As the calendar shifts to late summer and with school on the horizon, hopefully you’ve been able to get out and enjoy some golf with family, friends and fellow PGA Junior Golf Camp attendees! It’s a wonderful time of the year to create memories, and, of course, get better at playing golf!
But for those junior golfers that may be wondering what to do after their PGA Junior Golf Camp is over – and for those parents not wanting their kids to waste a beautiful day inside – the answer revolves around keeping the game FUN! After all, that’s what playing golf is all about!
We asked PGA Junior Golf Camps Director Rob Noel, PGA, to help answer the “fun” question for us, and we’re glad we did – Rob loves making golf enjoyable for anyone he teaches. As the PGA Director of Instruction for Rob Noel Golf Academy at Money Hill Golf & Country Club in Abita Springs, Louisiana, Rob was the 2014 Gulf States PGA Teacher of the Year and a Golf Magazine Top 100 Teacher in 2015. Translation: He knows his stuff!
Read on for Rob’s three keys to making the game fun post-PGA Junior Golf Camp and all season long!
You’ve got the tools, you’ve got the instruction, and now it’s time to put it to good use – go play some golf!
“I always encourage the young kids’ parents to take them out to the course,” adds Noel. “The parents need to be involved, especially the under-10-year old kids, who might get a little bored on the range. Bringing them out on the course will keep them interested and they’ll have more fun, too.”
Noel also uses a fun song about addressing the ball – which Camp Co-Director Nic Drezins created – during instruction sessions that is easy to rhyme and remember. Continuing to use these types of learning techniques will help kids enjoy the basics and most important parts of their golf swing.
The Golf Course is a Social Hub of Actvity
During the late summer, and even into the fall, golf courses are great spots for fun events. If you’re spending an afternoon playing video games inside or need to find a way to get out of the house, call up your local facility, or the course which hosted your PGA Junior Golf Camp!
“Although golf is a sport first in nature, you also have to make it a social event – especially for those kids who want to be with their friends,” says Noel. “Everyone ends up meeting one another during camp, so there are connections the kids can make and parents can coordinate. It ends up being a great way for the youngsters to establish those friendships and make golf more enjoyable.”
Establish a Reward System
In Noel’s PGA Junior Golf Camps, he and Drezins have a “chip” reward system, in which campers receive a certain number of chips for making a putt, sportsmanship, hitting a good tee shot, and so on.
“It’s a great way to keep them motivated,” says Noel. “The bigger milestones get more chips, but we don’t forget about small, good deeds either – sportsmanship and respect are both big parts of the game.
“At the end of camp, whoever has the most chips receives a grand prize, but everyone gets something. We buy little golf-related trinkets and you wouldn’t believe how that keeps the kids engaged. Finding a way to reward good shots, and good qualities, can go a long way.”
Rob Noel, PGA, is a PGA Director of Instruction at Rob Noel Golf Academy and a Camp Co-Director for PGA Junior Golf Camps in Abita Spring, Lousiana. You can learn more about PGA Junior Golf Camps, held at more than 90 facilities nationwide throughout the summer, by visiting PGAJuniorGolfCamps.com or calling (888) PGA-PLAY.