Sep
10
2009
The Pros Need Some R&R
By Stephanie Wei under General

Tiger Woods doesn’t play in as many tournaments as the average PGA Tour player. He chooses select events with the strongest fields, the most elite ones. But this year he’s elected to have a more demanding schedule. In the past, he hasn’t bothered to play in all of the FedEx Cup events. Why did he decide to do so this season? It was rather baffling he was at The Barclays, but he basically did it as a favor to the PGA Tour and the title sponsor. It’s likely he’s hungry to win after he lost to Y.E. Yang at the PGA Championship — he wants redemption.

The BMW Championship, the third part of the FedEx Cup series, marks his 6th tournament in 7 weeks. He’s tired. So tired that he’s had to adjust his practice schedule. He confessed:

It’s a lot of golf for me. I normally don’t play this much…It’s getting out here and having long practice sessions and things like that. You start cutting back on that and just have a short burst and make sure you get your rest.

He wouldn’t mind a week off in between the first two legs and the final two:

It would give you another little breather in there. You’ve got a big event in the Bridgestone, and then you have the PGA, and then you have these three big events right in a row. So they’re big events, five big events in six weeks.

He’s not the only one who is fatigued. Steve Stricker, who tied for second at The Barclays and won the Deutsche Bank Championship, chimed in:

I don’t think it’s fair to the players or the tournament too much to whip us around in such a quick fashion and get us going again. It’s a tough turnaround, it really is…I haven’t heard any player really enjoy — say they enjoy the quick turnaround…But I’m tired. I haven’t gotten a lot of sleep.

So, there you have it: We should feel sorry for the pros that are cashing in millions of dollars. Poor babies! No, but really, they’re not being spoiled brats or wimps, the pros lead a tougher life than it may appear — the constant travel and mental and physical stress they endure are, in fact, taxing. (But I don’t feel that sorry for them. Most successful people have to work hard.) The rigorous schedule has even taken a toll on Tiger, a guy with such athletic prowess.

The man has spoken. Expect to see changes in the Tour’s schedule next year.

[Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images]