What's the best age___

big_russ

Challenge Tour Pro
Joined
Apr 2, 2008
Messages
674
Location
PRESTON, LANCASHIRE
Visit site
to take up this wonderful game?

Having an eight year old son who is showing interest in the game and asking when he can "play on a real course", i would be interested in your opinions as to what age is considered to be ideal to be introducing a child to the game. I take him to the range with me once a week but as with most kids concentration is lacking and boredom soon sets in.
When i started playing i was around 12 years old and had lessons from the start and this seemed to suit me.
Although there are certain instances where very young kids show their talent and are considered naturals i personally think that my son does not have control of his swing/club due to lack of strength and therefore feel that this could harm him for the future.(swing faults and confidence)

Over to you guys and your views and experiences are very much appreciated.
 

Boabski

Challenge Tour Pro
Joined
Dec 12, 2007
Messages
738
Location
Scotland
Visit site
my young lad who is 10 is doing the same mate , i take him between the golf range and the practice area at my club so he can hit balls about. as time goes on he seems to be getting better so i am thinking about giving him a go on the course just to keep him interested
 

HomerJSimpson

Hall of Famer
Joined
Aug 6, 2007
Messages
71,300
Location
Bracknell - Berkshire
Visit site
I started at 10 and went to Esher Driving Range (middle of Sandown Park racecourse). They ran a week of lessons (hour per day) on the basics and basically there was a dustbin full of balls and we could stay there until it was empty. Once I had the basics my dad took me on the par 3 course there (longest hole approx 200 yards) and finally progressed to an 18 holer after six months or so.
 

RGuk

Tour Winner
Joined
Aug 19, 2007
Messages
3,437
Visit site
I started miss.juniorRGuk off at about 9. We ventured onto a course after a dozen range sessions then to join the club with me a year ago. Now 10 going on 11, we play nine holes weekly and bought a set of 10-12 y.o. clubs. I'd say a tad early, but as long as boredom doesn't set it, we'll keep it up.
Ideally, I'd like to get her out on her own with friends in the holidays 2 years from now.
 

forefortheday

Tour Rookie
Joined
Jan 16, 2008
Messages
1,481
Location
Liverpool
Visit site
Play with a guy from work and his 12 yr old son quite regularly after work.

Play the back 9 of a local muni during the week and it's always quiet.I enjoy it a lot he's not bad at all and he seems to have a good effect on my game as I spend time helping him enjoy the game rather than worrying about how I'm getting on.

I'm looking forward to taking my daughter out to the range but she's only two so one or two years yet, as long as they enjoy it then go on get them out there I wish my dad had!
 

brendy

Global Moderator
Moderator
Joined
Oct 4, 2007
Messages
12,933
Location
Bangor, Co. Down
Visit site
Hollie was 3 when she got her first proper wedge and putter. She goes up and hits balls whenever I get time to go up myself, shes no rory mcilroy but can hit her wedge around 30 yards. Hopefully she can concentrate and get some sort of a decent handicap when she gets a little bigger, i'll not be pushing her.
 

theeaglehunter

Tour Winner
Joined
Jan 7, 2008
Messages
2,527
Visit site
Who knows? I know a 10 year old boy off of 15 who started at the age of 4 and plays in junior world championships and the Faldo series etc, and that is very young to start but he seems to love the game and has the desire to practice 3 times a week. I can't see a problem with getting an 8 year old started if it is what they want to do. I regret not taking up the game earlier, as according to many people the younger they are the better they learn/ more easily pick things up so if you get the foundations right when they are young (like the 10yr old I mentioned) they will be able to grow into their swing and develop power and be off single figures in know time. As long as you are not forcing them into it any age is fine.
 

Stefano56

Hacker
Joined
Aug 18, 2008
Messages
22
Location
Italy
Visit site
My daughter started at 7, mainly playing on the driving range and putting green.
She started having regular lessons (in a group first, then one2one)at 8, and playing in junior tournaments at 10.
She is now 13, and her hcp is 11.9 - could be much lower if she practiced more than once a week, but the school is more important than golf, by now.
As you can imagine, at 7 or 8 what's really difficult is to be able to maintain their attention for more than 10 minutes.
Also, when she began with competitions I started telling her that I don't mind the result, I just want her to have fun. That relieves a pressure that could be unbearable for a kid.
 

vig

Tour Winner
Joined
Nov 17, 2007
Messages
3,456
Location
west yorkshire
Visit site
I think it depends on the individual.
The younger the better. They must have an interest and not have it pushed on them. As for boredom/attention span. I think any kid, regardless of age would get fed up of hitting balls on the range. Get them on the course asap, once they start hitting shots with something to aim at the excitement levels will rise.

