Over the course of this project, I have learned more about the game that I enjoy so much. It has always brought me great pleasure to be able to pass on my knowledge and skills of golf onto others that are willing to learn, but may not have the same access that I experienced. Prior to this project, I would help teach my friends how to improve their games or even get an idea of how to get started in general, but now I realize that I can broaden my scope on who I impact with my talent and knowledge.
I have learned that there is a strong motion going on in the golf world to better educate the younger generation about the game of golf, so that it continues to grow. Golf is obviously an extremely popular sport or activity for older people who may be physically incapable to keep playing more involved sports such as football and basketball. But it is not, however, as popular in the younger generations, mostly because the younger generation does not have proper exposure to golf.
My genius hour project would ideally fix this problem. Its main goal is to provide the equipment and proper instruction to younger children. My idea of getting schools actually involved with this project would need to include a convincing presentation to those schools. I think that I, personally, would be a great person to lead these presentations to the schools and I could even bring along my teacher that I learned everything from.
I could demonstrate to the schools how easy the game is to learn and the benefits it can provide going on in life. I really think that if I was exposed to a presentation about growing the game of golf in younger children when I was in elementary school, it would have peaked my interest as well as many of my friends’ interest. This is something that I really want to look into continuing after this EDIT 2000 class has concluded. At the very least, I will continue to try to share my knowledge of the game, whether it be with my friends or younger kids trying to find a different game than what most people play. This class has really made me realize my potential for affecting this cause and for that I am grateful.
I continued to research different discussions and articles about growing the game of golf using technology, especially for younger generations. My prior research involved different teaching methods that would be most beneficial for teaching the game for the most part. And my prior discussion generally revolved around my experiences with golf teaching and technology when I was younger. In this post, I dig into some more information to continue my Genius Hour Project.
One article I came across included “Embrace technology or get left behind” in reference to future golf teaching strategies. A KPMG Golf Business Forum meeting was held at the birthplace of golf, St. Andrews, where the different uses for technology growing the game of golf and the excitement around it were discussed. One particular argument noted that golf was too slow reacting the the increased use of technology in other sports, and needed to catch up with the times to not get left behind. Most of what they mention involves computer chips and programming in the golf balls and other equipment, but obviously in my scenario this would not be economically feasible for a school.
The most encouraging information I discovered in my further research involved multiple apps that are available to anyone with a smart phone that provide an avenue for users to evaluate and analyze their own swing, while also providing them tips and instructions based on what they’re doing. One of these apps is from V1 Sports, who specializes in motion analysis and digital media technology. Their app allows you to record your swing and send it to analysts that will provide input to help you fix issues with your golf game. This simple technology use could provide great benefits to younger generations and their school sin learning how to play the game of golf.
For my fourth Genius Hour post, I decided to interview one of my friends who also enjoys the game of golf, Wade Phillips. Wade and I grew up together playing all kinds of sports, including golf. He offers an interesting perspective to this project because he didn’t play golf in high school like I did, but during all the summers growing up, he would ask me to teach him how to play when he was in between baseball and football season.
Me teaching Wade the game of golf ties directly in to my Genius Hour project. He had his own set of clubs and access to a golf course, but did not have any access to a golf teacher like I did. So, we would go out to the course and I would instruct him on how to swing the club properly and perform the other various tasks in the difficult game of golf. In fact, from the summer going into sophomore year of high school, we were able to lower his average score by more than 15 strokes. This improvement in his game allowed him to enjoy more and we now play almost weekly together.
When I interviewed him about this project, he thought it was very intriguing and agreed with me that the game of golf needs to be expanded to younger kids growing up that are limited to just a few sports. He mentioned similar ideas that I have thought about before, but also mentioned the idea of providing instructional videos (similar to my SnapGuide) that could be readily accessible to anyone looking to learn about the game of golf. He noted that when he was a lot younger, he would have been very motivated to use simple instructions like this to get ahead in his game.
The most important thing he said was that he was fortunate enough to have me around to teach him how to play during high school. He thought that if I hadn’t been around to teach him how to play, he probably wouldn’t have any interest in the game whatsoever, so that made me feel pretty good. But everyone out there doesn’t have a friend they grew up with that played golf and knew a lot about it, which makes it all the more important that we need to discover new and creative ways to introduce the younger generation to the game when they don’t have the means or access to it.
