 under along with Grayson Murray and Brandon Harkins. Murray had a 67 on the Nicklaus Course, and Harkins shot 68 at the Stadium.
Phil Mickelson missed the cut in his first tournament of the year for the second time in his career, shooting a 74 on the Stadium to finish at 4 under – four strokes from a Sunday tee time. The 47-year-old Hall of Famer was playing for the first time since late October. He also missed the cut in the Phoenix Open in his 2009 opener.
Charlie Reiter, the Palm Desert High School senior playing on the first sponsor exemption the event has given to an amateur, also missed the cut. He had three early straight double bogeys in a 77 on the Stadium that left him 1 over.
John Daly had an 80 at La Quinta. He opened with a triple bogey and had six bogeys – four in a row to start his second nine - and only one birdie. The 51-year-old Daly opened with a 69 on the Nicklaus layout and had a 71 on Friday at the Stadium.
Phil misses CareerBuilder cut for first time in 24 years
Phil Mickelson missed the cut Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge. It’s a rare occurrence in his Hall of Fame career.
He has played the event 15 times, going back to when it was known as the Bob Hope Classic. He has won it twice.
How rare is his missing the cut there?
The last time he did so, there was no such thing as a DVD, Wi-Fi, iPods, Xbox, DVR capability or YouTube.
The PGA Tour’s Jon Rahm didn’t exist, either.
The last time Mickelson missed a cut in this event was 1994, nine months before Rahm was born.
Mickelson struggled to a 2-over-par 74 in the heavy winds Saturday on the PGA West Stadium Course, missing the 54-hole cut by four shots. He hit just four of 14 fairways, just nine of 18 greens. He took a double bogey at the 15th after requiring two shots to escape the steep-walled bunker on the left side of the green.
Mickelson won’t have to wait long to try to get back in the hunt. He’s scheduled to play the Farmers Insurance Open next week at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, Calif.