Originally Posted by Jeremie Boop
Wait, so there wasn't a large increase in players of golf when Tiger first came on the scene and gained widespread notoriety? Funny, because I was pretty sure a lot of parents got into golf as well as getting their kids into golf thinking it they may have the next phenom. I could have mistaken how much of an impact that was on the numbers of people golfing though. I know for a fact that there was a pretty large increase in kids taking up golf during that time in my area and parents along with them. Could have been something that didn't repeat everywhere though.
Jeremie, first anyone on this site is a golfer, a passioned one at that.
There was a tremendous amount of hype, news of what would happen with Mr Woods, once he turned pro, most of which never ever materialized.
through out TW career, his legacy will be that he grew TV awareness, the red Nike shirt on Sundays & prize money. What will not be his legacy will be growth in the youth, minorities, average Joes and Janes picking up clubs or even club/ball sales.
If you consider Mr. Woods came on in 1997 there was some initial increase of "participation", (1.5 million + ) but many who did pick up the club have dropped out soon after or elected to do something else since that time.
But overall since that time the number of participation has slowly and surely been dropping. Keep in mind and this may sound morbid, but we can all agree that there has always been an older crowd playing, each year these people die or become unable to play. So when you see a kid begin swinging a club, there are a few more on the back end that are not. Again I am not blaming Mr. Woods, simple stating data available within the golf industry. Rounds are down , New players are down- all demographics are down each and every year. The only bright side is their are more college educated, middle age and older women playing now.
Right now for every new course opening there are 20 that are closing- not resold, but closing.
Last year 2013 for example this country experienced the most "golf days" in over a decade, the number of golf days were up almost 15%, no serious storms, great fall weather, and an early spring start for almost all areas of the country, yet despite the spike in the # of golf days, golf rounds were down almost 12%, golfers were down 10% and the number of "new" golfers ( defined as anyone playing 4 rounds in 6 months last year and has only played <2 years) was down over 20%.The economy has been tanking for 6 years now. The economy contrary to what may be reported is not growing or improving.
This not merely a market correction or simply blamed on the economy- this trend has been going on since the late 90s and early 2000s. I am not saying the sky is falling there are still 18-20 million playing- down from almost 28 million.