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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

Go deeper

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
1 min ago - Sports

College basketball is back

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A new season of college basketball begins Wednesday, and the goal is clear: March Madness must be played.

Why it matters: On March 12, 2020, the lights went out on college basketball, depriving teams like Baylor (who won our tournament simulation), Dayton, San Diego State and Florida State of perhaps their best chance to win a national championship.

7 mins ago - World

Scoop: Israeli military prepares for possibility Trump will strike Iran

Defense Minister Benny Gantz attends a cabinet meeting. Photo: Abir Sultan/POOL/AFP via Getty

The Israel Defense Forces have in recent weeks been instructed to prepare for the possibility that the U.S. will conduct a military strike against Iran before President Trump leaves office, senior Israeli officials tell me.

Why it matters: The Israeli government instructed the IDF to undertake the preparations not because of any intelligence or assessment that Trump will order such a strike, but because senior Israeli officials anticipate “a very sensitive period” ahead of Biden's inauguration on Jan. 20.

Wall Street bets it all on a vaccine

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

It's the time of year when Wall Street shops are rolling out predictions for where they see the stock market headed in the coming year. There's one common theme: Widespread distribution of a vaccine is the reason to be bullish.

Why it matters: Analysts say vaccines will help the economy heal, corporate profits rebound and stock market continue its upward trajectory.