Ok, we've decided to get our child some golf clubs and we're gonna get them to the range.
How do I ensure the clubs fit him/her?
Don't do what many parents do and go out and buy a set of clubs. Go to the local driving range. Find out where the used clubs are and find one or two irons, say a seven or an eight iron that fits your child. Fit, you say? What does that mean? Just like you would choose a club that comfortably fits between your hands and the ground as you take a golf club in your hands, it should be the same for your child. As they stand in an athletic stance, feet shoulder length apart, bending at the waste, comfortably the club's grip should rest about midway in their stomach area. Like so... (see picture above)
Again, don't worry about the clubs you find. The objective is to get the child a club that they can swing without falling over or that will stick 'em in the ribs because they are choking up too much. Aaaanddd if it could be bright purple for girls or Ricky Fowler orange that would be ideal.... no, just kidding.
Most likely, as you turn around from the clubs, you'll see the counter with the baskets of balls stacked up. You choose the size basket/bucket that you want and head on out there. Choose an area where you won't bother the other golfers if possible and ensure you talk to your family about safety with the swinging of the club and walking around the mat areas, etc. It ruins the day when someone gets bonked on the head with a golf club, trust me.
Just go out there and let your child watch you take your stance, grip, posture and hit a few balls yourself. Don't worry about your swing or success, just show them the general way to do that. Oh, yeah, talk to them about the target you are aiming at so they can also become target-directed. Now, let them do the same. Again, don't worry about the exact way in which they grip the club or, even, swing it. Just let them swing at the ball until they are so frustrated that they want to stop. Let them do that. Enough is enough. If they love it and want to hit more, let 'em if you have the time.
This should be enough for day one. We'll talk about follow on, next.
Not sure you've been able to see what Golf From the Heart, (GFtH) L3C (Click) is all about, but, one of the objectives has been to join with other ministries in golf. Thankfully, GFtH has recently been able to partner with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Golf in order to assist in recruiting for their Gamedays and to help continue the connection with the young golfers and family members to assist in the growth of their golf game and their "game of life" as we say.
We have seen clearly over the past 25 years that ministries are doing wonderfully in reaching out to golfers with the gospel through events, tournaments, local and regional group engagements. One of the challenging areas relative to these events has been how to continue the engagement, ie, get them into small groups or huddles and continue to help them grow in their faith. This is essential. We are partnering with FCA Golf to do just that.
How, you might ask.
We will do our best to promote the events and maintain contact with those that have heard of the Gameday in a PGA, Champions or Web.com Tour location and, especially those who attend the Gameday. Through close coordination with FCA Golf and developing connections/relationships with local FCA leaders, we hope to encourage the youngsters and their families to connect with their local FCA. Not only this, but, we will maintain an engagement with them through Social Media and messaging.
This will take the form of regularly automated messages connecting the young golfers with local activities that will foster their game and life. Additionally, we will encourage them through video's from respected members of the golf community that will provide tips on improving their game as well as solidifying their Christian walk.
We are initiating this program at the Waste Management Phoenix Open and will be communicating with all of the kids and parents that have expressed interest in the Gameday, January 30, 2018. We will attend the event and post pictures, video's and Social Media Live events to make the event valuable and more enjoyable to all.
Please pray with us regarding these efforts as we continue to "give the gospel through golf."
To join Gameday at the Waste Management Phoenix Open, click here; https://tinyurl.com/GFtH2018-10
So you've decided your child or children should play golf. Good choice, by the way, in our humble opinion.
How do we begin?
In the old days you went to Country Club and handed them over to the Club Pro and paid out the ying yang, bought a junior membership in "The Club" and continued to pay the big bucks for your child to hang out at the course every day charging lunches and sodas and his/her buddies' sodas as well when they put it on your account. Those days are pretty much gone unless you're in the Country Club set. If not, here's seven ways to introduce your children to golf and NOT starve while doin' it......
