Golf is one of the most versatile sports in the world. It can be played virtually anywhere in any kind of form. The European Urban Golf Cup is a celebration of that, on a completely different level.
Golf is rich with tradition as we know, and each golf club and course tell us stories. The sport has ancient roots in the streets, when Dutch sailors hit rocks with sticks, counting their strokes along the way.
Today, urban golf has quietly become a cultural hit in many countries including England and France. In the streets, all you need is one club, some soft golf balls such as Almost Golf balls, and a passion for the game.
The best part about the urban game is that the world is your golf course. It’s the variation of golf where you are the golf course designer.
In celebration of this great, accessible way of enjoying golf, the European Urban Golf Cup is played every year. It has been played since 2013 and hopes to continue its growth, being the sport’s major championship.
Urban golf is planting its roots in Europe, and expanding
The EUGC is in somewhat of a FIFA World Cup format. What started as team Germany versus team France in 2013, has expanded to 10 teams representing 10 different countries. Germany won the historic first championship in 2013.
This year, the field includes the UK, France, Ireland, Germany, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Luxemburg, Hungary and the newest squads, Poland and Denmark. Prague will play as the host of this year’s tournament in September.
Team France looks to defend their title after defeating Germany in what has become an exciting rivalry in urban golf. With more teams this year, it’s up for grabs in Prague.
The goal of Urban Golf is simple. A course is setup in a certain location of the host country, whether it’s a park, in the city, the docks (pictured on my Twitter account), or the beach, there are many places to play. In short, you can play virtually anywhere you want, the places I mentioned are just a sample.
Then, you tee off with either an iron or hybrid, and you can use a putter to finish each hole off. There’s no real hole you’re aiming for, you’re simply aiming for a natural resource as a target, so it can be a tree, fire hydrant, pole, or whatever landmark happens to fit.
Urban golf grows a traditional game without the traditional restrictions
What makes this event so special is that, it takes away the restrictions of golf, it makes it street friendly. In a sport like basketball, streetball has always played a huge role in the sport and even has its own Augusta National at Rucker Park.
Urban Golf does the same for golf, but what’s cool is that you can play literally anywhere. Although street basketball is great, and I’m as big a fan of it as anyone, you still need a court to play on.
In urban golf, all you need is your favorite wedge, some soft golf balls, and your imagination. It
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takes you on an adventure, much like the traditional on-course game.
To have such a big event dedicated to the world of urban golf is special. I just hope the United States can have a team participate in it.
It would be a great way for the U.S. to catch the urban golf bug. It’s already at 10 countries, so there’s no doubt that we will see more teams come together. That includes a team USA hopefully.
The next great thing would be to have some online coverage of the event. Perhaps a live webcast, for anyone who wants to tune in and watch these street titans duel it out.
It’s personally exciting for me because I used to always hit golf balls around the local elementary school in my old neighborhood in the Chicagoland area. This was done even in the winter (try swinging in a puffy jacket, it’s tough).
Even my Facebook cover photo has “Street Golf Revolution” on it. To see it grow is great, and I hope it starts to get more coverage and more teams because it’s truly an unpredictable and adventurous golfing tournament.
What are your thoughts on urban golf? Have you played or attended an event? Let us know in the comments section or you can hit me up on Twitter @ChiGolfRadio.