Tiger Woods recently opened up about his future with regards to playing full-time competitive golf following the February car accident that left with him severe injuries he’s still recovering from. And in that candid interview with Golf Digest, the 45-year-old ruled out playing full-time golf again.
“I think something that is realistic is playing the tour one day—never full time, ever again—but pick and choose, just like Mr. [Ben] Hogan did. Pick and choose a few events a year and you play around that,” Woods said.
“You practice around that, and you gear yourself up for that. I think that’s how I’m going to have to play it from now on. It’s an unfortunate reality, but it’s my reality. And I understand it, and I accept it.”
Woods suffered fractures in both the tibia and fibula in his right leg following the February 23 single-car crash in Los Angeles. He subsequently underwent extensive surgery that was followed by rehabilitation.
“I don’t have to compete and play against the best players in the world to have a great life. After my back fusion, I had to climb Mt. Everest one more time,” the golf legend said in reference to a previous back injury and his recovery process at the time.
“I had to do it, and I did. This time around, I don’t think I’ll have the body to climb Mt. Everest, and that’s OK,” he added. “I can still participate in the game of golf. I can still, if my leg gets OK, I can still click off a tournament here or there. But as far as climbing the mountain again and getting all the way to the top, I don’t think that’s a realistic expectation of me.”
And though Woods also said it’s going to take a while before he fully recovers, he said doing simple things like watching his son play or having personal time for himself are activities he currently holds dear as he works on getting fit.
“I have so far to go … I’m not even at the halfway point. I have so much more muscle development and nerve development that I have to do in my leg. At the same time, as you know, I’ve had five back operations. So I’m having to deal with that. So as the leg gets stronger, sometimes the back may act up … It’s a tough road,” he said.
“I’m just happy to be able to go out there and watch Charlie play, or go in the backyard and have an hour or two by myself with no one talking, no music, no nothing. I just hear the birds chirping. That part I’ve sorely missed.”