Wie's offseason: Tips from Tiger; Shark diving


Tigers and Sharks.

That’s the company Michelle Wie hung around with in her down time this offseason.

Well, actually, it was one Tiger, and a whole bunch of real sharks.

At the Pure Silk Bahamas Classic for the LPGA season opener Tuesday, Wie shared a couple highlights from her time off after last season. She talked about helping Tiger Woods give a youth clinic for his foundation at the Medalist Golf Club in South Florida two weeks ago and about swimming with sharks in the ocean off the coast of Hawaii last month.

Wie said she was thrilled when Woods called her for help.

“Tiger can’t really hit golf balls right now, unfortunately,” Wie said of Woods’ back ailment. “They asked me to hit balls for him.”

Wie said she had not seen Woods in about 14 years. While she helped Woods, she said he also helped her, with her short game.

“It was really cool to meet up with him and hear him talk,” Wie said.

What short game wizardry did she learn from Woods?

“A secret, but it was cool,” Wie said.

In December, Wie joined best friend and model, Meg Akim, in a swim among sharks three miles off the coast of Oahu with a diving guide team. It was Akim’s idea.

“She had a contact that had shark diving,” Wie said. “And I was like, `It's in a cage, right?’ She was like, `Yeah, yeah, I'm sure it is.’ I'm like, `You didn't call?’. . . So, we get there, and they're like, `Oh, yeah, there's no cage, there's no need for a cage. We're going to go to a place where they naturally hang out, there's 30, 40 sharks.’ We went three miles out, and I'm literally just about to faint.”

Wie said she was the first in the water with the diving guides giving advice.

“They're like, `Oh, by the way, they really like GoPros, so they might get close . . . Just keep your arms and everything close to your body, don't be sprawling out,’” Wie said.

Wie didn’t faint. She said she liked it.

“I got in the water and it was amazing,” Wie said. “It was so peaceful. They were just swimming around you. They're huge, it was awesome.”

Wie was asked what her management team thought of the excursion.

“I didn't really tell them that until afterwards,” Wie said. “I was like, yeah, so I went shark diving, all my limbs are still here.’”