It’s early January — a time when avid Canadian golfers are imagining a smooth new swing that will finally make this year the one that pulls it all together. But are kids thinking about golf? Do they share that same passion for the perfect swing?
For a junior golfer, the answer is likely no. As far as Golf Canada is concerned — that’s not a problem.
As the governing body of the sport in this country, Golf Canada’s focus towards junior golf stems from participation numbers. Priority lies with introducing the sport to Canadian youth who otherwise may not receive the opportunity to experience the game at a young age. In the end, what’s most important is the well-being of the child.
Across the country, golf’s industry leaders are doing their best to ensure that golf is an available option in promoting children’s health and fitness.
Beginning at the top of the chain, the National Golf Course Owner’s Association (NGCOA) is offering the Take a Kid to the Course Week once again in 2015. This nation-wide initiative offers free golf and sometimes more to children under the age of 16 who are accompanied by a paying adult. This year’s week will run from July 6–12. More details are available on the website.
At the grassroots level, Golf in Schools brings an educational curriculum to 300,000 students annually. The program — offered to both elementary and high schools — is delivered by teachers through the teaching guide and is endorsed by Physical Health Education (PHE) Canada. Those interested in getting Golf in Schools in their community can learn more here.
The delivery of programming by PGA of Canada professionals remains at the forefront of junior golf. With the help of Canada’s junior golf program, CN Future Links, instructors invest in teaching the fundamentals and values of golf through a variety of formats:
- CN Future Links Learn to Play
- CN Future Links Girls Club
- CN Future Links Mobile Clinics
- CN Future Links Girls Club
- CN Future Links Junior Skills Challenge
- CN Future Links Field Trip program
- PGA Junior League Golf delivered by CN Future Links
Golf Canada, in close partnership with the PGA of Canada, is excited to add several new initiatives (coming in 2015) to their base of junior programming:
- Golf in Schools Intermediate program—Spring launch
- Learn to Compete (intermediate golf program)—Spring launch
- Long-Term Player Development Guide—version 2.0—February launch
- Two new initiatives, linking students to golf courses—Spring launch
For those looking for a competitive edge, the Canadian Junior Golf Association recently announced their tournament schedule for 2015. The Maple Leaf Junior Tour has also made their list available online at this link.
Golf Canada’s competitive schedule is available here.
For all things related to junior golf, including news, programs, National Junior Golf Development Centres and course look-up, visit juniors.golfcanada.ca