Golf is fun at any age! Sadly, however, it is often thought of as an elitist sport reserved for old men or simply a leisure activity one takes up in retirement. Nothing could be further from the truth. These days more and more girls are taking up the game and, thanks to Tiger Woods, kids from all walks of life and socio-economic backgrounds are trying the game at an early age; Tiger started at age two.
Golf is more than a mere sport or leisure activity for ‘seasoned’ citizens. The game emphasizes social skills such as good sportsmanship, honesty and integrity. We all know that skills that are developed and encouraged in youth often pay dividends for a lifetime. There is no other sport that honours the rules, and fair-play, more than the game of golf. “Play it as it lies” is my favourite of the 34 rules in golf. How often in life are we tempted to nudge the ball to our favour while no one is looking. Golf also teaches some of life’s hardest lessons such as: ‘We don’t always get our way’. Just ask any weekend duffer about the emotional roller coaster ride during a round of 18 holes; you know who you are, Bill.
I can think of no other activity that creates as much opportunity as the game of golf. Whether it be bonding with Mum and Dad for nine holes on Sunday afternoon, a golf scholarship to college or university, or a business contact made on the links that helped “to close the deal”. Indeed, golf can be a “leg up” to good fortune and opportunity.
Golf is not an easy game. It takes time to perfect a good golf swing. Thus, the earlier one takes up the game the better. Most of the fine players we see on television or at our local golf club have been well coached and have been playing and practicing for many years. That said, I believe anyone, (at any age), with average athletic ability can become a good golfer. With a little time and patience, some study and hard work, golf can be enjoyed at any age!