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RussUK

Why is golf still viewed as a sport for the "minority"

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6 minutes ago, paininthenuts said:

compared with most sports it is an extravagance

For kids to play golf, the parents generally have to introduce them to it.

When I was a kid, we played a game called crash ball. It was real simple. Kid A would throw, kick or drop a ball. Everyone else tried to get the ball at whatever cost. Then that kid became the thrower/kicker/dropper. The only expenses were bruises and bloody noses.

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On 11/28/2016 at 10:16 AM, MrDC said:

On a personal level I'm happy about it, I have no interest in golf courses becoming a mall scene, young Americans just don't have the demeanor for golf, I can't imagine playing a course full of young people, just one group can haunt a round.

Herein lies part of the problem. 

Anyways, regarding the cost prohibitive aspect to golf, it might not necessarily be only for the rich as most middle and lower middle class people can afford it, it is NOT a sport for the poor.

7 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

When I was a kid, we played a game called crash ball. It was real simple. Kid A would throw, kick or drop a ball. Everyone else tried to get the ball at whatever cost. Then that kid became the thrower/kicker/dropper. The only expenses were bruises and bloody noses.

I believe the official name is Kill the Carrier. It's in the handbook.

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2 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

For kids to play golf, the parents generally have to introduce them to it.

When I was a kid, we played a game called crash ball. It was real simple. Kid A would throw, kick or drop a ball. Everyone else tried to get the ball at whatever cost. Then that kid became the thrower/kicker/dropper. The only expenses were bruises and bloody noses.

That is the biggest barrier to golf, exposure.  Kids can play football, stickball, hockey, soccer and basketball in their yard and street (though I hardly ever see kids play outside anymore).  They all learn and progress together with some influence from parents but it's not necessary.  I taught myself how to throw a baseball and football and to play hockey.  

Golf can be introduced to children with a Fisher Price set but to really learn how to play you need to go to a range which typically requires a parent (unless you live on a golf course).  

Parents of school age children have either not taken up golf yet or play it infrequently and use any available time they do have to play golf as an escape for some "me time" which doesn't include the kids.  

By the time the kids are older and the parents have more free time to play golf with their kids most kids haven't gained an interest in golf.  It seems grandparents today are the people influencing their grandchildren to play golf.  I see at my local range grandparents taking their grandchildren to the range and teaching them how to play.  I do see some parents too but with much lesser frequency.

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5 minutes ago, colin007 said:

I believe the official name is Kill the Carrier. It's in the handbook.

Well. There was another less P.C. name for it. Crash ball was the more acceptable one that we'd use around the adults.

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8 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

Well. There was another less P.C. name for it. Crash ball was the more acceptable one that we'd use around the adults.

Omg yes! I had totally forgotten....It starts with "Smear", correct?

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12 minutes ago, colin007 said:

Omg yes! I had totally forgotten....It starts with "Smear", correct?

Yep.

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Probably a minor point worth making: many of the companies that sponsor professional golfers e.g., banks, insurance companies, luxury auto makers, private jet charter services, luxury watch makers, etc. cater to the upper middle or upper class. You don't see too many Coors Light or Glidden Paint logos on golf hats or polo shirts. People watching on television, even for a moment, are sure to notice this.

Edited by Kalnoky

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I live in far Northern Maine and teach in a small k-12 school, 450 students in total and I also coach the varsity golf team. I keep my clubs over the winter in my elementary office as I use an OptiShot over the winter with the kids not he golf team and also keep clubs in my high school office. When kids come to my room for band lessons or tech help they see the clubs so they are exposed through me pretty early on and it stays all the way through high school. We don't have a huge team but many of the kids I work with that don't play I see out at the course shortly after graduating and they kick themselves for now joining the team. We have a pretty good base of younger players in their teens and 20's. 

It's definitely seen as a sport in this area as you have to be an athlete to walk our local course..lol. In my experience it really does come down to exposure, the earlier the better. Not pushing but just making it visible and known goes a long way.

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10 hours ago, iacas said:

 

Once you get past the basic level, every sport can get expensive.

That can be be true, but only if you let it. If you are not too fussed about labels and brand names and take advantage of deals it is possible to keep the cost of sport down. Just takes a little work anf patience.

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4 hours ago, RussUK said:

That can be be true, but only if you let it. If you are not too fussed about labels and brand names and take advantage of deals it is possible to keep the cost of sport down. Just takes a little work anf patience.

