“The solitude of professional golf: a solitary sport”


Why professional golf is the loneliest place on earth


  • Kiradech Aphibarnrat, the sole Thai golfer on the PGA Tour, experienced intense loneliness leading to a decline in his performance.
  • Professional golfers like Nicolas Colsaerts and Hurly Long also struggle with isolation and self-criticism on the course.

In a heart-wrenching article by The Straits Times, the experience of professional golfers in terms of loneliness and isolation is highlighted through the story of Kiradech Aphibarnrat. Kiradech, the first Thai to earn PGA Tour membership, found himself facing soul-crushing loneliness as the only Thai player on the tour. Despite initial successes, Kiradech’s mental health suffered, leading to a decline in his performance and ultimately losing his PGA Tour card.

Other professional golfers like Nicolas Colsaerts and Hurly Long shared similar struggles with loneliness and self-criticism on the course. Colsaerts, a three-time winner on the DP World Tour, expressed the difficulty of staying positive during rough patches in one’s game. Hurly Long, after a challenging year in 2023, highlighted the mental toll of feeling lonely on the course and the impact it had on his performance.

The article also delves into the personal struggles of these golfers, such as Colsaerts questioning his identity as a golfer, husband, and father, and the challenges of balancing professional commitments with personal life. It sheds light on the often overlooked emotional challenges that professional golfers face and the toll it takes on their mental well-being.