Starting a new activity of any kind can be a bit overwhelming. There is a whole new language to learn. There is new equipment to buy. There are new like-minded people to meet. Golf is no different. Once that initial learning curve has been overcome, however, the new possibilities and new friends that come with it bring a level of enjoyment and satisfaction that make the challenging start all worthwhile.
Michele Trimarche, a PGA/LPGA teaching professional at Alpine Country Club in Demarest, N.J., offers helpful tips particularly for women interested in taking up golf for the first time.
The National Golf Foundation reports that nearly 45% of the beginning golfers in the United States are women. Women are turning to the sports for a combination of reasons: fitness, a leisure activity with family and friends, and to conduct business. Many women, however, often have important questions on how to get started, particularly with regard to equipment, practice, lessons, and etiquette.
The first stage of learning golf, with no experience or background, can sometimes be intimidating and overwhelming. Basic knowledge on how to get started can help develop confidence and make an intimidating place much more comfortable and fun. The following tips can help you get off to a good start.
- Take lessons from a professional golf instructor – Begin by taking group lessons with other women or take a minimum of six private lessons from a professional instructor. Why a professional? Starting from day one, you will avoid developing bad habits and techniques that will stay with you for years. Consider lessons from a female professional if that is the right for you.
- Purchase clubs that fit you – Purchase the correct set of clubs for your height and build. Having equipment that fits you is a critical factor in developing good technique. A professional golf instructor will be able to fit you with equipment that will help you learn correctly from the start.
- Set goals – Map out a game plan for achieving your goals and learn how to make the process of getting there as much as fun reaching them.
- Practice, practice, practice – Go to your local driving range twice a week if at all possible. Create a training schedule that consists of drills and information that the professional taught you in the lessons. Always finish with a couple great shots to leave with a positive feeling. Practice with a partner or with your friend and entertain each other.
- Play at least two rounds per month – During your first two years in golf it is best to play for practice rather than for a score. Find a woman-friendly facility and join a nine-hole golf league when you feel you are ready. Play during the slow times on the golf course, if possible, to avoid the feeling of being rushed.
- Dress appropriately and comfortably – What a great reason to get yourself an outfit and cute shoes. Leave the denim at home – many courses don’t allow jeans or tank tops, and require shorts to be a proper length. Normally shorts 2 inches above the knees are safe. Some facilities require a collared shirt. It is best to call ahead and find out the dress code before your lessons.