Oct 17, 2016 | 06:49 am

More Healthy News For Golfers

In this space last week we reported on a study that said golfers live, on average, five years longer than non-golfers. It turns out there is more to that report, which is part of the launch of the “Golf & Health Project” by the World Golf Foundation, the non-profit organization that develops and supports initiatives that positively impact lives through golf and its values, and, among other things, provides oversight to the World Golf Hall of Fame.

The Golf & Health Project has been reviewing thousands of research papers on health, illness prevention, and associated injuries, and has learned that the game is expected to decrease the risk of more than 40 major chronic diseases including type 2 diabetes, heart attacks, and colon and breast cancer, while also having positive impacts on cholesterol, body composition, metabolism, and longevity.

The project has the support of all of golf’s major organizations and has eight international ambassadors: Aaron Baddeley, Annika Sorenstam, Brooke Henderson, Padraig Harrington, Ryann O’Toole, Se Yeon Ryu, Zach Johnson, and, of course, Gary Player. For more information on what the project is doing and some of its early findings, check out its website. You also can follow the project on Twitter and Facebook, and watch interviews with the people involved.

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Oct 14, 2016 | 10:15 am

New Company for Greg Norman

In an interview earlier this summer with LINKS, Norman said he was working on several major opportunities—“game changers” as he called them—that he hoped to roll out soon. “I haven’t been this excited about my business since I was No. 1 in the world,” Norman said. “We are going to spaces nobody has been before with a major corporate partner.”

One of those major announcements came out yesterday when Norman announced his company, Great White Shark Enterprises, is changing its name to the Greg Norman Company. A firm change in direction isn't clear, but Norman's holdings already include a clothing company, development arm, course design firm, an eyewear brand, and much more.

The homepage of now reads, "No business can stand still. Businesses change just like people. So like our icon, the shark, we keep moving... New logo. New company name. New inspiration for all of our fans. What will this mean for you? Great things to come on the horizon."

What do you think about the change? Are you more attracted to a product because Norman has his name on it? Let us know in the comments below!

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Oct 13, 2016 | 06:36 am

A New Course For Bandon

Well, it’s official, sort of. Bandon Dunes Golf Resort on the Pacific coast of southern Oregon will be adding a fifth 18-hole course to its already terrific roster. But this one will be a little bit different, and here’s why. The course will be built on land presently known as the “Sheep Ranch,” a 300-acre tract just north of the resort that Tom Doak turned into a free-form golf adventure about 15 years ago (that’s it in the photo above). It used to be that if you knew who to call, you could pay about $100 and arrange for someone to leave the gate unlocked, allowing you entrance onto a mostly flat site that overlooked the ocean and featured 13 greens: How you played them was entirely up to you, hitting from anywhere toward any green, at any length (and, if you cared, any par), you wished. And you could spend as much of the day as you wanted there, inventing your own “holes” and playing over land similar to what the resort offered just a few miles away. Bandon Dunes developer Mike Keiser has let slip that he’s leaning toward having Gil Hanse—architect of the Rio Olympics course among many others—reconfigure the Sheep Ranch into the resort’s fifth 18-holer. In a report published online, Keiser said that Hanse is “the front runner” but “it’s not a done deal,” while also saying that the course should be ready in about two years’ time. So if you needed another reason to play Bandon, now you’ve got it.

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Oct 12, 2016 | 10:01 am

Snake Charmer

When Bryson DeChambeau won the DAP Championship on the Tour in September, he became the first person since Bobby Jones in 1930 to win a major golf event with irons of the same length, as far as we can ascertain. Now his equipment company, Cobra, is introducing two different models of irons with the same shaft length. Called the F7 One Length and F7 Forged One Length, the clubs feature shafts with the length of a 7-iron, which Tom Olsavsky, Cobra's head of R&D says, "will help to bring more consistency and simplicity to the game of golf for all players." Engineers had to reconfigure the head of each iron to provide consistent trajectory and distance gapping from long irons to wedges, but unlike DeChambeau, you don't need an upright, one-plane swing to take advantage of the innovation. "There is a misconception that single-length irons are only for a single-plane swing like mine," he says. "That is simply not true. Regardless of how you swing and what your skill level is, you can benefit from the simplicity of a constant length set of irons. I am proud to be at the forefront of this with Cobra as preliminary research has shown that single-length sets can make the game easier and more enjoyable for players of all swing types.” Available in January, the F7 will retail for $700 steel and $800 graphite, the F7 Forged for $1,000.

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