Ever arrive at the course super early so you can get in some range time before your round? You start to hit some balls but nothing is going right. The golf ball is going everywhere but straight. You stick with it and with a few balls left you start striking it perfectly.
So now you head to the first tee with a little more confidence. Unfortunately, you slice your drive wickedly out of bounds. Someone in your foursome shouts out "breakfast ball." Ahh, what a relief and joy to hear those two beautiful words. Now, hopefully, you can begin your round the right way.
So what exactly is a breakfast ball? A breakfast ball is a term golfers use when they want to take a mulligan. Now you may be asking, what are mulligans in golf?
A mulligan is a do-over on a shot that didn't go the way you wanted it to. We've all been there before. We step up to the tee and swing away, only to watch in horror as our ball dribbles off the tee or ends up in the water. It's frustrating, but it happens to even the best of us. That's when a breakfast ball comes in handy. You can pretend like it never happened and retee your ball without a penalty. It is typically used on the first tee.
Why the Breakfast Ball Is Important
The breakfast ball gives golfers a chance to start their round on a positive note. Sometimes you're late and you are rushing to the first tee. You arrive at the tee box with your nerves jangling, your mind racing and you haven't even warmed up. As a result, you hit a terrible shot and for the next few holes you're beating yourself up. And your poor play continues.
But with a breakfast ball, you can calm yourself down and start over. You tell yourself that first tee shot doesn't matter; what matters now is how you play from here on out. The breakfast ball gives you a chance to calm your nerves and focus on your game. This can make all the difference in how you play the rest of the round.
For some golfers just the fact that they know they have a breakfast ball available is enough to keep them calm and loose and bomb the first ball down the middle of the fairway.
Should you Take a Breakfast Ball
Some golfers may be hesitant to take a mulligan because they see it as cheating. Yes, it is against the rules of golf and definitely not allowed in tournament play. But the truth is everyone hits bad shots from time to time, especially off the first tee.
So as long as it's the first shot of the day and your playing partners have all agreed that a breakfast ball is acceptable, why not? Some would argue that it's an essential part of the game and allow 1 per 9 holes and not just on the first tee. After all, golf is supposed to be fun! And what's more fun than getting a second chance on a bad shot?
Just don't turn it into a new habit - asking for lunch balls, dinner balls, or happy hour balls. Because that would be cheating and not the right way to respect the game or your playing partners.
So there you have it—the case for why the breakfast ball (a.k.a Mulligans) could be the most important shot of the day. Next time you step up to the first tee, don't be afraid to take one if your drive doesn't go the way you wanted it to. Just make sure your foursome has defined the rules before the start of the round. It could be just what you need to salvage your round of golf from a disastrous start!
Do you agree? Or do you think it's just another way to give yourself a freebie?
If you find yourself taking too many mulligans maybe you need to practice more. We've got got the perfect solution below in our article about chipping and golf practice nets.
If you're looking to practice indoors here's a brilliant solution.