Unraveling the Golf World: Highlights from Golf Digest’s Podcasts


The golf world is a tapestry as diverse and complex as the game itself. Golf Digest’s podcasts, ‘Local Knowledge’ and ‘The Loop,’ brilliantly encapsulate this richness. From probing debates on golf distance to an exploration of golf NFTs and a deep dive into the essence of ‘selfishness’ in professional golfers’ success, these podcasts offer a multifaceted view of golf. This article will delve into some of the most engaging episodes from 2022.

The Crash Course Overhaul

The prospect of a seasoned golfer completely overhauling their game in just 12 weeks seems fantastical, doesn’t it? But that’s precisely what Alex Myers from Golf Digest set out to achieve. He launched himself into a comprehensive program that scrutinized every element of his game – the swing, the mental approach, and even his physical conditioning.

What motivated Myers was a slump in his game. He was hitting a wall, figuratively, and the only way out was an intense, all-encompassing revamp. This journey wasn’t a solitary one; Myers was shepherded by experts who provided guidance and counsel every step of the way. They left no stone unturned – from biomechanics to swing techniques and the psychological aspects of golf.

This overhaul yielded stunning results, shattering many preconceived notions. It was a testament to the power of human potential and the transformative power of determination. The journey was illuminating not just for Myers but also for the listeners who followed his progress. This odyssey gave hope that with the right guidance and a dedicated mindset, it’s possible to break old habits and reach new heights in golf.

The Necessity of Selfishness in Golf

The idea of selfishness is often met with disdain. It’s associated with an insensitivity towards others and an overarching self-interest. But what if selfishness is a prerequisite for success in certain spheres, such as golf? This episode of Golf Digest’s podcast explored this contentious idea.

Golf, unlike many sports, is an individual pursuit. Each golfer is out there on their own, battling not just the course and the conditions but also their own mental game. It’s a lonely sport, where success hinges on the individual’s ability to focus and execute under pressure. In such a scenario, is it really surprising that a certain degree of self-absorption is not just beneficial but necessary?

This episode provided a nuanced perspective on this issue. It explored the lives of professional golfers, their grueling training routines, the countless hours spent away from family, and the relentless pursuit of perfection that underpins their journey. It emphasized that what may seem like selfishness is often just a profound commitment to their craft.

The Dark Side of Golf: Cheating

In golf, a sport that prides itself on honor and self-regulation, cheating is an unforgivable sin. It’s a betrayal that shatters the unwritten code of conduct that golfers live by. This episode dove deep into the murky world of cheating in golf.

Myers, taking the lead once again, examined a cheating incident during a qualifier tournament. It served as the springboard for a broader discussion about cheating – its prevalence, the motivations behind it, and the devastating impact it has on a player’s reputation.

The episode brought to light that despite golf’s gentlemanly image, it is not immune to foul play. However, it also highlighted that the community often comes together to condemn such acts, reaffirming the sport’s commitment to fair play.

The Distance Debate

The debate over distance in golf has raged on for years. With the continuous improvement in golf equipment, professional golfers are hitting the ball further than ever. But is this a good thing for the sport?

This episode explored this complex issue in detail. It delved into the history of golf, tracing the evolution of equipment and the corresponding increase in driving distance. It raised some pertinent questions. Should golf’s governing bodies regulate equipment to restrict distances? Should there be separate rules for professionals and amateurs? Is there a need to ‘roll back’ the ball or the driver?

To dissect these questions, Mike Stachura, Golf Digest equipment editor, was brought on board. Together with Levins, they unpacked the arguments for and against distance regulation, providing a balanced perspective on a deeply divisive issue.

The Tortuous Quest to Break 80

Breaking 80 is a landmark achievement for any golfer. It’s a feat that symbolizes a player’s progression from an amateur to a more seasoned player. But why is this milestone so significant, and why is it so elusive for many golfers?

In this episode, Ryan and another presenter recounted their personal journeys to break 80. They delved into the physical and mental challenges they faced, the guidance they sought from professionals, and the lessons they learned from their peers.

The episode served as a testament to the perseverance and tenacity required to excel in golf. It showed that more than the physical skills, it’s often the mental barriers that prevent golfers from reaching this coveted milestone.

Football Legends and their Tryst with Golf

Some athletes transition into golf post-retirement, and the stories they bring from their respective sports add a unique flavor to the golfing world. One such athlete was football legend Danny Woodhead.

Woodhead shared his journey from football to golf, his experience of testing the newest golf clubs, and his ambitious aspiration to qualify for the Masters. His tales of interacting with Bill Belichick, sans shoes, provided comic relief.

In another episode, pitching legend CC Sabathia revealed his experiences playing golf post-retirement. His stories from his encounters with Michael Jordan’s Grove XXIII golf course and his trials at Pine Valley provided insight into the challenges and joys of transitioning from one sport to another.

