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READY FOR ACTION R&A Ready Golf initiative starts to gain momentum


New online platform launched Volume 14 Issue 3 March 2018

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Professional THE OFFICIAL PGA MEMBERS’ MAGAZINE Editor: Jane Carter

19 Are You Ready?

The R&A addresses the issue of slow play

24 Player Performance Study

PGA News and Features: Steven Carpenter (; Adrian Milledge (


This Month From The Chief Executive

Coaching: David Colclough

Improving the personal and professional lives of PGA Members


PGA News

News from The PGA and the wider world of golf

Marketing: Antje Doel Contributors: Angela Youngman, Phil Barnard, Lee McLaughlan; Advertising sales: Ben Foster (; Keith Foster ( Employment opportunities: Kelly Lewis ( Photography: Getty Images, Adrian Milledge, The R&A Design: Tim Hack PGA National Headquarters Centenary House The Belfry, Sutton Coldfield West Midlands B76 9PT Tel: 01675 470 333 Fax: 01675 477 888 The Professional Golfers’ Association Limited accepts no responsibility for the products or services offered by the advertisers in this publication nor does it necessarily agree with any views expressed, statements or claims made by the advertisers in this publication. ©The Professional Golfers’ Association Limited 2018 All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photography and recording, without the written permission of the copyright holder, application for which should be addressed to the copyright holder (PGA). ®PGA, the Crest and PGA Pro - the Heart of Golf are registered trademarks of The Professional Golfers’ Association Limited.



He who hesitates could be lost


48 Coaching Opinion

Does The PGA swing still exist? (Part II)

58 PGA Member Benefits


62 Employment Opportunities

The latest vacancies


26 Hands On

Re-gripping clubs can be a nice little earner

30 Trade News

New products and people on the move

36 Retail Watch

Taking stock and Headingley pro is top of the shops

39 Fashion Focus


Stylish AW 18 collections combat the elements


44 Master Stroke

Taking groups to Augusta and the Ryder Cup

47 High Fives


Top picks in the USA and France from


50 Maximising your website

How to keep customers engaged

53 The Power Of Social Media

Planning a content calendar

56 New Member Retention

Front cover: The R&A addresses the issue of slow play, see page 18

The PGA Professional

| March 2018

Keeping newcomers engaged and feeling wanted /thepga professional-golfers-association

53 /thepga /thepga


Working Together for Business and Golf

Helping the golf industry do business

Centenary House, The Belfry, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands B76 9PT Ž PGA and The Heart of Golf are registered trademarks of The Professional Golfers’ Association Limited.



ollowing on from our Regional Meetings we have received lots of positive feedback from Members who were present. We had record attendances at them and can I once again thank those of you that attended. A key focus of our strategy is to engage, communicate and gain feedback from our Members and in my regular monthly article I

will continue to update you on the work of the Association as we continue to focus on our vision ‘to improve the personal and professional lives of our Members’.

MEMBER BENEFITS This month sees the launch of our new Member Benefit programme which you can read more about on page 58. Building on our current Member benefits we have now introduced a very comprehensive list of benefits with major retailers and various other companies which should provide you with savings on your household spending. We see this as a foundation to build on and other benefits will be introduced in the future. One of the challenges we have found in developing these new benefits is accessing ones for our Irish Region and overseas Members. This will continue to be a challenge but we will endeavour to try and find solutions.

the website on a regular basis. We have started a project to redevelop the website and I will update you on progress in the coming months.

MEMBER COMMUNICATION The recent Member survey highlighted some interesting statistics relating to Member communication. The survey indicated that 21 per cent of you read the PGA Professional magazine, 39 per cent access PGA information via email and 6 per cent access information via social media. To ensure we communicate with you in the most appropriate way we are in the process of refining our Member communications. Last month we launched a new look PGA Professional magazine which has received positive feedback from many of you; in the coming months we will be introducing a new email communication incorporating both national and regional news. In the late spring we will be conducting another survey dedicated to Member communication as we want to get your feedback on how best to fine-tune our communications with you.

REGIONAL MANAGERS As I outlined in my piece in the February edition of the magazine we have redefined the role of the Regional Secretaries and changed their job title to Regional Managers. We have reviewed the staffing levels in each region and, where required, have introduced new staff to allow the Regional Managers to concentrate on their new role. A key focus of the new role will be to engage with all Members in the region including connecting with and visiting those who are not engaged with the Association and those who need support and help.

PGA WEBSITE We are aware many of you struggle to navigate the Members’ section of the website with only 25 per cent of you using The PGA Professional

| March 2018

PLAYING OPPORTUNITIES As you may be aware we currently have a number of overseas Pro-Ams organised by the regions. We have recently pulled all these overseas Pro-Ams together and all Members can now participate in each one - details are available on the home page of the PGA website. The Member survey indicated you want to see more opportunities to play social golf and we are looking to introduce a number of social golf events in each region.

WOMEN AND FAMILIES A strength of our game is that we have a very diverse collection of golf clubs all offering different types of membership and playing opportunities. In recent years many clubs have developed initiatives around getting more women and families to play. I am aware many of you have developed such initiatives and this year we are launching a project to highlight the great work PGA Professionals are undertaking in this area.

We know about some of this work and are keen to hear from more Members on what is being done in this area. If you have examples you would like to share please contact Jonathan Wright on R&A 9-HOLE INITIATIVE We are pleased to support the R&A’s initiative to encourage shorter formats of the game including a nationwide competition that will culminate with 21 pairs tackling nine holes at Carnoustie on the Saturday before The Open Championship in July. In addition to being played over nine holes, the qualifying events and final at Carnoustie will feature ‘Ready Golf’, another R&A initiative to speed up play. A feature on these can be found on page 19 of this month’s issue.

Robert Maxfield Chief Executive


News Entries open for Europe’s largest pro-am, the Lombard Trophy MORE THAN 1,000 golfers will contest this year’s Lombard Trophy, Europe’s largest pro-am which culminates with a grand final on Portugal’s Algarve in September. The final will once again be staged on the Championship course at the five-star Pestana Vila Sol Golf & Resort Hotel, Vilamoura, and will feature 14 pairs competing for the £12,000 first prize. The finalists will be determined by 14 regional qualifiers that start on June 5 in the Midlands at Little Aston and finish two months later on August 2 at Burnham & Berrow in Somerset. Lombard, a leading management finance company providing leasing and hire purchase products, is supporting the competition for a third successive year with a £41,450 prize fund. The company is also backing the women’s version of the proam, the WPGA Lombard Trophy. This will be contested by six pairs at Pestana Vila Sol Golf & Resort Hotel simultaneously with the men’s. Commenting on Lombard’s support, PGA chief executive Robert Maxfield said: “Lombard is a fantastic sponsor of the PGA National Pro-Am Championship and we’re delighted to have their support once again in 2018. “This is a unique event as it offers PGA Professionals a rare opportunity to team up with an amateur and represent their club in a national event. “The competition features 14 superb regional final venues

and Pestana Vila Sol Golf & Resort Hotel will again prove to be a spectacular setting for the finale.”
 Ian Isaac, head of Lombard, added: “It’s great for us to be working with The PGA once again to offer amateur and professional golfers the opportunity to play some of the best courses across the UK and Ireland. “Well over a million amateur golfers have participated in the Lombard Trophy over the years and we look forward to welcoming thousands more who wish to seize the chance to make their mark in 2018.” 

 Entry packs will be arriving at golf clubs across the UK this month. Entries are now open online by visiting www.pgagbi.

Notice of Annual General Meeting NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that the Thirty-Third Annual General Meeting (the “Meeting”) of The Professional Golfers’ Association Limited (the “Company”) will be held in The Triumvirate Suite, Ping House, The Belfry, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands B76 9PR on Thursday 29 March 2018 at 2.00 p.m., to transact the following business: 1. To receive and adopt the Annual Report and Financial Statements for the group and parent Company for the year ended 31 December 2017. The Annual Report and Financial Statements will be available on the Company website ( from Friday 2 March 2018 until the conclusion of the Meeting. The documents can be found on the members’ area of the Company website - log in then go to Information and Resources. If you have any difficulty accessing the website, or require a hard copy of the documents ahead of the meeting, please contact Emma Hadlow on 01675 470333. Information on how to appoint proxies will also be available on the Company website from Monday 26 February 2018 until the conclusion of the Meeting. This information can be found on the members’ area of the Company website - log in then go to Information and Resources - AGM. Registered Assistant Professionals are permitted to attend the Meeting but are not entitled to vote. By order of the Board Robert Maxfield, Company Secretary, 12 February 2018


Hunt is the leader of the TGI pack OLIVER HUNT, the head PGA Professional at Headingley Golf Club, has won the prestigious TGI Partner of the Year award. Hunt, 38, learned of his success during the group’s annual awards ceremony and conference, staged this year at the five-star Fairmont St Andrews hotel. Michael McCrudden (Roe Park), Robert Irvine (Douglas Park) and Taunton & Pickeridge’s Simon Stevenson were also nominated for the award and Hunt was surprised to win. “It was a real shock to hear my name called out,” said Hunt, who was presented with his award by Stephen Nicholls, last year’s winner. “To be crowned Partner of the Year when we have nearly 500 high quality PGA Professionals in the group is an absolute honour. “There are so many great pros in the group, in fact it’s more like a family, everyone is willing to help each other out and that’s what makes it so special. “To be standing up on that stage and honoured among a room of such amazing people is something that will stay with me forever.” The ceremony, attended by more than 300 TGI Partners and golf industry personnel, featured the presentation of three other awards to PGA pros and four to suppliers. Moor Hall Golf Club’s Cameron Clark collected the Pro Shop of the Year award, Bangor Golf Club’s Stephen Gordon was named New Partner of the Year, while David Orr from Eastwood won Most Improved Business. The Supplier awards are all decided on the back of the TGI Golf Supplier Survey, where Partners score all the brands on a variety of categories including product quality and customer service. For the third straight year, and fourth time overall, PING collected the coveted Partner Supplier of the Year award. Callaway collected the Product of the Year award for its EPIC series, while Sunderland of Scotland entered the winner’s circle for the first time collecting the Apparel Supplier of the Year award.