The same can be said for golf.  My daughter took up figure skating, between lessons, skates, clothing and ice time it was just as expensive, if not more than golf.  Ice hockey is also very popular here and the cost of that is even higher.  

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26 minutes ago, newtogolf said:

The same can be said for golf.  My daughter took up figure skating, between lessons, skates, clothing and ice time it was just as expensive, if not more than golf.  Ice hockey is also very popular here and the cost of that is even higher.  

 
 
 

I agree completely. Football can be just as expensive too. Shoulder pads, helmets etc... and football gloves can even run up to $60! 

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34 minutes ago, newtogolf said:

Ice hockey is also very popular here and the cost of that is even higher.  

No doubt. It's one of the biggest barriers to this being a much bigger sport.

Years ago. My high school graduation gift was my hockey gear. We weren't exactly buying top of the line stuff and it still racked up $500. I'm sure its far worse now unless you go the used route.

My body broke down before most of that stuff did, but I remember spending a bunch on sticks. Of course, ice time always costs something as well. It generally wasn't that far off a typical round on a muni course. My Sunday morning group was usually $15 per session.

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2 hours ago, Golfaddict247 said:

I agree completely. Football can be just as expensive too. Shoulder pads, helmets etc... and football gloves can even run up to $60! 

I thought the above was going a little too far in player safety till i remembered you were talking about the kind of football you play predominantly with your hands and not "real" English footie :-P.

In soccer providing you dont go for the Uber expensive boots all you need are shin pads, or as my dad used to use, corrigated cardboard or rolled up newspapers!

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12 minutes ago, RussUK said:

I thought the above was going a little too far in player safety till i remembered you were talking about the kind of football you play predominantly with your hands and not "real" English footie :-P.

In soccer providing you dont go for the Uber expensive boots all you need are shin pads, or as my dad used to use, corrigated cardboard or rolled up newspapers!

Shin pads? About $10 or 8 pounds, I think.

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1 hour ago, RussUK said:

I thought the above was going a little too far in player safety till i remembered you were talking about the kind of football you play predominantly with your hands and not "real" English footie :-P.

In soccer providing you dont go for the Uber expensive boots all you need are shin pads, or as my dad used to use, corrigated cardboard or rolled up newspapers!

Remember that the English came up with both football and soccer as terms for the same sport! :-P

Expense can be seen in the facilities that other sports use too. Granted you can play soccer or American football on any field, but the more organized, the more expensive the facility. Same with basketball, hockey, swimming, etc.

Cycling for racing folks can get pricey too. I would say it is equal to golf if not more factoring in equipment and race fees.

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On 11/28/2016 at 5:11 AM, RussUK said:

Not so long ago i went to visit my sister and was talking to her youngest son. He's 10 years old plays rugby, learning guitar and like most kids loves his video games. He asked me if i still played golf, i said i did, he asked me why i played so i told him that its a great game, gets you out doors and all the usual stuff.

I told him i had a spare set of clubs, and being quite tall for his age, should be ok with the short irons if he fancied going to the range to have a go.

Now the response i got was fairly expeceted but still got me thinking. He said thanks but no thanks as he thought golf was a game for "old retired people or those who have lots of money and dont have to work" and that would put him off. I argued that its a game for everyone and that many young people play such as Jordan Speith, Ricky Fowler etc. "but golf is their job uncle Russ" fair point.

Now, not all youngsters view the sport this way but how can we say we need to get more young people taking up the sport, yet still (in some cases, not all) cling to the old ways and traditions with some clubs still discriminating against the other sex, outdated membership "interviews" and confusing rules?

Can golf shake off the old stereotypes and misguided views or do we just need to accept it the way it is?

Just not the old part. . .

Even though my kids are on golf teams and take it seriously 5-6 months out of the year, they still consider it a "sport" for old retired people who have enough money to play it.

So, if you're hooked on golf for golfing sake, there are many inexpensive options for playing, so I don't see it as an elite sport for the rich old people. I just see it as a sport for old people***. :-D

 

***Even when I was in my 30s, I still surfed (long board is for old retirees), mountain/rock climbed (hiking/scrambling is for old people), mountain biked, etc. You name something young people do, and I probably did it. As an older person, golf is perfect for me, that and hiking, long board, shooting, etc. None of these are inherently expensive, but of course, they can be if you only want to show off your money.

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