How is golf relevant to Military World Games?
By Wei Lynn Tang
02:27

There's a saying that men talk business on the golf course. The same could be said for the Military World Games, although it may be a different kind of business.

Golf is one of the 27 sports events at the 7th Military World Games in Wuhan, capital of central China's Hubei Province. The men's golf competition is held at the Modern Land Beyond Sky Golf Course in the city.

After seeing high-intensity obstacle sports, such as the pentathlons, and other sports closer to the military, such as boxing, shooting and parachuting, one might wonder why golf was made part of the games.

However, the participating athletes can clearly see the game's relevance.

Nicolas Calvet says golf offers many worthwhile lessons that can be applied to both one's life and career. /CGTN Photo

Nicolas Calvet says golf offers many worthwhile lessons that can be applied to both one's life and career. /CGTN Photo

Nicolas Calvet from France, who has been playing golf for 18 years now, termed golf as "one of the most complete games" in the competition.

"Golf is a sport of commitment, a game of respect and fair play. It has given me a lot, personally and in the job, because it teaches you to be humble and honest to yourself," said Calvet.

"When you're on the course, you're on your own. If you make a mistake, and you will, it's nobody's fault but yours. With this you're trained to advance [in life]. And in the military world, if you can't just look at yourself and say that's me, I'm this and I have this, you can't go anywhere," he added.

"Golf is not typically a military sport but you learn to be patient, to concentrate, because you have four and a half hours to walk on the course, and you have to concentrate on every shot that you make," said Arjan De Haas, a player from the Netherlands. 

"You can talk about their family, about their homes, what they do at home. We're all in the army but different parts of the army, so it's nice to talk about it," he said.

Arjan De Haas (2nd R), a player from the Netherlands, says golf teaches one to stay in the moment. /CGTN Photo

Arjan De Haas (2nd R), a player from the Netherlands, says golf teaches one to stay in the moment. /CGTN Photo

As many as 74 players from 15 countries are participating in the golf competition in Wuhan. Players from three different countries are grouped together for the 18-hole game that sometimes lasts for four hours.

Many veteran players are in China for the first time.

Some find the greens at the Modern Land Beyond Sky Golf Course, tougher. They say the grass is longer and greener, which makes it difficult to putt.

"This is more difficult because there's a lot of water. You have to be very precise," De Haas said.

Calvet says golf is a sport of commitment, a game of respect and fair play. /CGTN Photo

Calvet says golf is a sport of commitment, a game of respect and fair play. /CGTN Photo

Golf is the only sport where hosts China are absent.

"China's got one of the best players, Li Haotong. He's a fantastic player. He's in now at the PGA tours," Calvet said, adding that he hopes to meet Li someday.