Oliver Hunt (left) is presented with his award by last year’s winner, Stephen Nicholls.

The PGA Professional

| March 2018

Russian pro overcomes language barrier to make history ANTON SAMSONOV has made his very own piece of PGA history by becoming the first Russian to complete The PGA Director of Golf qualification. After graduating with a degree in Professional Golf Studies from the University of Birmingham in 2013, Samsonov became director of golf at Russia’s Forest Hills. Samsonov saw the qualification as the perfect way to continue his education with The PGA. The 31-year-old wants to use his new skills to increase membership at Baku Dreamland Golf Club, Azerbaijan, where he has been since December 2016. “I’m happy to be the first representative of my country to show that we are doing our best and I hope that I won’t be the last one,” said Samsonov. Created ten years ago, the DoG qualification provides a means of recognition for PGA Members like Samsonov already working in a director of golf role. The course is made up of three key stages; an Induction Day, the PGA Certificate of Golf Management Theory and the PGA Director of Golf Qualification itself. Candidates are assessed on seven units, ranging from finance and marketing to personal management and customer service. “With the golf industry changing over the years, I had to know the latest information from the best experts in the area,” Samsonov revealed. “Working in my position as a director of golf, the course was a great way to check my skill level and learn other important areas that are beneficial for clubs.” Samsonov’s training does not stop there. He plans to apply for his APAL Advanced Professional status and is keen to help continue growing the sport in Russia. PGA Master Professional Mulgrew, a tutor and course mentor, added: “Despite the language barrier and travel difficulties, Anton has always maintained a smiling, dedicated and determined attitude to everything involving his future in golf.” 7

Henrik Stenson

Charley Hoffman

Adam Scott Jordan Spieth

Tommy Fleetwood

Rickie Fowler

Justin Thomas

Bill Haas


4,478 34 #1



Charl Schwartzel




Webb Simpson Bernhard Langer

Danielle Kang

Paul Casey

Rafa Cabrera Bello

Source: Darrell Survey, Sports Marketing Surveys Inc. Northmountain International. Based upon results through 25/2/2018 on the U.S. PGA, U.S. LPGA, Champions,, South African, Asian, Korean, OneAsia, Australasian, Japan, Canadian PGA and PGA European Tours.

Russell Henley

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News Tony Rees (1940 – 2018) TONY REES, the PGA Professional who served Oxford Golf

50 years at his club, an achievement

Club for more than half a century, has passed away at the

recognised by a special letter of

age of 77.

congratulations from one of his early

Tony began his professional golfing career at what was then the Oxford University Golf Club in March 1957.

inspirations as a professional golfer, Gary Player.

He trained under former PGA chairman Fred Taylor and

Affectionately known as ‘The Pro’

succeeded him as head professional six years later, a role

throughout his career, Tony continued

he held until his retirement in March 2015.

to help and support all those golfers

Tony’s early playing record was impressive: he held the Midland Professionals, Assistants and Match Play titles in the same year as competing in the Open Championship. He had the opportunity to become one of Ernest Butten’s ‘Boys’ in the 1960s and join the likes of Tommy

who came into contact with him. He was especially supportive to those of us who had the privilege to learn under his tutelage, and Tony was always happy to give his time and knowledge to help us develop.

Horton and Brian Barnes. However, he opted to stay with

As David Johnson, a fellow PGA Member so eloquently

the Oxford University Golf Club, forging an outstanding

put it: “He was a human being of real quality. He not only

career as a PGA Professional.

cared about his fellow professionals, but about the good

Tony was not only one of the first PGA tutors but also

of the game.

a founder member of the Foremost group. In addition he

“He should be remembered as a man who enhanced

was a very active member of both the South Region and

golf, and who really shone when he showed his ability as

BB&O PGA committees.

a PGA Professional. I’m proud and feel very privileged to

He was made a PGA Honorary member on reaching

have been able to call him a friend.”

Support group set up to help golf club leaders Carter continued: “The golf industry is now seeing A NETWORKING GROUP has been launched to provide increased legislation, innovative technology and golf club chairmen and women with an accessible source of developments which impact clubs on a daily basis. information and support to aid in the successful running of “Through our four key components; Networking, Social their businesses. Golf, Education and Sharing Knowledge, is the brainchild of seeks to facilitate Jane Carter and Eddie Bullock, two leading access to the right information, giving consultants in the golf industry with a guidance to make decisions knowledgably combined 70 years of experience working and reliably.” with clubs at every level. Their views are supported by the leading They identified that this role is an golf industry bodies, The PGA and England increasingly complicated and onerous Golf, as well as the Golf Club Managers’ one to fulfil and no organisation exists to Association (GCMA), who are also backing support this individual or encourage peerthe ground-breaking initiative. to-peer knowledge sharing. Robert Maxfield, chief executive of “The role is changing,” explained The PGA, added: “We look forward to Bullock, a former PGA captain. “They are working with the chair of the golf clubs to no longer just figureheads and the wealth Eddie Bullock foster an understanding of the role a PGA of experience they have is invaluable to the Professional can play within the golf club golf industry. and how The PGA can support clubs and help grow the “ aims to foster the sharing of game.” knowledge, best practice and increasing awareness of the is free to join. For more information challenges influencing the golf industry and the support and to register go to available to golf clubs and their volunteers.” 10

News Birdietime becomes an official PGA Partner BIRDIETIME, the Finnish-based company behind the increasingly popular online golf related booking, administration and marketing service for golf pros, has become a PGA Partner. The service connects coaches and golfers by allowing amateurs to find a club and PGA Professional on or buy services on a pro’s website. Birdietime makes it easy to purchase private or group lessons as well as gift cards and packages. Under its new PGA Partner status, Birdietime will continue its expansion across Great Britain, Ireland and within the EU, and develop stronger business relationships with professional golfers. Birdietime cuts out administration duties for coaches, giving them more time to focus on more profitable activities, and provides opportunities to reach new clients as well as reducing the number of lesson ‘no-shows’. As a result, a PGA Professional’s workload is made easier by building an infrastructure to support booking and billing of golf lessons. In addition, players get easy access to a coach and golf clubs have a modern system for their members and visitors. Commenting on the partnership, Mikko Back, founder and chief golf officer of Birdietime, said: “It was energising to meet with The PGA team. “It enabled us to see how aligned we are in our thinking as to how the golf instruction business will evolve in the coming years.” Launched in 2016, Birdietime has already registered more than 200 professionals registered in several countries, including Great Britain and Ireland. Hamish Ferguson, PGA executive director, commercial, added: “Mikko and his innovative team have created a fantastic digital platform in a short space of time that I’m sure will be of great benefit to many of our Members.”

The PGA Professional

| March 2018

Great War toll approaches three figures EXTENSIVE RESEARCH conducted by the Association’s former chairman, Dr Philip Weaver OBE, has found the number of PGA Professionals killed in action during World War I is approaching a century. The total now stands four shy of three figures but the addition of number 95 to the roster of fatalities has fuelled his hopes of completing what has been a chilling and thought-provoking task. “Number 95 proved to be Private James McKay Anderson, the PGA Professional at Lanark Golf Club in Scotland,” explained Dr Weaver, curator of PGA heritage. “He joined the 1st Battalion Black Watch (Royal Highlanders) in January 1915 and was killed by a bomb dropped from an aircraft in August 1918 just three months before the war ended. He was 36-years-old.” Dr Weaver noted that, as the pro at Lanark Golf Club, Private Anderson was a predecessor of the Association’s current chairman, Alan White. “I emailed Alan with the details of Private Anderson’s fate,” Dr Weaver added. “He in turn informed his members and the response was remarkable. “He received half-a-dozen emails about the sad story – one even suggested erecting a memorial to honour Private Anderson. “Obviously no-one remembers Private Anderson there but the thought occurs to me members at other clubs which lost PGA Professionals in the conflict might like to know some additional details. “There is also a chance that, once informed, they may be able to shed some light on what happened to their former pros or even tell us about ones that perished we don’t know about. “We have details of 78 clubs still in existence that lost pros and I’d be grateful if their successors followed what Alan did and let their members know.” *A list of the fatalities and the clubs can be found on and Dr Weaver contacted by emailing 11




Helping Tommy Fleetwood was elementary for Watson TOMMY FLEETWOOD is one of golf’s hottest properties but he would be the first to attribute his early successes to Cheshire-based PGA professional John Watson. Watson, who coaches at Styal Golf Club, recalled: “His dad Peter approached local businessman Nigel Compsty, my colleague in our on-course management company, and asked if we could help his nine-year-old son. “Tommy was obviously a talented player and one of the first events we invited him to was a PGA North Region pro-am. “Nigel generously provided his dad with a car and funding to help take his son to various tournaments up and down the country. On one occasion, during a trip to Wentworth, he met Denis Pugh which was a real thrill. And he won the competition as well! “Sky Sports also did a feature on him at Southport & Ainsdale which was a revelation for people who did not know him. “We also took Tommy to a major golf retailer to ensure he had sufficient gear. By then he was 11 and obviously very talented but our relationship came to an end after three years or so when it became obvious we couldn’t do much more for him. “We’d like think that down the line we helped him to get where he is today. Without us, who knows, he might never have made it! But Watson admitted: “I didn’t offer to coach him – I couldn’t find a single flaw in his swing. The way he hit the ball told us he was always going to be something special. “I remember him playing in the Lytham Trophy when he was about 17 and he shot 67 in the first round which did not surprise me in the slightest. “The next time I saw him was at the Masters and he wandered over and thanked Nigel and myself for what we did for him.”

