Some people might find it weird, some others will understand it, and again others might have done exactly what I’m trying to achieve: I bought my little 3-year old daughter her first own golf set.
She didn’t ask for it (she’s currently more asking for a horse actually) and she never expressed much interest in playing golf at all. Yes, she used my clubs from time to time when daddy practiced chipping in the backyard, and yes, she was quite keen to play when we hit the range the other day, but in every case I was more or less the trigger.
Sure, I never forced her to hold a club but as said, she never actively asked to play the game at all.
As a keen golfer with a clear picture that this is THE perfect family sport, I’m however interested to get her interested, too. What I will do for the rest of this and definitely next season is to take her with me to some range sessions for her to see what daddy is doing there and that other people are doing pretty much the same.
She knows what playing golf is, that you have some clubs with which you swing and that you try to get that little white ball in a small hole in the ground. Mommy is doing some fancy fitness stuff and daddy hits white balls around a field…
With 3 years it is way too early to properly start playing I believe. But what I learned from other parents and some people I talked to at clubs in my area, is that it indeed makes sense to start at the age of 4 years, even when it’s just very basic sessions to get a feeling for a ball and the necessary force and speed. With 5 years and beyond, kids are usually mentally and physically eqipped enough to understand rules, training advice and corrective measures in case one is doing something in an incorrect or even unhealthy way.
I’d be very interested to learn how you did it, when your kids started and how you got your children’s interest to keep up with this difficult sport even in times when struggle was more surfacing than success. I remember those days when I started at the age of 18, and I hated these days. Would love to learn from your experiences if I may.
Quickly on the equipment itself: When it comes to youth golf clubs there are basically two manufacturers I would go with. There is US Kids Golf and there is Wilson’s Prostaff JGI.
From a quality perspective I sense there is very little difference. All clubs come in shorter sizes, lighter material, thinner heads and more flexible shafts. Both brands offer a fairly easy to comprehend color system that is translating the child’s size and age into a golf set that fits and suits the needs in that particular age – irrespective of playing abilities – up to a point the next sized set would be more suitable. It’s just that there is more choice with US Kids, meaning there are smaller gaps between the age/size clusters. For US Kids Golf there are not less than eleven size variants available, while for Wilson it’s just three.
This obviously means with Wilson you are more likely in a situation where the clubs won’t quite fit anymore after the child has outgrown those for a bit but in US Kids terms, you just wouldn’t stop buying new golf clubs every now and then as there is so many upgrade possibilities available.
Sure, nobody forces you to update every step possible, but we all know ourselves, don’t we. My basement is full of golf clubs and I’m sure you own some, too.
Even though I went for Wilson in the end, I really like the US Kids Golf motto: “The mission of U.S. Kids Golf is to help kids have fun learning the lifelong game of golf and encourage family interaction that builds lasting memories”
That’s exactly what I’m after really…