As June comes to an end and July starts, I am honored to have the privilege to coach junior golfers. While many recreational players in Florida are avoiding the hot and humid conditions of the golf course in the summer, a number of my junior students are in involved in leagues and playing in tournaments. They are even scheduling their vacations around their golf commitments.
Whether it be the JGFA, U.S. Kids or PGA offerings like the Prep Tour and Junior League, my students have chosen to test their skills on the course and play with other young golfers this summer. I am inspired by their dedication and I am awed by their willingness to learn from every experience that is placed in front of them.
Sadly, I cannot be present at so many events to see them in action but I am thankful for the parents who send me pictures and videos. Knowing that they are out playing, having fun and doing their best makes me happy.
I happened to be coming back from lunch when I spotted some familiar faces on the green just ahead of me. Four of my homeschool group golf students decided to put their skills to the test by playing 9 holes at Okeeheelee Golf Course. When I walked up I experienced the feelings of a proud dad. In less than a year these boys had learned enough to feel comfortable getting on the course and tackling what I call big ball syndrome...this is when the confidence you developed practicing on the range gets eaten up by the vastness of the actual golf course.
The boys were having fun and that's my main goal when teaching junior golfers. Additionally, I was told they were hitting some great drives, approach shots and they were very diligent is filling divots. One of the Moms is also my student so she was serving as their "coach" for the round. Another Mom was taking pictures while the other Moms were watching from the carts. It was really amazing to see. These are memories that these boys will cherish and I can only imagine how the Moms felt watching their young golfers progress through the course.