Even though the whole world was at war people had to keep up with their daily activities and tend to their hobbies to keep the mind away from the horror that was the war. That included golf, the one sport that did take off during the era with some great players like Gary Player, Ben Hogan, Sam Snead , and others that define the modern game, playing some of their best golf during that period. The 1940s golf wear also took off with a stylish uniform that is still recognizable today.
Reading old journals, not much has changed during the 60 years sense the war – people would go into the backyard and hit practice balls into a net, they would practice their putting, even though going to the course was not an option “keeping the mind occupied and acting like I would normally, practicing my game became something I did everyday just to feel normal” is how one man describes how he escapes the “war”, at least for a moment. That sound much like when you see how the modern golf amateur does his practice.
During the time period big tournaments like the British open and Walker Cup where cancelled but the PGA tour in the USA went on like normal. Ben Hogan got his first solo PGA Tour win while Byron Nelson won the PGA championship.
In Europe people would try to keep up with the PGA tour and most of what I have read indicates that it was an important aspect of keeping moral high, this does of course include other sports or activities such as general fitness, football (soccer), tennis, and other things that could help people deal with what was going in around them.
One man talked about going out during the evening when it was dark and did light jogging when no one would notice, “it was very important to keep active, so my mind would stay awake and my body fresh”. And it is not like people would have the option to have their personal gym installed in their bedroom with elliptical machines and bikes installed like people today. Few option, war going on, little to no food available so going out jogging was one of the few options. It is amazing to thing about how important sport can be for the moral of a whole nation.