The PGA Tour Needs Another Star to Step Up

Author bio: Alex K. is a writer and partner at Real Money Fantasy Leagues, a website which focuses on connecting to and promoting daily fantasy sports. Although he watches all the major sports, the game of golf remains his summer passion to play and focuses on Fantasy Golf when the weather gets too cold.

The 2012 U.S. Open golf tournament provided viewers with drama until the final putt as Graeme McDowell missed the birdie attempt that would have propelled him into an 18-hole playoff with eventual winner Webb Simpson.

NBC saw a rise of 29% from last year’s ratings on a night where the PGA was competing in primetime against LeBron and Game 3 of the 2012 NBA Finals.

Ratings started off strong that day, as Tiger Woods began the day in the hunt for another golf major and remained strong long after Woods began his parade of bogeys on the front nine.

This U.S. Open showed the PGA two things:

  • Tiger Woods playing well and competing on Sunday is a big boost in the ratings
  • The PGA needs to find another star player to latch on to – or television income for the PGA will begin to dwindle as Tiger nears the end of his career

Last year saw a spark of interest with a young Rory McIlroy, first self-destructing on the back nine of Augusta, then returning to plow over the field and capture the 2011 U.S. Open.

McIlroy is charismatic, likeable, Irish, he has a great golf game and he has a beautiful professional tennis player girlfriend. The PGA was ready to anoint McIlroy as the next one, and have him be the Jack Nicklaus to Arnold Palmer, as the torch of golf greatness gets passed.

Alas, although 2012 started with Rory McIlroy lighting up the fairways and finishing 2nd, 1st and 3rd in his first three tournaments of the year, he became the number one golfer in the world and seemed like he was destined to begin a new era of great golfers.

A 40th place finish at the Masters seemed like a blip on the radar as he finished in 2nd at the Wells Fargo Championship in May.

Since that tournament, McIlroy has missed the cut three of his next four tournaments and was a disappointing non-factor at the 2012 U.S. Open.

The NBC coverage was noticeably focused on a young amateur in the field, Beau Hossler, who began the day in the top 10 but quickly fell to obscurity.

The PGA without Tiger will falter.

The last two years, while Woods recovered from injuries and a failing golf game, ratings for the PGA Tour have been poor. It has never been a secret that Woods’ career put golf back in the spotlight and made it cool to be a golfer again.

It was no longer rich professionals or retirees hitting the links, but teenagers and kids going out on Sundays with their dads to the local golf course. As the game grew, so did the merchandising and the sponsorship dollars for local tournaments.

The PGA Tour saw this, and coverage on TV when Tiger was playing was focused on him, even if he wasn’t going to win the tournament…it was about, “Can Tiger make a comeback?”

Maybe Rory McIlroy can again be that player that captures the attention of the casual fan, but many have said that he lacks the dedication to get his game to the top level.

He’s 23 and already made millions on tour and in endorsements, he has a trophy girlfriend and he’s a star already even if he has a mediocre golf game at the present time.

Tiger’s career has always been driven by shattering Jack Nicklaus’ records and the watch for how many major tournaments he can win is still speculated on every Sunday at golf country clubs.

Until a Rory Mclroy or another young phenom steps up and declares a war on golf’s historic records, the PGA Tour will undoubtedly sink back to mediocrity.

How to Choose the Right Golf Trolley

 

Summary 

This article explains some of the choices available for golf trolleys, and why golfers might want to use one to enhance their game.

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As you are making your way round the course, idly watching other players as they move between holes, have you noticed how the number and type of golf accessories has changed over the last few years? We all seem to be carrying round much more than we used to, and it all takes its toll on our strength and stamina. The individual items don’t weight much, but it all together and there’s a good few pounds on top of your clubs and balls. That’s the main reason why you see many more golf trolleys out on the course – players have realised that it is far better to save their energy for hitting the ball than to waste it carrying all their gear round.