Sanders goes full circle

LIFE HAS TURNED a full circle for Mark Sanders who started golf as a 13-year-old junior at Knowle Golf Club. Now 30 years later he is back as the club’s head professional. “It was always my ambition to return,” he said after succeeding Nigel Warburton. Sanders was coached by the late Gordon Brand Senior who wished him good luck shortly before his recent death. He won the English Amateur at Woodhall Spa in 1998 and qualified to play in The Open at Lytham St Annes in 2001 after he moved to Bristol and Clifton for three seasons. “A member there offered to pay my expenses to compete around the country as my parents couldn’t afford the cost,” he said. English international Sanders then advanced to the Challenge Tour for three years and the European Tour with modest success. Again costs proved a barrier so he joined the PGA and signed with Tony Mealing at The Kendleshire. He returned to Knowle as assistant to Rob Hayward before becoming teaching professional at Stockwood Vale for eight years. He is also a Gloucestershire county coach. Knowle assistant James Jakes has now taken over a coaching role at Stockwood. Sanders is seeking an assistant as former Mendip club professional Kevin Pitts, who was lined up for the role, is unwell. He also hopes to return to playing this year. He said: “I haven’t had the time for several years but now I am my own boss I expect to play in Order of Merit events and selected pro-ams.”

New captain speaks from experience This year’s Midland region captain Noel Woodman has revealed he was helped by The PGA Benevolent Fund four years ago and has urged his fellow pros to support it. Woodman, who has succeeded Hawkstone Park’s Keith Harris as captain, has been head professional at Kidderminster Golf Club for six years. However, he was unable to work for six months of that spell because of a back



injury. Which is where the Benevolent Fund’s David Wright and his fellow trustees stepped in. Woodman, speaking at the annual Regional Members’ Meeting held at Henley Golf Club, recalled: “I’ve been lucky and unlucky. “I was unlucky insomuch that I injured my back four years ago and needed an operation. It kept me out of the game for


six months. “I wasn’t aware of the Benevolent Fund at the time and it was suggested I gave David Wright a call, which I did. That was when I was lucky - he was fantastic and helped me tremendously. “There are many cases the Fund has to help but there are limited resources. It does amazing work and I urge you to support it. We might need the fund one day as I did.”

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National awards for Mankert and Turnock

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ANDERS MANKERT was presented with a Lifetime Service Award and Matthew Turnock was named Coach of the Year during England Golf’s annual awards presentation in London. Mankert, a PGA Advanced Fellow Professional based at Cosby Golf Club, Leicestershire, was nominated by a number of his students who described him as a ‘unique inspiration’ for introducing them to golf and changing their lives. Many of those are blind or visually impaired and the judges said the 44-yearold’s selfless dedication over two decades has helped make the game of golf more inclusive. Mankert also runs a scholarship programme offering young golfers the opportunity to work like a tour pro for a year. “It’s quite humbling and it’s the most amazing thing that has happened in my career,” said Mankert. “It’s not why I do it, but it’s a lovely, lovely thing to be recognised for your efforts and to know that people actually care.” Meanwhile, Turnock was recognised for introducing children and adults to the sport and working with disability groups. The 46-year-old has taken golf into around 50 schools in the Macclesfield area and youngsters are urged to pursue their interest in the game at his club, Mottram Hill, Cheshire, where under-18s are offered free membership. Turnock has also introduced more than 500 adults to golf through his Get into Golf courses, teaching the basics of the game. “It was a very big surprise to be nominated for this award,” said Turnock. “It’s great to be recognised by your peers. “I think I’m just doing something normal but its seems to help so many people come out of their shell and to gain confidence.” PGA Professionals Phil Akers (The Belfry), Aaron Lansberry (Hatchford Brook Golf Centre) and Mankert all made the Coach of the Year shortlist.

Anders Mankert (left) pictured with Stuart Attfield of Bridgestone who sponsored the award.

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Matthew Turnock (right) pictured with PGA chief executive Robert Maxfield. |

The PGA Professional

| March 2018


R E G I O N A L Ireland



Stars line up to be Torrance gives indoor king of the Castle facility the thumbs up THE PGA IN IRELAND, Carr Golf, DS Automobiles and Monami Construction have agreed a deal to bring the Irish Club Professional Tournament back to the five-star Dromoland Castle in May. The Ron Kirby & J.B. Carr designed course will once again host the 36-hole professional only event on May 16 and 17, which will feature a prize fund of €13,000. The tournament will be preceded by a corporate pro-am tournament on May 15. Dromoland Castle managing director, Mark Nolan, said: “We were very happy with the profile the golf course and estate received from the inaugural tournament last year. “A second year gives us an opportunity to once again engage with professionals from all over Ireland and to promote and develop the golf facility at Dromoland Golf & Country Club.” The tournament will be sponsored by Carr Golf, Ireland’s largest golf management business, premium motor brand DS Automobiles, and Galway-based Monami Construction. The tournament was launched in 1993 and won by David Higgins for the second time in succession last year. He is likely to face tough opposition in the form of Damien McGrane, Colm Moriarty and Simon Thornton to make it a hat-trick of wins. PGA in Ireland secretary, Michael McCumiskey, said: “We are delighted to announce the Irish Club Professional Tournament will return to Dromoland Castle and acknowledge the support of Carr Golf and sponsors DS Automobiles and Monami Construction. “Last year’s event was well supported by PGA pros who enjoyed the challenging golf course and the excellent accommodation at the Dromoland Hotel.” Louise Murphy, marketing director, DS Automobiles Ireland, added: “We are thrilled to announce the partnership of DS Automobiles with the 2018 Irish Club Professional Golf Tournament again this year. “As an emerging premium brand in the motor industry, DS Automobiles is proud to support one of Ireland’s premier golf tournaments.” 14

RYDER CUP LEGEND Sam Torrance has heaped praise on a new indoor practice facility close to his hometown of Largs. The state-of-the-art development studio was officially opened recently at Gourock Golf Club and Torrance was among the first to pay a visit. “It is just absolutely magnificent, honest to God,” he said. “It’s done in its own entity and it’s somewhere you could go and hit balls for five hours and not even blink.” The £189,000 indoor practice facility, which is the first of its kind in the west of Scotland, was mainly funded by grants of £80,000 from the European Union ‘Leader’ fund, £10,000 from the National Lottery’s Awards for All Scotland scheme. Contributions were also made by generous benefactors and sponsors, allowing the purpose-built studio to feature a range of facilities. These include a high-tech simulator (two bays), teaching studio, club fitting, lounge area and a kitchen. The centre uses two state-of-the-art camera systems supplied by Foresight Sports and the overall project is aimed at adding value to the current members. It is also to help create pathways for those new to golf and increase engagement with juniors through a high tech and modern facility and other local community groups. “They are trying to introduce juniors into the game and it’s a great idea as it’s a wonderful set up,” added Torrance, who was invited along by the club’s PGA Pro Derek Watters. “They have really pushed the boat out. It’s a fantastic facility for anyone, old or young. It has everything you need.”

News and opinions from the world of golf

Ryder Cup winner Rafferty agrees amateur ambassador role FORMER EUROPEAN TOUR NO.1 and Ryder Cup star Ronan Rafferty is set to nurture the next wave of golfing talent after becoming an ambassador for the World Amateur Tour. A superb amateur in his youth as his victories in the Boy’s Amateur Championship and the English Open Amateur Championship testify, the Northern Irishman will oversea the crop

of talent in the United Kingdom sharing his advice and experience to help the players achieve their potential. Rafferty, now 54 and a regular on the European Senior Tour, said: “I am very happy to join the adventure. I can’t wait to share my experience and skills with the competitors. I really look forward to our collaboration.” The tour is now its third year and features six 36-hole tournaments across the world.

