how to carry a golf bag properly

How To Carry A Golf Bag Properly

If you play on the PGA Tour, you don’t have to worry about carrying your golf bag. You simply point at your bag and ask your caddy to pick it up. If you aren’t currently playing on TV, keep reading.

How you carry your golf bag can impact how you play and feel after your round. We don’t want your golf equipment to keep you from playing your best golf. There’s functionality in most carry bags to help you, but not all golfers take advantage of these features.

With that in mind, let’s explore the correct way to carry your golf bag.

Proper Way Of Carrying A Golf Bag By Type

Not all golf bags are the same.

In fact, there are several different types and this can impact how you should carry them. The right bag for you will depend on several factors.

Do you enjoy walking the fairways or prefer riding in a golf cart? How many golf clubs do you bring when you head to the golf course?

Answer these questions and you’ll know the correct golf bag for you.

Based on your selection, here is how you should carry it.


How To Carry A Golf Stand Bag

Golf stand bags are designed for serious/competitive golfers that want to walk when they play.

Also known as carry golf bags, they have several features you should take advantage of:

  • Use the double shoulder straps to carry your bag like a backpack
  • Organize your clubs using full-length dividers to prevent them from banging against each other as you walk

Always carry a water bottle - it is important to stay hydrated when using a carry golf bag.

golfer carrying a golf stand bag with double straps

How To Carry A Golf Cart Bag

This answer is easy. You don’t want to carry a golf cart bag very far - it was designed to carry all of your golf gear and ride on the back of a golf cart.

  • Use the carry strap to get it from the trunk of your car to the Pro Shop
  • It will be heavy, so we recommend you use your dominant shoulder

    How To Carry A Sunday Golf Bag

    A Sunday bag is the ultimate lightweight golf bag.

    You won’t be carrying a full set of golf clubs and any player will be able to handle the weight.

    • Light enough that you can use a single strap to carry or even the handle - whatever you prefer
    • You can only bring 5-7 clubs, so be strategic when determining which ones you will need

    golfers carrying a Sunday Bag two different ways

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    What To Consider When Carrying A Golf Bag

    Before you strap on your golf shoes and walk the golf course, consider the following factors.

    Bag Weight

    How much does your bag weigh empty and how much golf gear do you plan to bring?

    Your golf clubs, golf balls, tees, and rain hood all add weight. A sore and tired back can quickly ruin your golf swing, so make sure you have made your golf bag as light as possible before you tee off.

    Physical Fitness

    Be honest with yourself.

    Are you in good enough shape to walk 18 holes? During a normal round of golf, you’ll walk 5-7 miles. It doesn’t matter that you’re using one of the best golf bags if your body breaks down on the back 9.

    The good news is that you can work on this. There are plenty of exercises specifically designed for golfers. They’ll improve your golf swing and your stamina. Suddenly, walking 18 holes will be no problem.

    Golf Course Terrain

    Do a little research on the course you’re playing.

    There are golf courses that are easy to walk and there are some that are close to impossible. There are two factors that’ll impact your walk. (1) How up and down the course is and (2) How much distance there is from each green to the next tee box.


    Practical Tips For Carrying A Golf Bag

    Load The Golf Bag Properly

    Take time before you leave the house to organize your golf bag. The first factor you need to consider is the weather.

    If there is a 0% chance of rain, there’s no reason to carry your umbrella and rain hood. This is simply adding weight to your bag. On the other hand, if the temperature is going to drop during your round, you might want to put your Titleist pullover in your apparel pocket.

    When it comes to organizing your golf bag, you want to be a Boy Scout. You always want to be prepared without bringing golf gear that you won’t use.

    Assess Your Straps

    The most important feature of your golf carry bag is the straps. Do you have a single strap or a double strap?

    If you have a choice, we always recommend you select the double strap. They allow you to distribute the weight of your bag across your shoulders and back, making it easier to carry.

    golf bag double strap

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    The next step is to ensure your straps are set up properly. If they’re too tight, it’ll be challenging to take your bag on/off and if they’re too loose, the bag will hang too low.

    You also want to make sure your clubs hang at a slight angle so they don’t fall out of your bag as you walk.

    Some golf bags have functionality where the shoulder straps auto-correct, but many are still manual. We recommend some trial & error until you determine the perfect setup.

    Get Rid Of Excess Weight

    When walking the course, there’s no doubt that more weight is a bad thing. A strained back can prevent you from playing golf for weeks or months.

    The easiest way to solve this is to consider buying a lightweight golf bag. If you’re serious about being a walking golfer, this will be an excellent investment in your golf game. 

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    A Pushcart Simplifies The Walking Experience

    If all else fails, you can always start using a pushcart when you play.

    It truly is the best of both worlds. You get to walk the golf course without stress on your body (your back) and you can pack all of your golf gear. Depending on the model of pushcart you select, you can even use a golf cart bag without too much trouble.

    As we mentioned above, you still want to get an understanding of the terrain of the golf course.

    A pushcart can be challenging to use on a hilly layout. If you’re playing a golf course in the mountains (and definitely want to walk), carrying your bag is the better option.

    claire hogle instagram post


    Frequently Asked Questions When Carrying A Golf Bag

    What is the average weight of a golf bag?

    An empty golf bag will weigh between 3-12 pounds depending on the type of bag. Carry golf bags are typically in the 3-7 range and golf cart bags will be 7-12 pounds. Once you add your golf clubs and golf gear, a golf bag can weigh 30+ pounds.

    Is carrying a golf bag bad for your back?

    Carrying your golf bag does put pressure and force on your spine and this can cause a back injury. This can be mitigated by properly configuring your bag straps and by using double shoulder straps. That being said, if you have a history of back injuries, a pushcart is a good idea.

    Is it better to push or carry a golf bag?

    It’s better for your back to push, but there are some advantages to carrying your golf bag. You will have to walk farther when pushing because you have to go around bunkers and greens. On a hilly golf course, it can be more challenging to push your golf bag up the hills than carrying it. Ultimately, it comes down to your personal preference and physical condition.

    Find The Best Way To Walk The Course

    We believe that golf courses were meant to be walked.

    Do you think the first golfers in Scotland in the 15th century used a motorized vehicle? We love the idea of getting exercise while you play. The key is finding the best way for you to walk the course.

    The good news is that you have plenty of options.

    Reduce the weight you are carrying, select only walkable golf courses, and/or try a pushcart. Get off the cart paths and into the fairways!

    Good luck and enjoy your day.

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