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Indisputably the greatest international golfer of all time, Gary Player is an energetic evangelist for maintaining health of both the body and the mind. His lessons on golf, life, and aging well show audiences how hard work and mental fortitude translate from the game of golf to the game of life. The Black Knight brings his positive attitude and cheerful enthusiasm into all his endeavors.
Gary Player is in his 80s, but he doesn’t like the word “old.” With a workout regimen that includes doing 1,000 crunches several times a week, often with a 100-pound weight on his chest, his logic is hard to dispute.
Considered one of the greatest professional golfers of all time – one of “The Big Three,” along with Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus – Player first became an icon of fitness during his professional golf career. Today, he inspires audiences with energetic talks about his career and the philosophy that has kept him in prime condition: fitness and a proper diet are vital to success in all endeavors.
“I can beat most youngsters in the gym,” he told Golf Digest. “I look at myself as young. I eliminate the word ‘old.’”
Nicknamed the Black Knight, Player booked 168 wins in a career that spanned six decades. He is one of only five players ever to complete the career Grand Slam, winning all four of golf’s major championships. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1974. Later, Player became the only professional golfer to win the career Grand Slam on both the Regular Tour and the Senior Tour.
A native of South Africa, Player has penned or co-authored three dozen books on golf, including Gary Player’s Black Book: 60 Tips on Golf, Business, and Life from the Black Knight, which was published in 2017.
Exemplifying one of his core beliefs, that marrying personal passions with business results in a winning outcome, he has also launched several extremely successful firms. Player’s golf course design company – Gary Player Design – has designed more than 400 golf courses on six continents, and has consulted on luxury real estate projects worldwide. Player has seen similar success as a philanthropist, raising more than $64 million for children and impoverished communities through The Player Foundation.
Player no longer competes professionally – he has his hands full with 22 grandchildren – but he continues to play and teach. He has often said that “golf is a puzzle without an answer.” But perhaps Player’s most famous quote is, “The harder you work, the luckier you get.”
Gary Player: In His Own Words
Gary Player on hard work, healthcare and discipline
A Conversation with Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player
Big Interview: Gary Player
Translating Mastery in Sport into Mastery of Life
Secrets to Fitness and Aging Well
Committing to Quality in Business
Gary Player's Black Book: 60 Tips on Golf, Business, and Life from the Black Knight (opens in a new tab)
Don't Choke: A Champion's Guide to Winning Under Pressure (opens in a new tab)
Gary Player: A Game For Life (opens in a new tab)