Goat caddies – are you kidding? No it isn’t April 1 – The Retreat & Links at Silvies Valley Ranch in Oregon are set to introduce goat caddies this summer! Professionally trained American Range Goats are being trained to ‘take golf to the next level’ according to Ranch owner Dr Scott Campbell. This special herd, born and raised at the ranch, will have specially designed packs to carry balls, tees, drinks and a handful of clubs. But they won’t be subjected to an 18 hole slog as they are for guests playing the resort’s seven-hole challenge course – McVeigh’s Gauntlet. The PGA Professional

| March 2018

“We’ve been developing an unprecedented caddie training program with our head caddie, Bruce LeGoat, to ensure that he and his team are ready for the opening of The Gauntlet this summer,” said Dr Campbell. “We’re truly redefining both goat and golf operations at the ranch. Can you think of another course where its caddies were literally born, raised and fully educated on-property? We will get you a caddie who really knows the course and won’t give you any bad advice – and they work for peanuts!” 15

Climate change predicts devastating consequences for UK’s links courses BRITAIN’S FAMOUS LINKS COURSES could be swept away by the end of the century according to the UK’s leading environmental organisation. The Climate Coalition’s Game Changer report has claimed that the likes of St Andrews and Royal Troon could be under water by 2100, and it predicted that the impact will be felt greater in Scotland, where more than one in six of its 600 courses are along the coast. The report, which adds that six of the UK’s seven wettest years on record have occurred since 2000, predicts that “golf courses will crumble into the sea”. “Climate change is already impacting our ability to play and watch the sports we love,” said the report, adding that extreme weather is a factor in declining participation and lost revenue. Professor Piers Forster, director of the Priestley International Centre for Climate at the University of Leeds, said: “Climate change is already affecting the historic game of golf in its birthplace. “Without cutting the carbon emissions driving climate change, sea levels will rise by over a metre and extremely wet winters will become the norm. “Many aspects of our lives including the game of golf would struggle to adapt to such a changed world.” A number of golf bodies are already taking action to


combat the impact of climate change and to make golf more environmental and ecologically sustainable. The ten courses on the Open Championship rota have all attained GEO Certification, administered by the Golf Environment Organisation. The Climate Coalition, which is made up of more than 130 groups ranging from the National Trust and the Women’s Institute to WWF, the RSPB, Greenpeace and Oxfam, is releasing the report as part of its ‘Show The Love’ campaign, which celebrates things people love but that could be lost due to climate change.

Nicklaus takes a back step

What you looking at Punk!

JACK NICKLAUS is to take a step back from the business he founded almost 50 years ago. The 18-time major winner, now 78, will remain as Co-Chairman of the Nicklaus Companies, while investor Howard Milstein will assume the role of Executive Chairman. The Nicklaus Family will continue to be the majority owner of the Company, with Emigrant/Milstein being a significant investor, and Jack Nicklaus II and Gary Nicklaus continue to serve as members of the Board. The Jack Nicklaus and Golden Bear-branded products are not exclusive to golf equipment, course design and academies but has also expanded to lifestyle products including ice cream, restaurants, beverages, wine, home appliances, apparel and footwear.

Rebellious golf magazine Golf Punk is set to return to the shelves from May – after an absence of almost 10 years! A huge hit more than a decade ago, it disappeared from the shops in 2008 – before being resurrected as, a webonly format in 2012 by founder Tim Southwell. However, Golf Punk is poised to establish a monthly online magazine (it launched last month) which is available on Issuu as well as the eagerly-awaited print version.

Are you targeting the right social media platform? WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME you undertook a social media audit – to ensure your marketing tactics were hitting your desired target audience? A report by social media analysts eMarketer has found that around 700,000 teenagers and young adults (12-24 year-olds) will desert the platform this year – while it will see significant growth by the over 55s. Numbers are still huge for the UK’s largest social media platform with 2.2 million 12to 17-year-olds and 4.5 million 18- to 24-year-olds regularly using Facebook in the UK, however Snapchat is gaining more of the youth market. The growth in the over-55s on Facebook, means it will be the second largest demographic on the platform. Facebook remains the most popular social networking site in the UK by some distance with 32.6 million total regular users this year. Instagram’s user base will grow from 15.7 million to 18.4 million, Snapchat will surge from 14.8 million to 16.2 million while Twitter will grow from 12.4 million to 12.6 million. Read this month’s Social Media section page 53 to get you on track…

New boss for Scottish Golf Scottish Golf has appointed Andrew McKinley as its new chief executive following his ‘transfer’ from the Scottish Football Association. McKinley, most recently as Chief Operating Officer and Interim Chief Executive at the Scottish FA, joins after rigorous three-month search to replace Blane Dodds, who left to take up a similar role with Tennis Scotland.

St Andrews to host 150th Open Championship Time running out to enter the 2018 Open Championship PLAYERS harbouring their dreams of playing in this year’s Open Championship being held in Carnoustie, have until 31 May 2018 to complete their entry form. Regional Qualifying, being staged at 13 courses across Great Britain and Ireland, takes place on June 25th. Final qualifying is on July 3 and at four venues – Notts (Holinwell), St Annes Old Links, Prince’s and The Renaissance Club. More details at 18

THE R&A has announced that the historic 150th Open Championship in 2021 will be played at St Andrews. It will be the 30th time in the tournament’s long and proud history that St Andrews’ famous Old Course has staged the event having first hosted it in 1873. The four-day tournament will run from July 15-18. The R&A chief executive, Martin Slumbers said: “The Open holds a very special place in the hearts of golf and sports fans around the world. The Championship enjoys a historic and celebrated relationship with the Old Course in St Andrews and we are excited to be marking the occasion of the 150th Championship at the home of golf in 2021.”



Ready for action T

he custom of playing first when furthest from the hole or having the honour on the tee in stroke play events is set to join hickory-shafted clubs and gutta-percha balls as golfing relics with the introduction of The R&A’s ‘Ready Golf’ initiative to speed up the game, writes Adrian Milledge.

Aside from cheating and the vagaries of the game itself, if anything is capable of getting the most mild-mannered of golfers into a club-abusing lather it has to be slow play. As well as being frustrating to watch a player in the group ahead taking a succession of practice swings then, checking his or her distance measuring device, change clubs and then repeat the pre-shot routine, it adds to the time a round of golf can take. Similar scenarios include players standing on the green ready to putt while another member of their group hacks his way through a succession of bunkers before joining them. Indeed, there are countless other examples of time-devouring practices on the course that can contribute to rounds of

The PGA Professional

| March 2018

five hours plus. Add to that the time taken getting to and from the course, a pre-round bacon sarnie and a sherbert or two afterwards, and a day has effectively been written off. All of which has to be detrimental to participation in the game, especially among younger people with family commitments to consider. Which is why The R&A is addressing the problem and doing so with a twopronged attack. In addition to encouraging golfers to play rounds comprising nine holes as opposed to the traditional 18, the game’s rule makers are championing ‘Ready Golf ’. The ‘Ready Golf ’ initiative is part of The R&A and USGA’s Rules modernisation process that began five years ago and is designed to bring the sport’s Rules up-todate to fit the needs of the game globally. Commenting on the ‘Ready Golf ’ aspect

of the proposals, Duncan Weir, executive director - golf development at The R&A, said: “Our research has shown that golfers would enjoy the sport more if it took less time to play. “As part of the Rules modernisation process we have recommended changes which are designed to have a positive impact on pace of play and ‘Ready Golf ’ features among those proposals.” In contrast to some of the game’s rules and the difficulty in interpreting them correctly, the concept of ‘Ready Golf ’ could not be more straightforward. Simply put, it’s a case of play when you’re ready not when the Rules of Golf decree, namely ‘the farthest from the hole plays first’. ‘Ready Golf ’ is appropriate for stroke play formats but not match play due to the strategy involved between opponents and the need to have a set method for


determining which player plays first. It includes a number of actions that separately and collectively improve times for players completing a round (see panel on page 21). The concept has been trialled in a number of events in Great Britain and Ireland, not least in August 2016 by the Golfing Union of Ireland (GUI) to improve pace of play in the second round of the AIG Irish Close Championship staged on the Glashedy Links at Ballyliffin. Windy conditions on day one meant the average round time was five hours 15 minutes, more than 50 minutes longer than the time par of four hours 25 minutes for the course. Having identified the challenges facing the players, the GUI implemented a directive to play ‘Ready Golf ’ during the next round in order to improve the pace of play. Before the second round started, players were instructed: “If you reach your ball and are ready to hit, while other members of your group are not yet prepared, then go ahead and hit - even if you are not away – provided it is safe to do so.” The GUI also opted for a a two-tee start in two waves (0800-0955 and 1300-1455) and 10.5-minute average starting intervals (10 minutes, then 11 minutes, then 10 minutes, then 11 minutes, and so on) were introduced.


As a result, the average time for a round on day two dropped by 45 minutes to four-anda-half hours with the fastest time coming in at four hours and 10 minutes. Although ‘Ready Golf ’ did not solve all issues during the event, the directive was well received by the players. Mark Wehrly, the GUI’s championship manager, explained: “We had the starters brief the players using a note which was basically an abridged version of what was in The R&A’s Pace of Play manual. “Some players took really well to it. Others hadn’t heard of it and were therefore a little uncertain so we had the referees watch out for the first few groups and advise them on how to implement it properly. “In terms of the speed of play it gave us a much better start to the morning and afternoon waves. The result was that everyone played quicker, the round times and averages went down significantly. “Admittedly other factors were in our favour for day two - the wind was less severe and players generally play quicker on the second day in our experience.


