Listening to music while on the green is controversial among some golf enthusiasts. On one side, people argue that having your favorite tunes blasting is inconsiderate to other golfers because it can be a distraction. Many professional golfers, like Ben Crane, notably enjoy listening to their favorite playlist during match play. Others say that listening to music helps calm their environment and improves their game.
The United States Golf Association has even stepped in to regulate the disagreement, stating as per its 2019 rules that music is only allowed on the golf course in moderation and with consideration of others on the green (see Rule 4.3a(4) and Rule 1.2). Now, the understanding is that you can listen to whatever you want—just as long as you're the only one who can hear it.
The best way to find out which music helps you focus the most is by practicing at home and experimenting with different playlists. Thanks to the high-tech putting mats made by PrimePutt, you can obtain a realistic golfing experience from the comfort of your home and determine what music helps you best.
Why Listen to Music While Playing Golf?
Despite its opponents, plenty of people out there see music as a positive addition to their time on the course. They say that golf is meant to be a leisure game and, therefore, should be enjoyable with some casual playlists.
Some players also believe that music helps their performance; a 2019 qualitative study reports that golfers experience improved focus, facilitated swing automaticity, physiological engagement, mood regulation, effort, motivation, confidence, and flow when listening to music on the course.
The amount of quantitative research on the topic is limited, but there is some evidence of a positive relationship between music and playing experiences.
What Music to Listen to While Playing Golf
Just because music is generally good for golfing doesn't mean any golf song will do. The best experiences and results come from a proper selection of playlists—ones that fit the game's nature. To better understand what we mean, we've compiled the below list of example playlists and songs with explanations for why they're ideal for golf.
The Waltz is a style of traditional music that originates from a dance of the same name. It started in Austria in the 1600s but quickly spread across Europe because of its unique rhythm and rich sound.
Based on a 3/4 time signature, Waltz music is slow, elegant, and paced. Many golfers believe it's great for performance, as the style's consistent tempo is perfect for counting and timing swings. Additionally, Waltz music can make players feel more upbeat, which can lift their spirits and help them perform better since their mood has been improved. Additionally, upbeat music can make you feel confident, so if you're having doubts before a tournament, listening to upbeat music, like Waltz, can help you feel more motivated and ready to take on your next opponent.
"Wake Me Up," Avicii featuring Aloe Blacc
Released in 2013, "Wake Me Up" by Avicii and featuring Aloe Blacc is a remix of the artist's original song recording. Aloe Blacc, an American soul singer, joins this time, adding new lyrics and rhythms to the first version. "Wake Me Up" is calm and fast-paced at the same time. Blacc's vocals go well with the guitar strums and upbeat melodies. It's the type of song you're probably used to hearing on the radio, but it works just as well for building a positive attitude while on the course. Calm music can help players feel more relaxed before they enter a tournament, so this would be a great song to listen to while warming up for your next round of golf.
"Straight Down the Middle" By Bing Crosby
If you're a particularly passionate fan of golf culture, "Straight Down the Middle" by Bing Crosby is sure to please. This three-minute single was written and sung by the famous singer in 1941, but even though it's old, it's still a big hit among fans of the game. In the song, Crosby sings to an old-time tune while reciting lyrics that speak to golf's appeal. Both classic style and bustling character make "Straight Down the Middle" great for getting into a good mood on the course and helping a player feel more focused on the game.
Many people's main attraction to golf comes from the game's tranquility and laid-back atmosphere. You need to be at ease when you're playing, ideally in a happy place that allows nothing but focus on the swings and putts. Country artists such as Kenny Rogers, Tim McGraw, and Kenny Chesney are great to listen to on a sunny day. Country music is a fantastic tool that can create this type of environment, characterized by slow, down-to-earth, and consistent moods. Many golfers find the genre helpful in getting in the zone after a long week's work or a potentially tricky last hole.
Jazz's Greatest Hits
Believe it or not, jazz music is considered one of the best genres to listen to while on the course. In the same qualitative study from 2019 that we talked about earlier, researchers found that jazz music made men's putting accuracy improve by 17% and women's by 10%. While the pool of participants was relatively small, scientists say they saw a definite difference in performance between jazz and other styles of music like country and hip-hop.
Though playing music of different types while playing golf can be helpful, it ultimately comes down to what works best for you and your game. If you find that you're more relaxed and focused when listening to classical music, then by all means, stick with that!. Whether it's the Rolling Stones or playing "Bohemian Rhapsody" on a loop, your ideal golf playlist should be composed of songs you enjoy.
If you are still determining which music would be best for you, you could always practice at home with PrimePutt putting mats. These mats are guaranteed to give you a realistic green feel in your living room.
For a delightful golfing experience, many players enjoy the company of music on the green. It has been found to enhance focus, mood, and confidence. Genres like Waltz, Country, and Jazz's Greatest Hits are popular choices. To explore your perfect playlist, try practicing at home with PrimePutt's high-tech putting greens, which provide a realistic golfing feel. Discover the tunes that elevate your game and create a serene atmosphere on the course.