Sometimes you just need to clap your hands when someone answer one of those vexing questions plaguing the universe—what happens when you smoke weed and play golf? How the fine folks behind Golf Digest’s The Loop found the answer might surprise you. Just kidding. They got three dudes progressively higher as they shot some golf balls.
Using each golfer’s handicaps, The Loop broke down the three men by three categories: Advanced, Amateur, and Casual. They ran the trio through three drills that every golfer has ran through at some point. Driving range, Closest to the Pin, and Putting. First the men were asked to run through the drills sober to get a base line on their various skills.
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“When you smoke cannabis, you might see them start to relax, and the performance might actually get better,” Dr. Ara Suppiah, a sports medicine physician, says in the video. He later adds: “You might also see them reach a point where they don’t really care.”
Guess what? The results confirm the good doctor’s hypothesis. The golfers were tested after smoking cannabis in the amounts of 6 mg, 18 mg, 34 mg, and 50 mg. Through the 6-34mg range we saw most of the golfers driving improve, as their muscles relaxed, and allowed them to focus on generating power. Putting, as one might expect, steadily declined the higher each golfer became.
In layman’s terms, the results were consistent with what you might notice while playing Madden on your couch after smoking a joint: Reduced inhibition and a greater willingness to go for it—see the improved distance figures—as well as a small breakdown in fine motor control—see approach and putting accuracy (also why you just lateraled it to the other team when you meant to juke).
The Loop believes the golfers found a sweet spot at 18 mg where attributes like hand-eye coordination, energy, and focus weren’t sacrificed in the name of relaxed nerves, muscles, and mood. But anymore than that, as you can see in the video, the golfers made more jokes, didn’t care if they shanked it, and started craving their next meal.
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Here’s how Jack, the group’s amateur, summed it up by day’s end: “I’m so tired. I think when you get stoned and play golf, a little bit is good. I think our results probably show you can handle that. [How stoned we are now] is excessive.”