Derek Lowe: From the Pitcher’s Mound to the Putting Green

The transformation of Derek Lowe from a two-time All-Star and World Series champion in baseball to becoming a respected golfer on the celebrity circuit is a story of dedication and passion. Lowe’s journey is a vivid illustration of how the skills and tenacity developed in one sport can translate into success in another.

In the podcast, Lowe shared his perspective on the intersection of sports analytics and golf, a topic of increasing importance in today’s data-driven world. The former baseball professional also talked about his stunning win over the legendary LPGA professional Annika Sorenstam, a feat that not only displayed his golfing prowess but also his competitive spirit.

Emmitt Smith’s Memorable Round with Payne Stewart

Emmitt Smith’s recounting of his time spent with Payne Stewart in the Bob Hope Classic pro-am was a standout moment in Golf Digest’s podcast history. Smith, a former Dallas Cowboys superstar, narrated his memorable experience of sharing the fairways with golf legend Payne Stewart. It was an encounter that transcended sports boundaries, forming an enduring memory for Smith and revealing a unique intersection between the NFL and the world of golf.

Through Smith’s narrative, listeners were able to glimpse the profound influence golf can have, even on those known for their prowess in other sports. This episode also underscored the universality of golf, demonstrating how it can form connections across sporting disciplines.

Pat Perez: Unfiltered and Insightful

Pat Perez, renowned for his outspoken nature, offered an unfiltered glimpse into the world of professional golf. As one of golf’s most vocal players, Perez has never shied away from expressing his views, which often results in compelling and thought-provoking discussions.

His deep dive into some of the most contentious and fascinating topics in golf was nothing short of enlightening. Perez’s long tenure on the PGA Tour has equipped him with a wealth of experiences and a unique perspective. This episode provided listeners an opportunity to understand the intricacies of the professional golf world through the eyes of an insider.

The Odyssey Continues…

Throughout 2022, the podcasts from Golf Digest remained as diverse and engaging as the world of golf itself. They ranged from tales of personal self-improvement to heated debates, and thought-provoking discussions on various aspects of the sport.

Each episode carried a distinct essence, reflecting the multifaceted nature of golf. These podcasts highlighted the spectrum of the golfing world, from the trials and triumphs of individual players to the broader issues affecting the sport as a whole. The narrative reminded us that golf, much like life itself, is not about the final score but the journey that leads to it. Each stroke, every fairway crossed, and each challenge overcome is a testament to the resilience and passion inherent in every golfer. As we look forward to the new season, the journey of learning, exploration, and enjoyment through these podcasts continues.


1. What is the purpose of Golf Digest’s podcasts?

The Golf Digest’s podcasts aim to delve deep into the multifaceted world of golf. They cover a broad range of topics, from individual golfing experiences and professional players’ journeys to in-depth discussions about the sport’s most hotly debated issues. The podcasts aim to educate, entertain, and inspire listeners by providing them with a greater understanding of golf’s many aspects.

2. How did Alex Myers overhaul his golf game in 12 weeks?

Alex Myers embarked on a transformative journey to improve his golf game. He followed an intense program overseen by experts, targeting every element of his game — from his swing and body to his mindset. This comprehensive approach resulted in significant changes in his performance, demonstrating that even established players can achieve dramatic improvements with the right approach and commitment.

3. Why is ‘selfishness’ considered an essential trait for success in golf?

In the world of golf, ‘selfishness’ is often misinterpreted. It’s less about disregarding others and more about the self-focus necessary to succeed in this individual sport. Golfers need to dedicate an enormous amount of time to practice, which often involves being away from home and focusing solely on their own skills and performance. This level of self-absorption, while it might be termed ‘selfish’, is often necessary to achieve high levels of success in golf.

4. What was the stance of Golf Digest’s podcast on the distance debate in golf?

Golf Digest’s podcast took a balanced view on the ongoing distance debate in golf. Acknowledging that driving distances have been steadily increasing at the elite level, the podcast also recognized that opinions on this issue differ. Some believe distance is a problem requiring intervention from golf’s governing bodies, while others see it as a natural evolution of the sport. The podcast didn’t advocate for a single solution but discussed various options like rolling back the ball, limiting the driver, and differentiating rules for professionals and amateurs.

5. How do football legends like Danny Woodhead and CC Sabathia relate to the sport of golf?

Danny Woodhead and CC Sabathia, known for their prowess in football and baseball respectively, are both passionate about golf. Woodhead has shared his love for golf clubs and even expressed ambitious goals in golf, such as possibly qualifying for the Masters. Similarly, CC Sabathia, a pitching legend, has been an enthusiastic golfer in his retirement. Their interest in golf illustrates the universal appeal of the sport and its ability to engage athletes from various disciplines.

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