Ever wondered what the world of a Mid Tour or Ladies Mid Tour golfer looked like? From the anticipation of competing, to the happiness found in wins, we bet the ladies on tour have a bit of a hectic life. We wanted to learn all about it and Ladies Mid Tour golfer Mari Varjonen was kind enough to give us some insight as to what it’s like to be one of the ladies doing what they can’t on the green!
How did you first get into golfing?
I started playing in 2002 when I was 22. My mum liked to golf, though my dad and I both thought golf had the most ridiculous rules we had ever heard. But one day, he thought we should go and try to hit some golf balls at the local range and said that if I get excited about the game, he’d pay for my green card and some golf equipment. I thought, “If my mom can actually hit the ball, then so can I.” We ended up going to the range and it was just pure excitement from the first shot.
How was your journey with golfing? How did your passion and commitment change?
I started playing mostly with my parents and their friends. There were no young women at our club, so at some point I started playing with whoever was on the course. For the first 5 years I thought I was playing a lot, but I really didn’t know what was coming my way!
I met my now ex-husband in 2007 and told him “I play golf, so either you start playing with me or I go by myself, but you’d better not whine about me playing”. He chose to start playing as well, and the first summer we ended up playing more than 100 rounds.
After our son was born, I started playing at a different golf club (Porin Golfkerho) and really started to get better and started to enjoy competing. Around the same time, I had read about Ladies Mid Tour on the internet for the first time and thought that was something I wanted to try.
A real game and life changer for me was when I won the Anna Golf tournament in 2014 and the prize was a trip to northern France with all winners from every Anna golf competition that summer. It was a truly great trip and at that point I didn’t even realise how big of a change that trip would be. I ended up meeting my soulmate and future life companion during that trip.
What is the golfing community around you like?
I would say that I have two separate communities around me. The first one is that of course the Club that I play at, and the other is the Ladies Mid Tour community. At the club where I play, we are 1500 players. It’s a tough nut to crack, but once you crack it, you will be part of a tight community and receive a lot of support from others.
The Ladies Mid Tour community is a group of inspiring players and women! It was never a problem to integrate inside the community. We are very welcoming of new players and always happy to meet new members. It’s been such a pleasure to get to know all of these people during the years. I’ve learned so many things about this game just by watching these ladies play.
What do you usually do before a competition? Do you have a certain routine?
I go to the range, warm up a bit and then start hitting the irons. I always start with my 8-iron. After, I make a few putts while listening to music - music always helps me find my rhythm and calm my nerves. It helps me build my own “bubble” where I can concentrate no matter what happens around me.
What do you think is the best thing to come about being a golfer? What is your favourite thing about golfing?
The absolute best thing about golf is the friends that you make. The second-best thing is the feeling of a great golf shot, and the fact that you can challenge yourself and excel. I also enjoy exploring nature at the golf courses -- I love birds, flowers and all the beauty around the courses! I always take a lot of pictures during my rounds.
What is your favourite golfing equipment?
Can we think of my mascots as being golf equipment? I have all these little stuffed animals and figures hanging from the zippers of my bag. They’re my lucky charms! Other than that, I do love my driver and putter as well.
What’s the best golfing tip you’ve ever received?
I’ve received two great tips:
When I told a friend that I was afraid of hitting the ball because my game was just a mess during a competition she asked: “What’s the worst thing that can happen? You would just lose a ball!” This is something I try to remind myself every once in a while.
Another piece of advice I love is “you have to love the birdies more than you are afraid of the bogeys.” I’m still working on this, but I am confident that I will get there.
What is one thing you wish to tell your younger self, who was just starting to golf?
Have fun with the game! Don’t let your insecurities stop your progress.
Do you have any golf tips? Share with us! ⬇️