 Of course, these days you have electric golf carts, which make the whole thing much easier. At the push of a button the trolley sets off and all you have to do is steer it across the course. They take energy saving and convenience to a whole new level, letting you concentrate fully on the game in hand. All you have to do is remember to charge them up fully before each round; otherwise you’ve got to push a very heavy trolley indeed, and to make sure you buy one that fits in your car. They do need some maintenance though, and are more expensive than their manual counterparts.

Electric golf trolleys aren’t for everybody for various reasons – maybe they are out of the available budget, or they are too bulky, or they make the round a bit easier than the player feels it really should be. Whatever the case, there are a number of manual trolleys available which come in a variety of designs. To start with, they have either two or three wheels. Two wheeled designs are lighter and easier to handle, but you can only pull them behind you, so that may put off people with arm or back problems who don’t like stretching out an arm behind them. In those cases, three wheeled versions are the answer – although they are slightly heavier, the weight is distributed across a larger area and they can be either pulled or pushed depending on the terrain and the golfer’s preference.

 There is also a choice of materials that the trolley can be made out of. In the past, they were all made of steel, as it is cheap and strong enough to carry a lot of weight without falling apart. That’s the still the case, but two other materials have become popular recently, both of which have advantages and disadvantages when compared to steel. The first is aluminium, which is lighter and therefore easier to manage. It isn’t as durable though and it will rust sooner than steel, so an alternative is titanium. This is both light and strong, but it will cost you quite a bit more money, so you’ll need to consider whether your wallet is up to it first.

Five Reasons to Train with Heart Rate Monitor Watch

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Contrary to the general conception that Heart Rate Monitor Watches are a necessity for patients suffering from cardiac diseases, they can actually be beneficial for all and sundry. Whether you desire to improve your health, achieve better targeted fitness goals, or are aiming at weight loss, Heart Rate Monitor is the ultimate choice for you.

Fitness Trainer

Heart Rate Monitor serves as your personal fitness trainer and monitoring device, as it not only guides you in setting goals for your training sessions, but also monitors your performance and gives you real time feedback on it.

Comfort

The gadget comes with a comfortable, easy to wear and ventilated watch band, which can be worn both during exhaustive workout sessions and daily routine chores. Even for a casual stroll around the block, you can aim at burning a few fats by setting up your aerobic target zone with Heart Rate Monitor Watch. A few models also come with the functionality of sending you audible and visual alerts when you are facing dehydration or you are in need of a nutritional intake.

Location tracking

Connecting with the Global Positioning System (GPS), you can find locations in an easy way. Also you can mark locations of your tracks, so that you can find an easy route to reach that path later. With GPS functionality, you can also download previous tracks and courses, to compete against your own previous scores, and monitor your performance statistics later by connecting with your personal computer or with your online training program.

Zone targeting

Most of these watches allow you to set target zones for your activities, so that you can optimize your performance by selecting a Heart Rate Zone and working within it. They take into account your Maximum and Resting Heart Rate. In this way, you can measure your basic stamina and aerobic competence. This guides the device in setting up training goals for you.

Basic measurements

Heart Rate Monitor Watches offer basic data measurements for parameters like lap/split, recovery heart rate time, time in a specific target zone, calorie counter, speed and distance monitor. Most of them come with stop watch and bicycle mounting options. Connected with PC interface, your coded transmitter will send data wirelessly to your personal computer if it falls in the range.

Beside the aforementioned reasons, there are so many other rationales on why you should conduct your training sessions with a Heart Rate Monitor Watch, and how it can boost your performance during each workout.

 

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Author Bio,

Nancy Kalinton is a passionate cyclist and ardent writer. She has used gadgets like Garmin Forerunner 210 and Garmin 210 for years. Her obsession with cycling and writing has led to a great combination of talent for inspiring and teaching others.