Ready Golf is a fun and faster way of getting round the golf course - but only when it’s safe and appropriate to do so. It is neither a breach of



etiquette nor a race

Andrew Coltart, Two time European Tour winner and TV commentator

“But there was a definite improvement and I think it was culturally important for us to encourage it from the first tee. The feedback from players and from our clubs who watched developments was, on the whole, very positive and encouraging. “I would say ‘Ready Golf ’ is worth considering as part of an overall strategy including course set-up, draw management and enforcement of pace of play conditions.” ‘Ready Golf ’ is due to become a Rule of Golf next year although England Golf is already implementing the concept in its tournaments. “We’ve been using ‘Ready Golf ’ since the back end of 2016,” confirmed James

Ian Poulter



Crampton, championship director, England Golf. “We’ve got quite a stiff pace of play policy in our championships anyway and the ‘Ready Golf ’ aspect is part of that. “We tend to find we implement ‘Ready Golf ’ not when play is going along OK but when we need to get groups to catch up with the ones in front of them. “Our pace of play policy defines a group as being out of position if they are not keeping pace with the group in front in relation to their start times. “If a group is not keeping pace our referees do tend to get on to them pretty quickly. “It’s at that point when the referee tells the players they need to get back into position as quickly as possible that ‘Ready Golf ’ is adopted. “We find that’s when it’s most useful – it’s astonishing how quickly a group can get back into position when they adopt ‘Ready Golf ’. That works really well. “In fairness, we really haven’t got a pace of play issue in our championships – we have a pretty strict policy as to how we get players around. “We do a number of things slightly differently to other organisations and are getting full fields of 144 players round regularly in four hours 20 minutes, four hours 30 minutes maximum. “I’d like to think we’re on the quicker end of tournament organisers when getting big groups of players around in a reasonable time. ‘Ready Golf’ is just one aspect of what we do.” Although England Golf implements ‘Ready Golf ’ as a safety net to maintain pace of play, players have the option to adopt it from the start. “Our local rules in last year’s championships included reference to ‘Ready Golf ’, so it is there for players to adopt from the very onset,” Crampton added. “Obviously a player’s mindset is to play when it’s his or her turn so it’s a gradual process getting the message across.” And, as far as Crampton is concerned, when ‘Ready Golf ’ in stroke play events becomes mandatory as opposed to optional, The PGA Professional

| March 2018


there lies the challenge. “‘Ready Golf ’ is going to form part of the Rules of Golf from next year,” he explained. “I believe it’s going to be a Rule of Golf around pace of play and that’s a good thing. “The challenge for us is to get the players to adopt it all the time – it’s not something to be used when there’s a problem but from the very beginning. “We will get our starters to make reference to it on the first tee and embed it into players’ routines that they can just go ahead and play. “Any difficulty we have is changing the mindset of the players. The fact they can go and play when ready is not what they are used to.” The positive reaction from England Golf, GUI and experiences in their amateur championships is confirmation for The R&A that the introduction of ‘Ready Golf ’ is a change for the good. “We are continuing to advocate solutions which improve pace of play at all levels of the sport and ‘Ready Golf’ has been demonstrated as an effective means of reducing the time it takes to complete a round,” added Weir. “So we are pleased to have produced encouraging results and positive feedback from golfers and administrators following the introduction of ‘Ready Golf’ into the stroke play rounds of our amateur events last year.” Closer to home, The PGA is also planning to adopt Ready Golf in its tournaments before it becomes a Rule on January 1, 2019. “We will be promoting ‘Ready Golf ’ at all of our PGA events this season in an effort to improve pace of play not only in stroke play events but in pro-ams as well,” confirmed Ben Groutage, the Association’s head of tournaments. “For many years now we have been advocating the idea that players should be ready to play when it is their turn to play. “‘Ready Golf ’ will go one step further and say if you are ready to play and it is safe to do so, then go ahead. “The responsibility for pace of play has often rested with the officials who determine things like course set-up, starting intervals and a timing policy.

Examples of ‘Ready Golf’ include: Hitting a shot when safe to do so if a player farther away faces a challenging shot and is taking time to assess their options. Shorter hitters playing first from the tee or fairway if longer hitters have to wait. Hitting a tee shot if the person with the honour is delayed in being ready to play. Hitting a shot before helping someone to look for a lost ball. Putting out even if it means standing close to someone else’s line. Hitting a shot if a person who has just played from a greenside bunker is still farthest from the hole but is delayed due to raking the bunker. When a player’s ball has gone over the back of a green, any player closer to the hole but chipping from the front of the green should play while the other player is having to walk to their ball and assess their shot. Marking scores upon immediate arrival at the next tee, except that the first player to tee off marks their card immediately after teeing off.

“However, the only way we are ever going to see a consistent, positive impact on round times is if that responsibility is shared by the players themselves. “We are really hoping to see some positive results and ultimately increase everyone’s enjoyment of the game.” *The R&A introduced the Pace of Play manual for golfers, administrators and golf course managers earlier this year. You can find out more about ‘Ready Golf’ and other recommendations to improve the pace of play by visiting RulesEquipment/Pace-of-Play/Manual.



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Amateur Golfers to Play on Golf’s Greatest Stage at Carnoustie


lub golfers throughout Great Britain and Ireland are being offered the chance to sample what the world’s top golfers will experience in this year’s Open Championship at Carnoustie.

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They will be the winners of qualifying events in The R&A’s 9 Hole Championship staged at their clubs and played over nine holes. The competition is central to The R&A’s drive to promote this form of golf as an ideal way to enjoy playing the sport in less time, either recreationally or competitively for handicap purposes. The Stableford-format final will be contested by 21 pairs tackling the first four and last five holes of the Championship Course at Carnoustie on the Saturday before the 147th Open starts on July 19. The final will also feature Ready Golf, which can be used in stroke play and includes a number of actions to improve the flow of golfers around the course and speed up play. Commenting on the initiative, Duncan Weir, executive director golf development at The R&A, said: “Nine hole golf is continuing to grow in popularity among golfers. “As a result we are encouraging clubs throughout Great Britain and Ireland to offer men, women and juniors more opportunities to enjoy this shorter format of the game, both socially and competitively. “Following the success of last year’s event, we are working with our affiliates in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales to support more clubs holding qualifying events for their members with the incentive of playing one of world’s most renowned courses ahead of The Open.” Qualifying events are open to men, women, boys and girls who are club members with a CONGU handicap. Please visit for more information.

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The PGA Professional

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Player Performance Study


mateur golfers are more likely to become better players if they speed up their game, according to new research carried out by Dr Matt Bridge. A Player Performance Study conducted by leading audit, tax and consulting firm RSM, in collaboration with the European Tour, found players who took less time over the ball before a shot could earn €189,000 more during the season. Led by Dr Bridge, senior lecturer in coaching & sports science at the University of Birmingham and PGA level one volunteer, the study involved watching 21,000-plus shots from more than 300 rounds of golf during the 2016/17 European Tour campaign. “What we were trying to do is understand performance in professional golfers,” Dr Bridge explained. “We wanted to understand what drives performance in elite golfers on the European Tour.” As well as providing valuable information for professionals, Bridge is convinced the data and subsequent findings can also benefit amateurs. He continued: “Players are often fixated on the outcome rather than thinking about the process that leads to it. “Part of that process is amateurs having a good pre-shot routine and working with their PGA Professional can help them. “Amateurs spend an awful long time over the ball at address. If we think about how we can make that a little bit shorter, they may play better shots. “One of the key reasons for that is as golfers we stand over the ball. If we hang around the ball a little bit what tends to happen is thoughts come into our heads and you think about the bad outcome. So you change your technique which alters how you move the club and leads to a poorer shot.” Launched and concluded at the British Masters in 2016 and 2017 respectively, the 24

study explored a number of factors with the potential to affect golf performance. This included time spent at address, player behaviour, practice and pre-round routines. The key findings found players quicker over the ball tend to play better shots, which led to Bridge and his team focussing on the importance of a pre-shot routine. “When players were a little bit quicker than normal, they made 16 per cent more good putts,” Bridge revealed. “If we look at par-five approach shots, they hit 20 per cent more greens when they are a little quicker over the ball compared to what they usually are. “We looked at the kind of behaviours different players have. How many times did they look to the target? Was there a firm club choice? How many practice swings were there and where did they take place? “The key measure for us is the time they spend over the ball at address. From the club going behind the ball through to impact – how long is that time and if it varies, does that impact shot performance?” The University of Birmingham and Bridge, in particular, have been working in collaboration with The PGA on education and the development of its professionals for almost 17 years. Bridge, 41, was approached by the European Tour because of those strong links with The PGA. It gave him access to a number of high profile players: 43 took part including PGA Member Paul Lawrie and Andy Sullivan. “We asked players if they wanted to get involved and understand more about their performance. “We tried to get a spread of players because one of the key findings is what happens around the cut line. What is the difference between making and missing the cut? “We followed some players who were rookies while others were seasoned veterans. “As well as collecting data inside the ropes,

Dr Matt Bridge

we’ve been able to talk to players about their shot and practice routines and preparation.” Bridge will continue to work with players and coaches at all levels to improve performance and wants to work with RSM and the European Tour again. He added: “The PGA and the University of Birmingham are committed to finding out more about golf and doing research. “It shows the commitment the University has to understanding golf and research into it, but we wouldn’t be able to do this if it wasn’t for our collaboration with The PGA.”

RSM Player Performance Study – Key Findings n Spending less time over the ball could earn a European Tour player an extra €189,000 per season. n Quicker shots improve performances. Shorter times over the ball across all putts results in a 90 per cent increase in the likelihood of strokes gained. n Consistency of time spent over the ball leads to a greater chance of making the cut. Players more consistent in rounds one and two are 50 per cent more likely to make the cut.

