Previously, I played competitive hockey. It was at quite a high level, and with and against some significantly better players than me. For the most part I held my own on the field, and I knew that I was addicted to THAT game. I played, coached, managed teams, administered clubs and associations, and even participated in the orchestration of an administrative coup! I took holidays to manage teams, I even took holidays to watch or organise tournaments. I loved the sport, and thought that what I loved most was the fierce competition ... I certainly played in a manner that suggested that I loved the competition!
Wisely however, I stopped 'cold turkey', and moved on to devote my available time to study and to watch my beloved Blues. What I discovered was a pleasant surprise and what I missed the most about hockey was not the competition, but the cameraderie. We devoted a lot of time to our games and our teammates, and combined that with family and developing careers.
While a few former teammates continued to play competitively (and one still does - much to her credit), we found an shared outlet post hockey that meets our needs for physical effort (to varying degrees), displays of skill (to varying degrees) and socialising (to a large degree). Sometimes the post round hot chocolate or latte is the best part of the round, and sometimes it is the 'team birdie' count. More often than not (quite possibly due to Melbourne's drought) we enjoy the best part of the day on the golf course - laughing with the kookaburras, smiling at the joggers and cyclists as they move past at a fair pace, or admiring the flora and fauna.
There is certainly enough time during nine holes of golf to catch up on all the activities of 4 women's busy weeks, as well as go a good way towards solving the problems with society. Despite the dawn start on a Saturday morning, I've grown to look forward to my weekly golf hit (sic) and always leave the club with a smile on my face, more often than not, regardless of the score.
Yep, this certainly is a healthy passtime - for mind and body!