 

 

What to Watch for in This Year’s US Open

Author bio: Jerome Manson is a sports enthusiast who enjoys both watching games and writing about them. When he is not cheering on his team from the stands, Jerome is blogging about 2012 US Open tennis for selectaticket.com.

Football fans have the Super Bowl. Baseball fans get the World Series every October. NASCAR fans, they have the Daytona 500. These are the most prestigious and anticipated events in all of sports. They are actually something even akin to a second Christmas to sports spectators. The aforementioned events happen just once a year, like the Christmas holiday. Soccer fans really get the short end of the stick; they’re big competition, the World Cup, comes around just once every four years. Tennis spectators are not so unlucky. In fact, if anything, the inverse is true for these fans. Once a year, they have four major tournaments to look forward to. These tournaments, the Australian Open, the French Open, Wimbledon and the US Open, combine to make up what is known as the Grand Slam. That is any player who can win each tournament in a single year will have won the grand slam (professional golf has a similar system). Needless to say, it’s not so easy. In the Open era, only three players have accomplished it: Margaret Court, Steffi Graf and Rod Laver. Many more have won all four tournaments over the course of a career, but not all four in the course of one calendar year. Still, to win just one of these tournaments is an unrivaled thrill in a tennis player’s career. For American tennis players, that’s doubly true of the US Open.

The 2012 US Open is scheduled to commence on August 27, with final matches on September 9. The tournament will take place at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York City, the same venue that has played host since 1978. Like years past, the US Open promises to bring together an assortment of the world’s best tennis players, men and women. This includes defending champions Novak Djokovic and Samantha Stosur, along with other world class tennis luminaries such as Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, Roger Federer, Victoria Azarenka, Andy Roddick and Maria Sharapova. All of these players will compete rigorously for a piece of tennis history, a sense of pride, a chance to move up in this year’s rankings, and oh yeah, $1.8 million.

This year’s favorites, barring injury, are current number one players Novak Djokovic and Victoria Azarenka. All 33 courts at the Billie Jean King Center use a DecoTurf cushioned acrylic surface. Hard court surfaces like this do nothing but benefit these two exquisite players. The US Open favors players with powerful serves and who can thrive on the baseline, two characteristics of both Azarenka and Djokovic. And in Djokovic’s case, his play since the beginning of 2011 on has quite possibly been unparalleled with anyone, possibly going as far back at the dawn of the Open era in 1968. However, Roger Federer has an outrageously superb track record here as well. He was victorious in five consecutive tourneys, from 2004 until 2008. And on the women’s side, power players like Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova are not going down without a fight.

US Open spectators, which typically number over 28,000 each day of the tournament, are often treated to stunning upsets too. Just last year, no one anticipated that Samantha Stosur would beat perennial favorite Serena Williams for the title. Not only did Stosur win, she did it handily, in straight sets. Possibly the most famous upset in tourney history happened in 2009, when Federer, who was gunning for his sixth consecutive victory, lost to relative unknown Juan Martin del Potro. The young Argentinian has not won, or even placed in a Grand Slam tournament since. His historic 2009 victory, however, is more than any tennis player could really ask for.

This year’s US Open will, per the usual, thrill and delight tennis fans the world over. It will feature astonishing play, wild upsets and drama that even the best playwrights could not conjure. Tennis fans are waiting with breathless anticipation.

Tips For Training For a Triathlon

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Given Brand provides runners apparel, Ironman watches, hydration belts, and other gear for runners.

Have you ever felt the desire to accomplish something that you had never dreamed of doing? Something that is not only exciting, but also extreme and adventurous. For sport lovers, this is the triathlon – the combination of athletic endeavors that demands a perfect physical and psychological preparation. Supposed you want to challenge yourself to take part in such an event, you should get down to work immediately in order to achieve good results. If you are a novice, this advice will help get you started.