IMO as soon as they can swing a club is old enough.
 

forefortheday

Tour Rookie
Joined
Jan 16, 2008
Messages
1,481
Location
Liverpool
Visit site
Homer,

Good article by the way

To be honest my dad never had the time, he ran a fishmongers for 40 years (and my grandad before him) 13 hours a day 6 days a week all my childhood so he only got sundays off and they usually involved sleep!

Don't get me wrong this is no sob story but sport was something you watched on telly not actually did.

We can thank Mr Woods,or more specifically his ps2 games for my love of golf!

To think I once thought how hard can this be I'm 40 under par...........
 

HomerJSimpson

Hall of Famer
Joined
Aug 6, 2007
Messages
71,300
Location
Bracknell - Berkshire
Visit site
Forefortheday,

I know what you mean. My dad ran a newsagents for years and so was up at 4.00 to go and do the papers and wouldn't get home until about 7 (most newsagents closed about 6 in the late 70's/80's - can anyone remeber when that happened?). He was too knackered really and the only day off he got was Sunday when he shut at 1.00 but he could never be bothered to play or go to the range.

I kind of regret not playing more father/son events before he got the shop and as I got better but you can't turn the clock back. I'm thankful for him getting me started and especially getting me the club so young.
 

RGuk

Tour Winner
Joined
Aug 19, 2007
Messages
3,437
Visit site
f.w.i.w. miniRGuk was on form today. Averaging 130 (140?) with a 21 degree wood (we've put the 15 degree Driver away for a while) she managed three 5's on par 4s on the back nine today.....proving, you don't need to hit it that far if you're just going to make bogeys...
Shame about the 6 putt from just off one green.....(we're not talking about it!! :))
 

viscount17

Money List Winner
Joined
Aug 13, 2007
Messages
8,704
Location
Middle Earth,
Visit site
there are a number of father/son pairs that I see around the course, the kids are usually 9 on up. Most of them are fine but there are some fathers where I would really like to . . .

These are usually fathers who think that they (the father) can play better than they actually do. They push young kids into playing off whites, rubbish them if they miss hit etc
 

HomerJSimpson

Hall of Famer
Joined
Aug 6, 2007
Messages
71,300
Location
Bracknell - Berkshire
Visit site
Think we've all seen fathers like that in all sports. I use to run and referee under 10 through to under 16 football and the problems never came from the kids who just wanted to play. It was always from dads thinking Jonny is the next Ronaldho when he couldn't even string two passes together.

The problem with dads forcing their sons to play off whites etc is that the kid will struggle, become disenchanted and eventually move on. What dad doesn't realise is that this robs the club of potential income from junior (and them adult) membership and the games loses someone that may not be great now but with coaching and nuturing could have been a decent single figure player.
 

DCB

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 6, 2007
Messages
7,732
Location
Midlothian
Visit site
My daughter enjoys going to the range, (well she did until they stopped the Hot Chocolate at the drinks machine) enjoys playing the kids par 3 course at the range and enjoys going round our course on a nice day. The biggest thing now is keeping her enjoying the golf. She wants to hit the ball as far as I do, but thats just not possible, she's not 11 yet but can drive the ball 130-150 depending on conditions.

I think the next step is to get her a couple of lessons from the pro or assistant pro just to refine and reinforce what she has been told already. Next year hopefully she will gain entry to the junior section at the club. There are only a handfull of girls taking part nowadays, but here's hoping she has a couple of other girls joining at the same time. If she ends up not wanting to pay then that will be her decision, but she has been around the club since she was in a rock-a-tot so she's been well brainwashed!
 

TonyN

Money List Winner
Joined
Jan 24, 2008
Messages
6,012
Visit site
I bought my nephew a cheap junior set for christmas(he's 9) and have taken him a few times. To be honest, he's more interested in Lining the balls up neatly on ther matt. And he just doesn't listen to what i tell him. He's not naturally great at sport and i think he finds it hard to concentrate for more than 30 mins(as all kids do) I warm him up, give him easy drills to practice and watch him for a while, but as soon as he see's someone with a driver he wants to watch them.

I think I will leave it a year or two and see if he's keen then.
 
Top