I like teaching golf because it is a great skill to have for your entire life. I also enjoy teaching golf because it is a competitive sport. If you are willing to put in the effort and the discipline to practice what you have been taught you can set yourself to do well in tournaments.
Sportsmanship counts when you are playing well and when you are playing poorly. One of my players was seen throwing his clubs in a recent tournament. This is absolutely unacceptable and I had a stern conversation with that player.
I was also told that a player withdrew from a tournament after playing only 9 of 18 holes. His father was unsatisfied with his level of play because he was unlikely to take first or second place so he pulled him out. Not only does this decision teach the golfer to give up rather than finish strong , it is unsportsmanlike conduct in my opinion. Three players started the round and three players should finish the round.
Another way to show sportsmanship is to stay until members of the age group have finished play. This is not always possible since some groups are very large but if there are only 2 or 3 groups, make the effort to stay and congratulate the winners.
When I coached golf summer camps we awarded a sportsmanship award to the golfer who best displayed this core value most consistently over the course of a week. Sadly, it was really tough to find someone who did. Most juniors lack the maturity to look past their bad shot and keep playing while others think it is fun to laugh at another's failures. None of this acceptable behavior and when I see it it gets corrected immediately.
To be quite honest, I believe most adults are challenged in this area as well. The game is golf and it is supposed to be fun. You will have days when your talent shows up on the scorecard and then there will be days when it doesn't. No matter the day, golfers of all any ages need to learn to support and encourage each other.
sportsmanship: fair and generous behavior or treatment of others,
especially in a sports contest.