How do we get more eight year-olds playing golf?

How do we get more 8 year-olds playing golf?

There are two things I need to make clear: I love Twitter. Second, I have not had my morning coffee.

Twitter is amazing. One never knows when conversations, debates or contentious issues will emerge. Last winter I recall issues of slow play on the PGA Tour which allowed me to converse back and forth with gifted golf writer, Lorne Rubenstein. Last night, during the Saturday Night Live 40th Anniversary special, Twitter awoke with a conversation sparked by Robert Thompson about youth engagement in golf. I chimed in with a tweet to the effect that PGA Tour participation by Canadian pros are likely only having regional influences, the example being, how many kids in Saskatchewan have picked up the game of golf as a result of the success of Graham DeLaet? It’s an important question and even this morning there remains some very good and interesting ideas being shared.

To my second point, about coffee; it’s early and this is not at all thought out but it’s a concept to share for your consideration. Most eight year-olds in Canada play hockey. Most NHL hockey players like to play golf. Is there any way we can get Golf Canada to partner with Hockey Canada on a campaign that can introduce kids to golf as an activity that can complement their interests in hockey? Getting some NHL players as spokespeople to share – possibly grounded in research – why golf can help support hockey development is one pillar to my idea. Second, when kids are eight years old and playing house league hockey can they be given a chance to get a free golf lesson and free round with their parent or mentor on August 8 (after all, let’s really market this ‘eight’ theme). Third, and as a parallel to this, can we market rising golf professionals in Canada who can share their passion for hockey and how hockey influenced and shape their path to golf?

A friend of mine once told me there are no original ideas now and that we’re merely riffing ideas of the past. He may be right, again, the coffee has not kicked in and I have not done any research on this. This morning, I’m just an idea guy!

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3 thoughts on “How do we get more eight year-olds playing golf?

  1. Great question. I am not sure we can break the hockey monopoly in Canada, but it would be nice to try. No matter what direction you decide to go, I suggest that keeping it fun for the entire time on the links is a great start.

    Cheers
    Jim

  2. Thanks, Jim
    The dialogue on Twitter was interesting and I’m simply wondering if we can effectively tap into the primary extracurricular for eight year-olds, boys and girls. Complement versus compete is my philosophy here.

    Take care, Mike

  3. Mike

    Interesting ideas! I might need some time to think about this. For myself (growing up in Saskatchewan), golf and hockey went hand in hand. Hockey in the winter, and hanging out at the local muni all summer. However, most kids (and parents of those kids) would consider their kid making a career of hockey more of a possibility than them making a career of golf. So a lot more measures were taken to improve their hockey skills and education as opposed to golf. Some of us still grew passionate about golf but some didn’t, I suspect because of a lack of support or inability to see a future in it because of the bigger focus on hockey.

    Not sure if this helps, but thought I’d share my experience as a kid playing golf and hockey in Saskatchewan. Interestingly enough, I played hockey against Graham DeLaet! He was a Weyburb Red Wing and I was Yorkton Terrier. He was also a great hockey player.

    Cheers!
    Josh

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