By Bruce Meadows
Why should kids play golf ???
I came across the following information online recently, thoughts of a father and the effect junior golf has had on their lives and the lives of those around them and thought it might be enjoyable, possibly helpful for parents and kids.
“During the last seven years, I have watched my son and his friends grow up in the world of Junior Golf. This amazing sport has brought out the best in these young men, and has taught them so many valuable life lessons. I am forever impressed, in particular to the following ten qualities that I have observed my son develop as a bi-product of the great game of golf.
- Humility and Respect
Golf requires that you show courtesy to others and that you communicate with respect. In the Junior Golf tournaments across the country, it is well stated that good sportsmanship must be exhibited at all times and that all play is ended with an exchange of a hand shake.
When the tournament schedule states “Tee time is at 9:00,” this means that you are to be on the tee box at 8:55. If you are late to the tee box, you are automatically disqualified, no questions asked. While this can be a tough lesson to learn, it is one that works brilliantly and has instilled in my son the importance of being on time for not only every tournament but every event in life.
Golf is a game of honor, and recognizing that a transgression has occurred and taking responsibility for the transgression is a part of the game.
This one act instills integrity and fairness to all concerned.
Golf balls and clubs are very hard and dangerous instruments, and one of the first and foremost rules of golf is safety. My son has been instructed again and again to not take practice swings in the direction of another person, not to swing clubs when someone else is walking by, and never to hit into a group playing in front of him. These rules of safety have filtered into other aspects of his life, including biking, swimming, and safety in the home.
Golf requires an amazing amount of concentration, and quiet is required at all times on the golf course. While this takes practice for young kids, it is a life skill that teaches constraint and respect for others.
The night before and the morning of a tournament, my son sits quietly and mentally and visually plays the course. This skill is teaching him how to “see the end in mind,” which is key to goal achievement.
- Problem Solving
Rain, wind, trees, multiple sand traps, and deep rough can make for a challenging day of tournament play. These are a normal part of golf and can be an amazing opportunity for clever problem solving and personal growth.
Golf is a tough sport. It requires that you not only know the physics of hitting the ball (and what club to use when) but requires intense mental and emotional concentration. Silencing the inner critic after a “bad shot” is crucial to regaining clear focus, which is an advanced skill to learn but one that can take you very far in life.
- Practice, Persistence, and Listening
In golf, instant success is very rare. My son has become a great golfer through daily practice, persistence, and through being open to listening to his mentors. In life, it is important to know that we rarely reach our goal in one “stroke.” By practicing, making corrections along the way, being open to coaching, and being persistent, we can tackle most of life’s tough challenges.
One of the most important life lessons my son has learned from golf is to be gracious and respectful to adults. At the end of each tournament, he and his competitors thank and shake the hands of the tournament chairmen and follow this up with a handwritten note of thanks
Operation 36 at Napa GC
Napa Golf Course pro David Knox has announced that his course is offering the Operation 36 program.
Operation 36 is a long-term coaching program designed to progress golfers towards shooting par or better for 9 holes.
All new Operation 36 golfers start in Division 1 which is 25 yards from the green, and golfers advance to further division starting yardages as they progress through their journey towards par or better.
This play-based program is designed for golfers of all ages, and Knox, Napa’s PGA Director of Instruction, will host monthly Operation 36 matches to allow participants to play 9 holes in an attempt to advance to the next Operation 36 division starting yardage.
Advantages of Operation 36 include allowing golfers to actually play a full 9 holes on the course while other programs have players spending time on the driving range; a beginner can finish 9 holes in 90 minutes or less and doesn’t have to worry about holding up other players; goals are achievable and based on a golfer’s skill level, and allows them to see success and build confidence.
Napa Golf Course is offering exclusive Operation 36 9-hole greens fees and cart fees for David’s participants to practice year-round on the course to prepare for their next monthly match.
The program is also being offered at various courses in the area, including Tayman Park GC in Healdsburg.
David will host a winter-series of Operation 36 Challenge Matches on the following four Sunday afternoons: Nov. 24, Dec. 15, Jan. 19 and Feb. 9.
For additional information, call David at 916-533-4108.
Golf outing offered . . .