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Getting a Grip T

ed Maher, the head PGA Professional at Great Barr Golf Club in the West Midlands tells Adrian Milledge how his regripping service and support from Golf Pride is benefitting his business.


As well as featuring a wide selection of grips of varying colours, textures and costs, the stand includes a grip bar that has grips attached to shafts. “Grip Pride are brilliant,” says Maher. “They offer us a load of support and this grip bar has been a game-changer in my opinion. “We used to sell grips with no support inside them and it was difficult for the customer to get a real feel for them. Grips on the bars, however, allow the customer to feel exactly how the grip would feel on their clubs. They look good as well with the baskets of grips underneath.” The presence of an eye-catching display stand dominating one of his pro shop walls, however, is just a stage of the journey en route to closing a regripping sale. “Some of our customers just don’t know

when to renew their grips,” Maher explains. “The stand is just one way we encourage our members to re-grip their clubs. “We educate them as well. That can be in our newsletter or face to face.


They offer us a load of support and this grip bar has been a game-changer in my


The internet has a lot to answer, good and bad. Not least for PGA pros. In some instances it can be boon when spreading their skills as coaches, giving feedback to students, or promoting themselves via websites and social media. In others, the lack of expensive overheads in terms of well-equipped and buyer friendly premises means internet traders can undercut the price of the shiny new clubs and colourful clothing on sale in pro shops. There is one thing the ubiquitous world wide web cannot accomplish, however. That’s regrip a golf club – a process that golfers who play on a weekly basis are advised to have done annually. And with grips costing from £6.50 to £14 and, in Ted Maher’s case, taking him on average half-an-hour to re-grip a full set of clubs, the exercise can be a nice little earner. “It one of the biggest parts of my business,” says Maher, the head PGA Professional at Great Barr Golf Club in the West Midlands. “One of my goals when I took over as head pro three years ago was to boost the regripping side of the business. “As a result we’ve grown it from being quite small to something we do that’s very profitable.” In addition to his own efforts and that of his assistant Tom Palmer, Maher is indebted to the support he has received from Golf Pride and Craig Watson, the company’s territory sales manager for the UK. “We’ve had loads of support from Craig at Golf Pride,” Maher confirms. “He came to our captain’s day and offered free grips to the members. The ratio of those guys coming back to have full sets done was incredible.” Watson who, in common with his boss Conor Dillon, is a PGA pro, also equipped Maher with a Golf Pride grip wall for his shop.


Ted Maher, head PGA Professional Great Barr Golf Club

Tom Palmer (left), Ted Maher (right)


“We also see a lot of people coming through the shop or in the studio and are able to advise them. “And coaching is also a good opportunity – we get to see their clubs when we coach them and we can tell straight away what condition their grips are in. “We can show and compare their grips with a new one – and how it would feel. They’re very receptive – a lot better than I envisaged. “As long as you educate them and take them through a process they understand the value of grips and how they can help them to improve their game. “We rarely see people who give us clubs and tell us to re-grip them. We follow a process of size, type of grip, their playing style and fit the grip to that individual.”

Another grip in the wall Golf Pride, a PGA Official Supplier, is the dominant force when it comes to supplying golf club grips. So much so that its market share hovers around the 80 per cent mark. Conor Dillon, the company’s regional manager EMEA, has no doubt PGA pros play a key role in that domination. “PGA pros are at the heart of everything we do,” he says. “Eighty per cent of all consumers go to their PGA pro seeking advice as to how to find the right grip. “It’s not about finding one size of grip fits all – there are a number of things to take into consideration. The texture of the grip, the sizing of the grip – the PGA pro can help the consumer. “We have raised the overall awareness of re-gripping in the pro shop. We feel it’s very much an educational process which we provide. The grip walls have been key to getting the message across. Typically, three or four years ago, grips would be kept out of sight in the workshop. Now everything is on display in the shop. It’s all about raising the importance of re-gripping and the benefits it has for golfers. “PGA pros also use their expertise. They know about a customer’s swing and what size to fit. “The great thing about these grip displays is they feature all the different sizes and textures. “They have been very important for Golf Pride’s growth over the last two or three years. That because they give the consumer a lot of choice, which is what it’s all about. “As for the displays - we supply them free of charge. If a pro expresses a keen desire to offer that service to their members, we’d be glad to have that conversation.”

A nice little earner Fitting a Golf pride MCC grip: Cost of grip to pro £6.29 (inc VAT) Retail price of grip £12.00 Profit per grip

£5.71 (47 per cent gross margin)

Re-gripping a full set: 13 grips x £5.71 = £74.23 profit. As opposed to a half hour lesson @£25.00.

The PGA Professional

| March 2018



Golf Pride in alignment with Tour pros PGA PARTNERS GOLF PRIDE has responded to feedback from pros by infusing the #1 grip model on Tour, the Tour Velvet, with its revolutionary ALIGN Technology. ALIGN Technology, which was first introduced in the flagship MCC and MCC Plus4 grip families last year, features a dedicated raised ridge that extends down the back of the grip. This facilitates consistent hand placement and gives the golfer increased clubface awareness throughout the swing and at impact. It also features a unique micro-diamond texture and firmer material compared to the surrounding grip area to amplify its pronounced feel. A flex channel separates the ALIGN Technology ridge from the grip body to maximise elevation lift and lock the grip into the fingers, while conforming to the rules of golf.

The MCC ALIGN and MCC Plus4 ALIGN grips not only proved hugely popular with Tour pros last year but also successful. Jonathan Neal, global head of marketing for Golf Pride Grips, explained: “We received incredible feedback from Tour players and amateurs last year about our MCC ALIGN and MCC Plus4 ALIGN grips. “We even saw a major victory in the first week the technology was put in play on the Champions Tour. “As a result we had a countless number of players request that we make ALIGN Technology available in other models. Introducing it to the Tour Velvet model proved an intricate process, however.

Giving putting a helping hand SPECIALIST GRIP manufacturer G-Rip have a range of putter grips designed to enhance feel, feedback and control in the putting stroke. The innovative FL1’s triangular shape gets the hands into the correct position on the putter every time, the over sized ST1 grip is bigger at the bottom end to help quieten the right hand, preventing the dreaded yips. The ultra lightweight Fat Wave allows the full weight of the putter head to be felt in the putting stroke and the oversized MP1 will suit those preferring a bigger putter grip. The Big Wave is a water repellent traditional style pistol grip, tacky to the touch but firm in the hand which encourages a soft grip on the putter enabling the max feedback from the putting stroke. And its not just putter grips, the A-Tac grips are perfect for playing in wet weather. The grips have a very tacky feel and when dried with a towel the compound becomes even tackier. The Mentor training grip is great for getting the basics right by encouraging holding a golf club in the correct manner allowing it to be swung on the right plane. 28

Neal added: “While this sounds easy, bringing the product to market required state-of-the-art material development along with innovations in our manufacturing processes to ensure premium performance and quality. “Our R&D team worked rigorously in the lab to ensure that a player would keep the same feel and texture they have come to love in the Tour Velvet with the added benefit that ALIGN Technology delivers. “With the addition of Tour Velvet ALIGN to this incredibly innovative family, we’ve ensured that ALIGN Technology is offered in a diverse range of feel and performance options.”

Gripping innovation at Pendulum Golf IN A MARKET flooded with every grip imaginable and restricted by golfing regulation, you’d be forgiven for thinking there was no room for innovation. Yet Pendulum Golf’s two PGA Professionals, owners Kyle Potter and Jack Landauer, have achieved just that with their innovative ‘Wedge Grips’ and ‘Putter Grips’, which are specifically designed to improve your short game. “The top exponents of the short game agree it’s all about feel and that’s encouraged by repeating the same grip every time,” Landauer explained. “Putters grips encourage that, but we’ve taken things further with soft feel grips for both putters and wedges, designed to maximise feel while ensuring consistent holding of the grip.” Potter added: “We call it the V-Line design: a central line for thumb placement and a V-Line for the finger placements. “We developed the initial designs 18 months ago, had them made by a specialist manufacturer, tested them, got them patented and made them market ready. “By creating grips for wedges as well as putters, we’ve achieved something that’s never been done before; Our grips enhance your short game feel by enabling lighter grip pressure. “Each grip has the same design and material, with the wedge grips specifically designed for your short game shots.”


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concentrated in the golf market, where it has earned plaudits

or as stretch inserts in

in equal measure, developing materials of premium quality and

strategic spots. For the “off

designs of exceptional imagination.

course” moments, we have a small

In the AW 18/19 Collection, Chervò maintains its reputation for cutting-edge materials and vibrancy, with the men’s colours

selection of Happy Goose jackets with fashion details and design.

displaying moods of acid green, electric blue,

“All fabrics, solid or printed, are water

greys from melange to shark, black and ‘red

repellent and wind proof, thanks to the water drop finish and the very tight weaving type. The happy

carpet’, all matched with navy blue. The ladies’ AW 18/19 Collection is equally energetic, with vivid yet feminine

winter days.”

colours such as cabaret fuchsia,

Chervò’s AQUA-BLOCK protects the men’s Macchi jacket

Picasso purple and acid green

courtesy of the two-way mechanical stretch, 100 per cent

blended together in a melting pot

Polyamide waterproof laminated fabric TL41 and with a thermo brushed lining, which provides the best insulation for total

with shades of black. “Without climbing the cliff


of adversity, one cannot arrive

The trademark WIND-LOCK technology developed in the

at the meadow of happiness”

men’s chic Macor jacket, coupled with a three-layer and four-way

is an old Tibetan proverb and

stretch soft shell fabric is crafted by bonding the fabric with a

the ladies’ ‘Magenta Tibet’ and

performance membrane which results in excellent waterproofing

‘Eternal Tibet’ themes capture

and moisture management qualities.


