With more and more children taking an interest in golf, many new junior golf programs and facilities have been created across both the UK and the World to enable youngsters to become involved. Junior golfers need to be encouraged both by their parents and by the golf academy or golf pro they learn from. Its important that golf is shown as an exciting and enjoyable pass time and the rewards of hitting a fantastic drive are as great as scoring a goal on the football pitch, but your kids need to know this. In the UK the national sport is football and kids all over the country are out in the streets day in and day out kicking a ball around.
Obviously one of the biggest problems with getting kids involved in golf is they can't just pick up a club and a ball and whack it around in the street (or if they did I'msure the neighbours would have a few things to say). As a parent it is your first job to make golf accessible to your child. Kids will probably lose interest if they have to sit in a car for 40 minutes before a lesson. There's no excuse in the UK for not getting your child to a course or academy, we are all surrounded by golf (you just have to open your eyes a bit). Make sure you find them somewhere local, somewhere you can get them to in a few minutes. If it is somewhere local you'll be more willing to take them for lessons or to play on a regular basis.
Remember, though, if taking children to driving ranges or golf courses, try to take them when they are less busy. Trying to learn in front of large crowds, or being pressured by other golfers to "hurry up" can quickly put your child off and you'll have trouble getting them to pick up a club again. Why not buy a practice net for your back garden. Practice nets can be picked up from as little as £20 and can easily fit into even the smallest of gardens. If that's not for you then pick up a putting machine and set it up in your child's bedroom.
Children learn by imitation, so watching others play golf is a great way for them to improve. Let them watch a PGA event on the television. Its amazing how a child's interest is sparked when they see the pro's in action (especially if the pro is rather "cool", such as Tiger Woods or Michelle Wie). The real trick is to help and encourage your child without pushing them and applying pressure. The main focus for junior golf is to keep it fun and interesting anyway you can. If your child enjoys playing golf, they will naturally want to develop their skills further.
By: Jerry Newham