Mar 23, 2020 - Sports

Golf becomes a rare athletic escape in the age of the coronavirus

Members of Craddockstown Golf Club in Kildare, Ireland, enjoy a round of golf while practicing social distancing. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile via Getty Images

People around the world are stuck indoors without gyms to visit or recreational sports to participate in, which has made outdoor exercise difficult.

Why it matters: This has left golf — played on wide-open plots of land and doesn't require people to share equipment or come into close contact — as a rare athletic escape.

  • "I believe that adequate social distancing can be performed with golfing," Amesh Adalja, senior scholar at Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, told the Wall Street Journal. "If people can remain six feet apart and not touch common surfaces the game is likely safe."

Yes, but: Not all courses have remained open, and those that have stayed open are asking players to do things a bit differently.

  • New protocols: Leave the flagstick in, one person per cart, no rakes (use your feet) and no post-round handshake (replace with a "head nod" or "club tap," according to a memo sent to patrons of the prestigious Pinehurst Resort).

A bold solution: Some courses have raised the cups an inch off the ground, telling golfers to putt until their ball hits the elevated cup rather than sink their ball into the hole and have to reach their hand in to get it out.

Go deeper: How sports media is handling the coronavirus outage

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Animal Crossing emerges as the game for the coronavirus era

Photo: Nintendo

Nintendo's Animal Crossing: New Horizons, released in the U.S. last week, has quickly emerged as a runaway hit pastime for a population trapped in their homes.

The big picture: Success in the video game industry often requires not only a great story and gameplay, but perfect timing. Nintendo's cartoonish simulation game, which allows players to create their own island getaways, appears to have pulled off all three.

Amazon seeking to hire 100,000 new workers to meet coronavirus demand

Photo: Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Amazon is planning to hire 100,000 new warehouse and delivery workers in the U.S. to meet the growing demand for online shopping amid mass business shutdowns due to the coronavirus, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Why it matters: The coronavirus pandemic has rocked the economy, exposing inequality and causing many companies to cut jobs. The $2 an hour increase in pay will be attractive to many workers, but the hiring surge means 100,000 more people will go to work and not practice social distancing.

Tua Tagovailoa will be the first left-handed NFL quarterback since 2017

Photo: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

When Tua Tagovailoa hears his name called during next month's NFL draft, he will officially become the NFL's first left-handed QB since Kellen Moore retired after the 2017 season.

The irony: Tua was actually born right-handed and still does most tasks righty (writing, eating, even swinging a golf club). But when he was a toddler, his left-handed father, Galu, put the ball in Tua's left hand so he wouldn't be the lone lefty in the family and somehow it stuck.

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