- Owens, D., & Bunker, L. K. (1989). Teaching golf : steps to success. Champaign, Ill. : Leisure Press, c1989.
- Bender, M., Vandenberg, d. C., & Jozwiak, D. (2014). Teaching Teachers Golf schools with guest instructors are a win-win. PGA Magazine (1044-1204), 95(10), 98-103.
- This article would be beneficial to my Genius hour because it discusses the different ways to give people access to an expensive instructor/nationally known teacher, without having to pay the full cost. This would directly tie in to the different ways to expose younger kids to the game of golf that may not be capable of doing it on their own.
- Lynch, J. (2015). Teaching Teachers. PGA Magazine (1044-1204), 96(9), 122-126.
- This article discusses the proper teaching methods for golf teaching professionals, but it could also be used for a plan to educate younger kids. It essentially teaches the importance of the short game (putting and chipping), and the proper form and techniques to use for it.
- GROWING THE GAME. (2013). PGA Magazine (1044-1204), 94(2), 4-7.
- This article talks about the commitment the PGA has made to growing the game in today’s younger generation by illustrating their different promotion programs to grow the game. Most of their programs are aimed towards children in particular, but there is also mention of growing the game for everyone else too, not just dependent on age.
- Grayson, R. (2012). Growing the Game with a Game for Juniors. PGA Magazine (1044-1204), 93(11), 32-34.
keywords used: “growing the game of golf,” “teaching golf,” and “golf instruction”
For my second post about my Genius hour project, I looked into some of my fellow classmates’ ideas and compared them to mine. I thought that this could potentially help me in improving my idea some more by using some outside minds. For example, Alex Sovchen’s idea is to teach students the importance of high school sports. We basically have the same concept, but mine is obviously more narrowly focused on the sport of golf, rather than all high school sports. We both believe that an active, hands-on approach is far and away the best strategy to inform these kids about the importance of these sports, although for golf it is much more difficult.
I did some research into the importance of the game of golf and came across this poem: http://golfpoet.com/2009/01/18/the-importance-of-golf-a-sentimental-view-from-the-past/ It basically illustrates the poet’s passion for the game, but also hammers home the point that golf can last you a lifetime. It’s not like most other sports, where you will never play it again after high school. It is something that you can play until you old and physically unable to.
I’m still thinking on how exactly I can make the game of golf more accessible to younger and less privileged kids, which is something I plan to discuss with my former golf teacher from high school, Tom Ness. He is ranked as a Top 50 golf instructor in the country, so he would obviously be a solid source of information on this topic. I will definitely need to get in contact with Tom soon as he will be a very valuable resource to my Genius Hour project.
Also, I found a great follow on twitter for this topic: Ted Eleftheriou, whose twitter name is @CreateGolfers. His title is the Director of Golf Program Development for the PGA, so he would be a great source of information for me.
My question involves what technology can we incorporate into our school systems to potentially give younger, underprivileged kids the opportunity to learn about the game of golf. I was fortunate and blessed growing up as my dad was able to provide me with the needed equipment to learn how to play the game. Now, I want to find a way to give every young person this chance.
In high school, I used to get lessons from a golf pro at a local country club. He had all kinds of technology in his office that we used to analyze my swing and game, included a camera that had slow motion capabilities as well as an advanced computer program that would measure different angles in my swing. Not only was it beneficial to my golf game, but it was also one of the more interesting topics I learned about all through my school years. I think that if I could get this technology into a elementary school, middle school, or high school, more students would be interested in golf.
I would use this technology to create different competitions for the younger kids, which would also allow for instruction at the same time. The technology would build an interest of golf in the kids that they weren’t getting previously, which should greatly increase participation.
The Professional Golf Association (PGA) has been trying to grow the game of golf for years now, as a small percentage of young people choose to play it over more popular sports like football, soccer, and baseball. They’ve tried many things mostly involving free contests, but from what I’ve seen, there has not been any attempt to incorporate technology into their marketing scheme. Young kids nowadays are all about technology, so it would be wise to use it to increase interest in the game of golf.
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