Sports Gear and Equipment

For a traditional swimming-cycling-running triathlon, you will need no unusual gear. However, there are a few important pieces you’ll need. Firstly, the swimming track requires a swimsuit, of course, but it would be a good idea to get one not sunbathing but for lap swimming. Another important thing is to provide goggles as they play a part in your performance. As for the cycling, it’s a good idea to use your own bike, because you are used to it and it probably fits you. If necessary, you can borrow a bicycle but make sure it is of good quality.  Professional running shoes are a must as they are what make you more successful in the last part. Also, make sure the runners apparel If you are to take part in another type of triathlon, you should get some information about the equipment you might need.

 

Physical Training

Now that you have the necessary gear, you can start training. The first thing you should consider is the distance that you plan on completing – you should definitely start with something shorter the first time around. Remember, you needn’t overwork as 5 hours a week is a good starting point, and you can add more from there. It is advisable to concentrate on all of the sports altogether, not in just one, as it develops the whole body’s muscles and gives you energy. Don’t forget to always warm up before and stretch after the training.

Psychological Preparation

 

As the big day approaches, you must stay calm and relaxed. It’s a good idea to try to figure out a plan for success. For example, take in mind that for the final result the transition time is always included and you can try to lessen it. What’s more, prepare yourself to endure the whole thing and start slowly in order to have energy to finish strongly. Finally, remember that you only do it for yourself and to get the thrill out of it. So don’t take it seriously and just have fun because this is what you do it for. 

Barcelona Loses its Biggest Game

FC Barcelona is the most talented soccer club in the world, as some may view them. However as they played their second leg of the UEFA Semifinal against English Premier League giant Chelsea, they faltered in front of their home fans of over 90,000. The team had the advantage most of the game, although they entered the match down a goal from the first leg played in England. Chelsea’s best player, and the core of their defense, John Terry, was ejected during the 37th minute of the first half, allowing Barcelona an incredible 83% possession.

As Barcelona ruled the ball, Chelsea excelled in the counter for there were numerous occasions where the game could have been put out of reach on several breakaways that fell short. Barcelona was granted a penalty kick in the first 5 minutes of the second half, which the entire Camp Nou believed would end the competitiveness of the game, allowing Barcelona to gain the lead and go into preservation mode. However, arguably the best player in the world missed the penalty kick, as Lionel Messi struck the bar, sending fans into a frenzy. Messi looked off all night as he barely had space to operate with Chelsea playing their men back most of the second half. Chelsea defended bravely the second half, not allowing Barcelona to capture the momentum that they had achieved during the first half. And to soccer’s greatest advantage, a goal out of nowhere at the end of regulation by former star Fernando Torres would put Barcelona out of its misery.

The forgotten world class striker regained his popularity in seconds by breaking away from Barcelona’s attacking defensive front of and dancing his way around Barcelona’s goalkeeper, sending 90,000 fans home sick, and Chelsea into the EUFA final.

Top 10 Athletes of All Time

Post contributed by Andrea Jones, on behalf of ChilliSauce.co.uk, Event coordinators and  providers of special Chillisauce Stag Do and chillisauce stag weekends in the UK and abroad.

No single facet of society has greater powers of distraction than sports. Cheering for the home team, watching a great clash of champions, or taking in a title game can lift our spirits even in the darkest of times. Often times single players can transcend their sport, amaze us, and leave everyone in awe of their natural talent in a way many other people simply cannot. Regardless of the sports you consider your favorites there are athletes who are unquestionably considered great.

 

The sporting world has given rise to hundreds of supremely talented individuals during the course of modern human history. Choosing just 10 athletes is not an easy task, but it is possible. There are certain athletes whose accomplishments stand out from the crowd and earn them a place among the greatest of the great.

 

10. Lance Armstrong (Cycling)

9. Bo Jackson (NFL football, MLB baseball)

8. Roger Federer (Tennis)

7. Jesse Owens (Olympian)

6. Tiger Woods (PGA Golf)

5. Wayne Gretzky (NHL Hockey)

4. Muhammad Ali (Boxing)

3. Babe Ruth (MLB baseball)

2. Michael Jordan (NBA Basketball)

1. Jim Thorpe (football, basketball, baseball, Olympian)

 

Any discussion involving the greatest athletes of all time is guaranteed to result in two things, a heated debate about lists such as this and questions about what makes each individual worthy of the honor.