Find a First Tee program in your local area
1. Take your child/children to the local driving range ensure you get a seven or eight iron that the kid can swing back and forth without falling over. Buy a bucket of balls and place them in the hitting stall and let them have at it. Not necessary or overloaded instruction. Just let 'em hit some balls and see how they react. If they hit a few fairly well and, generally, enjoy themselves then you have a chance. If they miss it more than they hit it and get bored with it quickly, you may not have a golfer in the family, but, hey at least you tried.
2. For the child that hits is fairly well and had a good time, the next step is to get him/her a little instruction from someone who knows what they're doing. Not Uncle Joe because he has played go1lf for three to five years and "knows how to play". No, don't go there. Find a First Tee program in your local area and find out from them who the better golf instructors are for children and contact that teacher for an introductory lesson.
3. Negotiate a fair deal with the instructor. No one learns the golf swing in one session or in just a few sessions. It's probably a good idea to get a package of ten or so lessons. A good rate for that would be $30 - $40 per lesson or just a bit higher. Each lesson should be a half-hour as the children have fairly short attention spans and most don't like hitting ball after ball on the driving range.
4. Take time to bring your child back to the driving range and hit balls together once or twice a week. Ensure you take them to the practice putting green as well. Provide your child a very basic putting grip and show them how you putt. They will develop their own putting grip and style. Then, let 'em enjoy themselves. Recommend you challenge 'em to a few competitions. The kids love that. Don't relish in beating them and don't be too sad when they beat you. Lol.
5. Get 'em on the golf course and let 'em experience playing a few holes. Just, again, let 'em hit the ball anyway they want to. Don't burden them with instructions on their swing or the rules just yet. Let the instructor work on their swing during their instruction periods. Don't hound the kid about etiquette, but mention about being respectful of others while playing, keeping reasonably quiet, don't step in anyone's putting line and, certainly, no grab-ass on the golf course. (did I just write that?)
6. Set up a simple chipping area in your backyard. After the pro gives them a lesson on chipping, identify a safe space in your back yard that allows the child to hit balls to practice. This may be a good place to use wiffle balls or soft-type balls so the windows aren't broken.
7. Golf is a great game for our kids, but, kids will stay with the game longer if they have a buddy their own age who also likes the game. If their current friends don't play, try to ask the instructor if he/she has other kids of similar age and ability for them to meet and play with in the future. This friendship has a chance of lasting for a long time.
This is just seven things to get your child into the game. There are more things to consider and we'll relate those to you in subsequent posts and our ebook on the same subject.
See you next time....
When considering sports for your kids, check out these 8 reasons your child should be playing golf.
Why golf you might say?
Playing golf is a great way to:
8. Enjoy the outdoors: Playing golf gives young people an opportunity to spend a few hours in the fresh air. We all know how important that is these days.
7. They develop lifelong friendships: Interaction with others allows young people to develop social skills. It also facilitates mentoring relationships in a safe environment.
6. Practice personal responsibility: Regardless of the outcome, when playing there is no blaming your teammates for what happens..
5. Learn to manage your emotions: Playing golf closely parallels real life as one experiences the highs and lows of the game. The range of experience, from birdies to triple bogeys, rewards a young person's ability to manage one's emotions, maintain a positive outlook and focus on the shot at hand.
looking for a lifetime activity for your child, place golf at the top of your list!!
4. Appreciate diversity: Golf is a game that can be played for a lifetime by anyone regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, size or skill level.
3. Learn etiquette: Playing golf places an emphasis on etiquette. In golf players govern themselves and fellow competitors.
2. Spend time with family: Golf is a game that encourages family participation.
1. Develop healthy habits for life: Playing golf is a sport that helps young people get off the couch. When you play golf, walking the golf course and carrying your bag, a 150-pound person burns 350 calories and walks more than 10,000 steps.
So, looking for a lifetime activity & sport for your children, place playing golf at the top of your list!!
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