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Top tips for the junior golfer in your life

Photo of illustration of golf swings

Mike Poe offers tip for developing a love for golf

By Mike Poe | Point of View

Just in time for spring break, the weather is warming up making it the perfect time to try new hobbies with your children. Golf is a fantastic sport to consider introducing your kids to this spring. There’s nothing better than getting out on the green and spending quality time with your family.

If you’re hoping to introduce your little one to golf, consider these tips below:

Start with providing the right tools:
Providing your junior golfer with right equipment will directly impact the child as they begin playing. Whether a club is too long, stiff, or heavy, all those factors will affect their first impression of the game. Make sure they have the right tools, as well as clothing, so they are comfortable during the already-challenging first learning phase.

Avoid busy courses:
Try taking the kids when it’s not crowded or in the evening. That way you don’t have to worry about holding up the group behind you while your child is learning. Many courses offer special times set aside for junior golfers for this reason.

Putting is a great place to start:
Beside the fact that putting is the most crucial aspect to scoring well in golf, it is also the simplest stroke. Kids can usually perform a basic putting stroke and strike the ball. This will build their confidence as they see they can do it.

Save the swing for the finale:
Kids will usually start with a huge swing. Allow children to swing freely at first with whatever comes naturally. Most often, kids will start with a huge swing, nearly knocking themselves over. If they miss the ball, have them take half swings to promote contact and confidence. The thing to watch as far as correcting form is movement of the feet. Kids tend to step around while swinging.

Enjoy the learning phase:
Remind your kids, and yourself, to have fun! Take this time to encourage your child and say, “Great shot!” and if they miss, be sure to say “Nice try!” You might not enjoy splashing your ball into a pond of not return, but for your kids, it may be the best part of the day.

And remember that they don’t want a complicated lecture so to let them move around freely and learn organically.

Editor’s note: Mr. Poe is manager at the Quintero Golf Club.

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