Oakmont GC LPGA pro Jessica Reese Quayle has announced her latest golf trip, this one to Marival Armony Luxury Resort in Punta de Mita.
The outing is scheduled March 3-10, 2020. Non-golfer price is $1,989 per person and the golf package is an extra $329.
The package includes a non-stop flight from Oakland on a private charter plane to Puerta Vallarta; transportation by charter bus to the resort from the airport; seven nights at the Marival Armony Luxury Resort with all meals and premium drinks included.
The golf option includes three rounds of golf, green fees, cart and range balls plus roundtrip transportation. Courses include the Greg Norman-designed Litibu Golf Club, Flamingos Golf Club and El Tigre Golf Club. Additional rounds are available at discount prices.
For additional details, contact Jessica at [email protected] or call 707-321-9791.
What are your golfing favorites?
From time to time, when I wrote a weekly golf column for the Press Democrat, I would ask readers to take part in a very unofficial survey.
I wanted to know – and wanted our readers to have some knowledge – about what local golfers like or don’t like about golf in our area.
It’s been a while since I did this survey, so I figured I would toss it out to readers of my online column, GOLF 707.
I would like to know what you think, and local golf courses and golf-related businesses would no doubt like to have some idea what local golfers think, too. Those courses and business who get good reviews can continue to do what they’re doing, and those that do not show up on our survey might want to take a look at how they can do things a little better.
So check out the following list and let me know your thoughts. I would prefer an email to [email protected] so I can compile a list and keep a running vote total.
And while you are handing out praise, feel free to take a shot at golf courses, businesses or pros or whatever you feel need some improvement.
I would appreciate you including your name and city with your email if possible. And if there is a category you feel I missed, feel free to create one. You can respond to the categories that interest you, but respond to all of them if you wish.
Here’s the list:
Best Par 3
Best Par 4
Best Par 5
Best 18-hole Course
Best 9-hole Course
Best 19th Hole
Best Pro Shop
Friendliest, most helpful Pro Shop Staff
Best Golf Instructor
Best Junior Program
Best Women’s Program
Best Senior Program
Best Golf Course Food, Drink
Best Driving Range
Best “Bang for your Buck”
Best Practice Facility (putting green, chipping green, etc.)
Best Golf Shop (well-stocked, sales, etc.)
Best Golf Repair
Best Maintained Course
What’s new with Jessica ???
“This fall has been really exciting for me with two great trips and the purchase of a new teaching aid,” reports LPGA pro Jessica Reese Quayle. “Mid-October I attended the PGA Teaching Summit in Temecula, it was a continuing education seminar for teachers. There were some wonderful speakers like Chris Como (Tiger’s Coach), Josh Gregory (Patrick Reed’s Coach), and Jamie Mulligan (Patrick Cantlay’s Coach). My favorite portion of the seminar was the Q&A with one of my favorite golfers, Freddy Couples.
“My other adventure took me back to Austin for the Women’s Golf Alumni Weekend at the University of Texas. The new Hall of Honor opened it’s doors for the alumni of the golf team and we had a private party in the stadium the night before the Texas vs. Kansas State Football game. Visiting with teammates, friends, and the current team made for a wonderful weekend. Showing my eldest son where I became a collegiate All-American was hopefully something he will remember. Maybe he will let me fix his grip now that he has seen my achievement plaques!
“Lastly, this October I purchased a training aid for my students. It’s a Flightscope X3 Launch Monitor, the newest technology with amazing short game capabilities. Being able to use this machine for pitching and chipping has been a great resource. In the past I could only capture swing speeds above 50mph, now I can get all speeds including putting. This is valuable for any type of lesson or club fitting.
Let’s hear from you . . .
Thanks for your comments, questions and suggestions. I appreciate getting them and would like to get as many as possible. If you have information about anything golf-related, including upcoming clinics, activities, tournaments or sales, let me know. And if you have questions, complaints or compliments about golf in our area, I want to hear them.
If you have a golfer – pro or amateur — you know who you think would make an interesting story, tell me about it and I will take it from there. Having trouble with your game? Let me know what it is and I’ll try to get an answer for you from a local pro.
We would be proud to include you as one of our sponsors – thanks to Bill Carson at Wine Country Golf for his continued support – so if you care to get some details about being a sponsor of GOLF 707, email me at [email protected]