The golf superstar spoke to a small group of friends and members of the media in Florida this morning, marking his first public appearance since his November car crash led to accusations of infidelity.
"Every one of you has good reason to be critical of me. I want to say to each of you, simply and directly, I am deeply sorry for my irresponsible and selfish behaviour," he said.
"I was unfaithful, I had affairs and I cheated. What I did was unacceptable.
"I know people want to find out how I could be so selfish and so foolish. People want to know how I could have done these things to my wife Elin and to my children. And while I have always tried to be a private person, there are some things I want to say."
He continued: "Elin and I have started the process of discussing the damage caused by my behaviour. As Elin pointed out to me, my real apology to her will not come in the form of words, it will come from my behaviour over time. We have a lot to discuss, however what we say to each other will remain between the two of us."
Woods went on to say that he was aware that his behaviour had "disappointed" his friends, fans, business partners, staff and sponsors, and revealed that he had spent the past 45 days receiving "guidance" for the issues that he is facing.
The athlete continued to deny reports that Elin had attacked him on the night of his crash, insisting that "there has never been an episode of domestic violence in our marriage" and that Elin deserves "praise, not blame". He also pleaded with the media to leave his wife and their two children alone.
He added: "I plan to return to golf one day, but I just don't know what day that will be. I don't rule out that it will be this year."