 

Lance Armstrong has become a controversial figure in cycling in recent years during the fallout from a doping scandal. Prior to the scandal however, Armstrong cemented his legacy as a supreme athlete. Armstrong overcame testicular cancer to win a record seven consecutive Tour de France titles and made an entire country sit up and pay attention to cycling.

 

Bo Jackson’s professional careers in baseball and football were short, but impressive. Jackson was a Heisman Trophy winning running back at Auburn University, played four seasons for the Los Angeles Raiders of the NFL, and eight seasons for various teams in MLB. Jackson was a unique combination of speed and power and was the first athlete to ever be voted an All-Star in two major American leagues.

 

Roger Federer helped usher in a new era of great tennis. His knack for winning and his friendly competition for trophies with rival Rafael Nadal have left tennis fans drooling for almost a decade. Among his most impressive feats, Federer was ranked #1 in the ATP polls for a record 237 consecutive weeks from February 2004 to August 2008.

 

Jesse Owens may be unknown to many people in the 21st century, but his impact on society is immeasurable. Owens represented the United States at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin, Germany. Owens brought home four gold medals in track and field events, but he will be forever remembered for other feats. As an African-American, Owens faced segregation at home but represented his country honorably at an Olympic games hosted by Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany hoping to tout Aryan values.

 

Tiger Woods and golf are synonymous in the 21st century. Woods’ 14 major titles trail only Jack Nicklaus’ 18, thanks in large part to his impressive victories and dominant performances on the course. There is no replacing Woods; whenever he misses an event viewership and attendance dwindle.

 

Wayne Gretzky rightfully earned the nickname “The Great One” due to his superior talent on the ice over the course of a 20 year career. Gretzky holds 40 regular season NHL records, 15 playoff records, and six All-Star records. He remains the leading point-scorer in NHL history and is the only player to have ever recorded over 200 points in one season.

 

With a flair for the dramatic and trash talking rhymes, Muhammad Ali brought boxing popularity it has rarely experienced. Unlike so many others, Ali could back up every word of trash talk that passed his lips. Ali’s unique boxing style, dubbed “floating like a butterfly and stinging like a bee”, changed the sport and helped him become the first and only three-time World Heavyweight Champion.

 

No one thinks of baseball without thinking about Babe Ruth. Ruth became the game’s home run king decades before the long ball era would be ushered in, and was the source of a curse that haunted a franchise for almost 100 years. Ruth came into baseball as a pitcher with the Boston Red Sox, was traded to the New York Yankees, and the rest is history. He set every major hitting record for future players to break. Ruth also increased the popularity of the game and helped change it from a low-scoring, speed game to a power-hitting, high scoring game.

 

Michael Jordan is considered by most to be the best basketball player ever and is the measuring stick future players must live up to. Jordan was a pure shooter who possessed an ability to soar above the rest, earning him the title “Air Jordan.” Jordan won the 1982 National Championship with the University of North Carolina and went on to win six NBA titles (1991-1993, 1996-1998) with the Chicago Bulls. Jordan became a marketing icon with Nike and helped popularize the sport around the globe.

 

Jim Thorpe lacks the flare, dramatics, and attention that many others on this list received, but none of them can match his accomplishments as an athlete. Thorpe competed in an era before mass media, and as a Native American in a segregated America his accomplishments were not always appreciated during his time. Thorpe won gold medals in the pentathlon and decathlon at the 1912 Olympics, is a member of the collegiate and pro football Hall of Fame, and also competed professionally in baseball and basketball. Thorpe’s raw athletic talent and ability to adapt to any sport make him the greatest athlete of all-time.