Chervò has continually broken new ground over the years

their warm colours, reminiscent of

and featured on the ladies’ top items is the T13, a special

Buddhist monks’ robes and prints,

melange fabric that is 100 per cent nylon, while the special knit




and wind-lashed rock formations, while Blue Spirit draws inspiration from the unforgiving Himalayan chain with its incredible views of glaciers, rivers and snowcapped mountains. At the heart of Chervò’s creations is a strong focus

The PGA Professional

goose flakes make these garments ready for chilly autumn-

| March 2018

construction provides an extremely soft and elastic finish. Chervò is available at around 1,000 multi-brand venues worldwide, and is established as the leading golf and leisure apparel brand in Italy as well as numerous other European countries including Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium and Spain. In addition, it is available in pro shops at a selection of prestigious international golf clubs.

on comfort and innovative

For sales enquiries, please contact Louis Walcott

materials - an element that




Galvin Green combats climate change GALVIN GREEN, the leading premium technical performance golf apparel brand, has introduced groundbreaking layering technology into its latest collection to help serious golfers play to their best in all conditions. State-of-the-art fabrics in the new Interface-1™ hybrid range of shell layer garments provide golfers with exceptional levels of performance and protection. The versatility of Interface-1™ products is what truly sets them apart, allowing the jackets to be worn 95 times out of 100 rounds. The brand – Official Supplier of Weatherwear to the 2018 European Ryder Cup team – is also launching its softest waterproof jacket ever, plus body-mapped INSULA™ mid-layers for outstanding thermal regulation and striking Ventil8™ Plus shirts providing outstanding breathability. “The mission was to create a group of products that could be worn by golfers in 95 of 100 rounds they play, so they can enjoy playing the game more often in different weather conditions,” said CEO Christian Nilsson. “We set out to find new fabrics and design quality garments that will act as genuine performance-enhancing equipment when called upon out on the course and the latest Interface-1 jackets are in a class of their own when it comes to regular playing conditions,” he added. In a collection that contains almost 300 garments and accessories, there are a record 67 brand new lines (35 in the men’s range and 32 in the ladies’ collection), plus an enlarged junior offering. Full details of the 2018 Part One collection on sale next month can be found at:


PowaKaddy is top of the shops PGA OFFICIAL SUPPLIER POWAKADDY outsold all other electric trolley manufacturers in terms of units and by value in 2017 to confirm its position as the UK’s market leader. The report, compiled by Golf DataTech’s also confirms that, in comparison to its nearest competitor, PowaKaddy delivered higher average retail prices and margins for its retailers, whilst offering significantly faster stock turn. Headlining the pioneering brand’s successful 2017 was the introduction of the Compact C2, which proved the most successful electric trolley launch in the UK market for more than four years. The year also saw PowaKaddy launch the world’s first electric trolley with integrated GPS, the FW7s GPS. Commenting on the results, PowaKaddy CEO David Catford said: “We’ve had another excellent year and its testament to the work of everyone connected with the brand. “Our UK sales grew by 40 per cent year-on-year thanks to retailers making the most of our exciting new product launches and the ongoing impact of the switch to Lithium. “We’d like to thank every single one of our customers who have played a crucial role in promoting PowaKaddy and helping to take the brand to the clear No.1 position in the market. “While we’re incredibly pleased with the past year, we’re equally proud of the highprofit margins our trade partners continue to enjoy.”

Motocaddy’s website makeover Motocaddy has launched a website designed to help retailers and golfers find out more about its growing product range. The new fully-responsive site – viewable at - has been designed with the user-experience firmly in mind. With improved navigation and functionality, customers can easily access detailed product information, images and cuttingedge video content across the full-range of digital devices. It also offers the opportunity to share pages across all major social media platforms. “We’ve made a significant investment in the new site to keep up with increased demand from around the world,” said Oliver Churcher, marketing manager. “It’s represents a complete re-build of the site we introduced five years ago. The fresh, modern look epitomises our brand and the products we now have available on the market and it will prove to be the perfect resource for anyone wanting in-depth information on Motocaddy products.” 30



Volvik increases colourful collection

Putting aids hit the spot HOLE MORE PUTTS™ the high tech, portable solution to getting the ball in the hole launched two new products at the US PGA Merchandise Show, to huge acclaim. The company’s booth saw a steady stream of PGA pros and retailers from all over the USA trying out the new PutterFit and HMP (Coaching). Feedback received at last year’s show played a part in the development of the new products and marketing director, Robert Slade-Baker, said: “Hundreds of pros came to see Hole More Putts™ last year. “So we were delighted that so many came to see us again to try out the new products that they influenced. “After seeing the response last year we anticipated a busy show but we’ve been overwhelmed with the high level of interest and the number of firm orders taken at the show – all for March delivery.” One product, HMP (Coaching), is aimed at the PGA pro who is actively giving putting lessons and has a number of students on the books. It enables the tutor to create unlimited user profiles allowing them fast, easy access to a student’s information at any time. The other, PutterFit, is the new high-tech way for retailers to increase putter sales and to help customers select the putter that suits them best. After just a few putts, PutterFit calculates a PutterFit Index - a measure of the suitability of the putter to the golfer. The more suitable the putter is to achieving a square face and a consistently centered strike, the higher the PutterFit Index will be. For the retailer, it’s a simple way to ensure that the stock they carry is presented in its entirety to the golfer enabling them to make the best possible choice. The PGA Professional

| March 2018

VOLVIK, the market leader in multi-coloured performance golf balls, is expanding its highly successful VIVID golf ball range with the introduction of two more offering even greater spin and feel – the new VIVID Lite and VIVID Soft. Unlike the penetrating colours of the pioneering multicoloured VIVID balls, the latest three-piece premium balls from Volvik feature a new Soft Feel Matte Technology and exclusive Technicolour - the VIVID Lite in bright shades of orange, pink, yellow & blue and VIVID Soft in pink, green & white. The VIVID Lite is a true multi-performance golf ball. It offers golfers with a clubhead speed between 50-80 mph a mid-high trajectory and improved visibility – resulting in straighter ball flight and accurate dispersion off the tee. The 85 compression ball features 322 dimples and also provides mid-high spin to attack the flag and achieve complete control around the green. The VIVID Soft is an ultra-soft golf ball designed for players with swing speeds between 75-95 mph looking for more shot control. The powerful spin rate enables golfers to shape their shots with exceptional accuracy and a perfect mid-high ball flight trajectory. The 70 compression ball features a VU-X Urethane Cover with 336 dimples, as well as the Soft Feel Coating to create a stable putting feel. The new VIVD Lite and VIVID Soft balls join the present Volvik range of VIVID matte-finished balls, composed of the original VIVID and the VIVID XT, designed with low ball spin for extreme power and distance and used by professionals competing in the World Long Drive Championship.




GCQuad adds putting to its armoury Foresight Sports’ ground-breaking GCQuad launch monitor now produces data for every club in the bag as a result of the addition of a putting dimension. The Quad’s ultra-high-speed cameras capture every detail of the club delivery, along with the carry, skid and roll characteristics of the putt, with results displayed on the device’s integrated indoor/outdoor display screen or through any connected mobile or PC device. Just some of the club data measured and reported includes: club head speed, efficiency, angle of attack, horizontal path, delivery loft, delivery lie, face angle, ball impact location and closure rate. And for the ball, the system measures ball speed, launch angle, airborne time and distance, skid time and distance, time to full roll, back spin, forward spin, and side spins. “The new putting module further elevates the GCQuad as the most advanced launch monitor in the golf industry,” said Edward Doling, director of Foresight Sports Europe. “We are now able to measure and report an incredible array of putter delivery and putting performance data, all to our usual incredible level of accuracy. “Putting on the Quad is ready to go in less than a minute’s set-up time with no need to mount anything to the putter shaft. It’s also fully portable, meaning professionals and fitters can use it indoors in the studio or outside on the green, or both in a single lesson or fitting.” Foresight’s new putting module for GCQuad will be available in the UK from April at an RRP of £2,500 + VAT.

