Youth Golf Lessons – Enjoyable or Competitive?

My latest reading in Sport Psychology for Peak Performance was focused on youth and motivation in sports. This reading was of great interest because it brought me back to my days as a golf instructor in Houston, TX only a few years ago. I was teaching some of the most prominent junior golfers in the area, with a lot of potential!

I was just a young coach trying to learn my way and how to teach lessons when I began experiencing parents that would be hyper critical of their childs performance. They did not realize that being critical of their childs technique or performance provides a very slippery slope that will not only lead to holding their child back in development but also ruining the fun for the child and them ultimately wanting to quit.

The most popular reason children give for signing up for youth sport is to have FUN! Parents often try to relive their childhood dreams and passions through their kids, which tends to ruin the childs passion in the end. There are a few things a parent or youth golf coach can do to increase the chances their child develops in golf and has fun doing it:

1. De emphasize the importance of winning junior-golf-instructions
2. Positive Reinforcement
3. Encouragement
4. Sound technical instruction

Although I do not have kids of my own, I would strongly suggest hiring a qualified professional to work with your child. Not only will it keep your relationship strong with your child, it will also speed up the golf development with your child.

Remember, do you research before signing your child up for youth golf lessons! Just because they have a certification next to their name, doesn’t mean they are qualified!

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