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Paying a little attention to packing can make for a much more enjoyable golf vacation.
Paying a little attention to packing can make for a much more enjoyable golf vacation. (Brandon Tucker/WorldGolf.com)

Instruction tips for the traveling golfer

Dana RaderBy Dana Rader,

CHARLOTTE, N.C. - I am one of those people that pack for everything. I like to be prepared and ready for whatever may come. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when packing for a big golf trip, and a few reminders of things you need to do before leaving.

The obvious things to pack are extra golf balls, gloves, and a rainsuit and golf shoes. I like to keep these things in my golf bag along with a first aid kit. Items such as a bee-sting kits, Advil, Band-Aids, sunscreen and insect repellent are key as well.

You may not always need them but others in your foursome may and you can be the hero for the moment. I am also a firm believer in packing snacks such as a protein bar or Fig bars to assist in maintaining blood sugar levels.

Sometimes, play can be slow and hours can go by before getting a meal. Snacks are wonderful and very beneficial not only in maintaining your blood sugar but will also assist in maintaining your ability to concentrate.

Try to steer away from snacks that are high in sugar. Too much sugar and spikes the blood sugar levels leaving you on a sugar high and then the blood sugar begins to drop leaving you tired and having even more difficulty concentrating. Peanut butter and crackers are a great protein and carbohydrate snack; together they are ideal and make the blood level stay on course.

Next, be sure you check ahead with the golf course for dress codes and any other rules that you and your group should be aware of. These rules can hinder your enjoyment if you find them out minutes before you play, it may make a big difference to your enjoyment if it is a ninety degree day and carts are on the path and there is no on-course beverage service.

If you know the rules ahead of time you can better prepare. Another great question is asking about the course condition such as aerification or any other concerns about the course that may hinder your enjoyment.

Last, don't forget to take a lesson prior to going on your trip. The lesson should give you a few tips to help you focus on pre-shot routine and taking only one or two swing thoughts on the course.

I have helped hundreds of people get ready for their golf vacations and the best advice I can give you is to have something to focus on while you are playing. By getting expert advice from your Pro, you won't have to rely on the "experts" in your foursome to give you their ten things to be think about on your downswing. Most importantly, have fun on your trip and keep out of trouble.

Dana Rader, Director of Golf at Ballantyne Resort, Charlotte, N.C., is owner and founder of the Dana Rader Golf School. She is the author of "Rock Solid Golf, A Foundation for a Lifetime."

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