History

The origins of golf can be traced back to ancient Rome. Ancient roman drawings portray humans using sticks to move stone like pebbles. Also, the first documentation of gold comes from the Netherlands (year 1297) – it turns out that it was the Dutch who started a game called "spelen met kolven" or stick game. The word “kolv” meant a stick or club. The players used wooden clubs and wooden balls.

The Dutch were great sailors , thus it is not surprising at all that they took the "stick game" with them to distant lands.

In mid 15th century Scotland golfs modern version began. The Scots did not just pointlessly hit the ball around a field, they were the ones who decided to dig holes where to sink the ball. From then on the popularity of the game grew up until 1457 when The King of Scotland with agreement of the Parliament forbade the game. This was due to a perception that the game weakened the abilities of the army – the soldiers were spending much less time at shooting practice and much more time playing golf and soccer.

During the 16th century the game of golf was only played by the higher society, the chosen ones. Although, shepherds in farmlands did not deprive themselves of golf – walking sticks were turned into clubs but as a substitute for the ball they used sheep and rabbit droppings... Historical evidence demonstrates that during that time the game was called “gowf” although from the 17th century the first evidence is found that describes the aristocrat fascination with the game of “Colf”

The first golf club was established in Scotland, in Edinburgh vicinity year 1744. Significantly, it was exactly one year after the Scottish started using a new vegetable in their diet... the potato.

Ten years later, the Saint Andrews golfer society was founded, which today is known as the "Royal and Ancient Golf Club." It is the club that is considered the birthplace of golf and still today the rules and of golf are issued and approved right in St. Andrews.

According to reports, at the end of the thirties the Riga Tennis Club had set up a section for golf – mainly in the interest of foreign diplomats. There had even been a spot set out for a golf course next to the river Daugava, in Kengarags. However, due to insufficient knowledge of construction of golf courses the first 6 holes were opened only in the summer of 1940. Needless to say, the Latvian SSR government did not appreciate the gentlemen’s game – it was even condemned.

The interest in golf returned in March 29th, 1989 when 9 individuals founded the Latvian Golf Federation. 27th of April 1993 LGF was officially registered as a public body, yet it was only in 1995 when it was actually recognized as the Latvian golf representative.

In the mid-nineties golf activity was very much influenced by the Latvian Vilnis Baltiņš Jr.Who organized a golf tour to Nitvaljes golf course in Estonia, also founded the Riga Golf School and held training sessions.

The first real golf course in Latvia was “Viesturi”, in the area of Mārupe in 1998. In year 2000 the “Master” in Plakanciems was introduced. And, of course, OZO golf in 2002 that has lead golf to the level that is now at.