Hands on from GolfBuddy GolfBuddy has launched its most advanced ever handheld GPS, the VTX. The device, which has an RRP of £249.99, is packed with features including a full colour touch screen and ultra slim, lightweight design, making it simple to use and barely noticeable to carry. Its compact size of just 9.5cm x 5.6 cm and less than 1.5 cm deep means it slips easily into a pocket while being large enough to convey all the necessary information for the hole. Distance to front, centre and back of green, all hazards and full hole view with golfer’s position are clearly displayed to give all the information needed to tackle the hole ahead. Straying off course is also covered as GolfBuddy’s dynamic green view will give accurate distances from the angle of attack, even from another fairway. The device also includes a digital scorecard, details of 38,000 courses worldwide, 15 hour battery life and the option to receive information from male or female voices. 32

Evnroll at the double Evnroll has unveiled five new models including the MOI ER9-10K Extreme mallet that boasts double the Moment of Inertia (MOI) of many of the most popular high MOI head designs on Tour. “Moment of Inertia, is essentially an object’s resistance to twisting,” explained putter designer Guerin Rife. “For a putter, that translates to a rock steady swing p a t h and an enlarged area of forgiveness off the face. So all you have to do is aim. “I noticed more and more lately that many players on the PGA Tour are opting for high MOI oversized putter head designs. They have to stand over a four-foot putt worth $200k to $1m that will change their life. The pressure can be paralysing.” The nerves do not have to take over too much for an extremely costly miss, so highly stable putter designs that help to counter some of the potentially damaging effects of pressure and nerves make absolute sense. Many of the latest oversized super-stable head designs on Tour boast a 5,000 MOI. The ER910K Extreme mallet that Evnroll launched at the 2018 PGA Merchandise Show takes that figure and doubles it up to 10,000 MOI. To achieve ultra-high MOI it requires a really big putter head that is usually a combination of ultralight aluminium and stainless steel that is about three times heavier. The ER9 features a milled 6061 aluminium body with strategically located hollow cylinders running the length of the head from face to rear along the extreme heel and toe to receive sizeable steel weights. This design keeps the overall size down to manageable levels while still achieving an astonishing 10,000 MOI. The ER9-10K Extreme mallet will be available in three head weights according to shaft length (33” at 415 grams; 34” at 400 grams; 35” at 385 grams) with hosel options of either plumber neck or short slant neck. All new models will join the existing product line-up in April and be available in 33”, 34” and 35” lengths.



Club Car sets the Tempo PGA Partners Club Car has marked its 60th anniversary by launching its new golf car, Tempo™, at last month’s BIGGA Turf Management Exhibition in Harrogate. Featuring a rust-proof aluminum frame, new alloy wheels, premium comfort seats and spacious dashboard, as well as proven engineering and industry-leading durability, the new Tempo™ golf car is designed to deliver an enhanced ride comfort. In addition, the new vehicle includes Club Car’s industry-leading connectivity platform, Visage Fleet Management, which enables golf operators and their staff to simplify operations, control costs and maximise course efficiencies. The fully-connected technology also enables operators to monitor performance, track the entire fleet, control the speed of the vehicles and implement no-drive areas to prevent the cars from driving onto tees and greens to reduce maintenance cost and time.

Garmin’s band aid Garmin has launched the Approach X10, a comfortable golf band that comes preloaded with data for more than 41,000 courses worldwide. The device calculates precise distances to the front, back and middle of the green, as well as hazards on the touch-screen display. In addition it will automatically transition holes as users move from one to another and keep track of stats such as greens in regulation, putts and fairways, and measure shot distance. “The Approach X10 is a simple and intuitive band perfect for beginners just starting to learn the game, or for avid golfers who want a fundamental golf band used exclusively on the course,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of global consumer sales. “Even if you’ve never played the course before, the Approach X10 will give you the tools to swing with confidence.” To add another level of fun and competition, the Approach X10 is one of the many Garmin golf watches compatible with the new free Garmin Golf app that lets users compete in weekly leaderboards on any golf course. This allows users to compete against friends and fellow golfers on the same course, plus view other players’ ranks, scores, handicaps and more. As a result users can set up their own event and invite multiple friends to compete. The slim, comfortable and unobtrusive design features a one-inch touch screen display and the rechargeable battery can last up to 12 hours in GPS mode. RRP £159.99. The PGA Professional

| March 2018

Titleist opt for softly, softly approach Feedback from more than 19,000 golfers has played a key part in Titleist producing the softest-feeling golf ball in its category – the Tour Soft. The testers were given prototype balls for on-course evaluation and their findings presented to Titleist’s R&D department. This included a three-ball blind prototype test in January 2017 that led to some key insights toward the Tour Soft development. As a result Titleist have come up with an innovative design that combines the largest core ever engineered into on one its balls golf ball with ultra-thin cover technology. This provides responsive feel, very fast speed for commanding distance and excellent short game performance. In developing Tour Soft’s core, the Titleist golf ball R&D and operations teams were challenged to surpass previously accepted core size limitations in order to produce a ball that feels better and is longer or just as long as the competition. In addition, a new ultra-thin 4CE grafted cover made with TCU Process Technology generates advanced short game control while a new spherically-tiled 342 cuboctahedron dimple design, optimised for the new Tour Soft construction, delivers a penetrating trajectory and consistent flight. Tour Soft balls include white and highoptic yellow options with play numbers 1-4. SRP £32.00 per dozen.




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Effective Habits of Successful Golf Retailers


rofessional golfer, coach, mentor, technician, negotiator, brand expert, product demonstrator, manager, employer, motivator, business-person, retailer... Not many people can boast of a more varied job description than a PGA pro, but, as exciting as that sounds, the demands of such high expectations can be stressful. You might have entered the profession due to a love of the game but, more often than not, it’s your business skills and acumen, that will dictate your real success.

Good retail might be about buying and selling well, but great retail requires a vision that you plan for and work towards. The first step is to get into good habits that will help you to manage your time more effectively. REGULAR STOCK TAKES We can’t stress enough the importance of good stock management. Undertaking smaller regular, stocktakes throughout the year is perhaps THE single most important habit to establish for several reasons, including: 1 Highlighting any discrepancies as damaged or missing stock or unreceived orders 2 Staff involved in stocktaking will be more aware of the stock you are holding and thus easier for them to sell it on 3 It’s the only way to get a true picture of your actual business performance including which brands and products are/aren’t selling well. 4 Regular stock takes will help you review 36

upcoming orders. If an item isn’t selling, you will want to cancel any bookings you might have previously made 5 You need to aim to ‘turn over’ (sell) a stock item within three to four months of it coming into the shop. Regular stock takes can help with this strategy and will enable you to manage this proactively If you’ve been carrying out smaller, regular stock takes throughout the year, there shouldn’t be any nasty surprises at your financial year end. A sensible approach to stocktaking makes excellent business sense. We guarantee you’ll soon see the benefits. INVEST IN GOOD TECHNOLOGY Competition is tough and, to keep customers coming back, you need to be ahead of the game. A good point of sale system should be so much more than just a till – giving you the tools to manage and maintain stock, improve your margins, and provide the solutions you need to be a better retailer.

SHOW YOU KNOW YOUR CUSTOMERS Use your epos system to collect customer information against every sale. Knowledge is power when it comes to customers, and you can only buy the right products if you know who you’re buying for. Even the most basic analysis of data you manage to log, might reveal a surprising result. Peter Hancox, PGA pro at Chippenham Golf Centre, says: “We really appreciate the concept of ‘good information in, good information out’. By capturing data against customer sales and keeping on top of stock, we’re able to run reports that either confirm or challenge that gut feeling you have about what is or what isn’t selling.” TRANSFORM YOUR TEAM Don’t try to achieve all this on your own. Make sure your employees are working to your vision for the business: involve them, train them, and trust them. An employee who feels appreciated will always do more



In the Pro Shop with Oliver Hunt than is expected of them. Involve your team in decision-making; ask for their thoughts on new products; and make sure they know how to use the latest equipment that’s just arrived in the shop! Employees will be better sales people if they’re trained in all the kit, and kept up to date with new stock and instore decisions.


“If we weren’t still hiring great people and pushing ahead at full speed, it would be easy to fall


behind and become a mediocre company” Bill Gates

It’s never too late to establish good habits that will help to set you apart from the competition. Commit to a clear vision for your shop, put the habits and processes in place to make it happen, and make 2018 your best year yet.

Helping you to reduce stock, improve margins, and be a better retailer, XPOS is the ultimate epos system, designed specifically for golf shops. XCODES is Crossover’s unique live database of over 500,000 sports products; saving time and improving accuracy when creating stock items, and stocktaking.

The PGA Professional

| March 2018


liver has been at Headingly for 16 years: starting off as an Assistant and has now been the Head pro there for the past six years. We caught up with him two weeks after he was named TGI’s Partner of the Year at the buying group’s

annual conference.

Congratulations on your award. What’s the secret? Well, it’s definitely not one thing in isolation. I had a real shock a couple of years ago when, at the end of the financial year, we realised we were £10K down on the previous year, and I couldn’t work out why. So, we really pulled the figures apart and you’d be amazed at how the smallest changes can make a big difference. We realised we’d made quite a bit of money from Jelly Babies the previous year, but had taken them off the shelves the year after. We soon brought them back in. That’s just one example. Since then we’re always looking at new ways to improve what we do and offer the best service possible. Is there anything you do on a regular basis to the shop? One thing that works for us is that we change the shop around on a weekly basis. So, when the members come in on a Saturday, the shop looks slightly different to the week before. It might not be that we’ve received any new stock that week, but it keeps customers interested if they always see products differently. And what about systems you’ve put in place? I don’t hold onto too much stock. That’s a big thing. And in fact, we offer trade-ins so we’re helping customers to shift their own items. We’ve also started to capture whether a customer is a member or visitor, and we note that against every sale. In a few months’ time, we should get some interesting information back from this, that may, or may not, change the way

we do things. Apart from that, my assistant Josh, carries out stocktakes on about three products each week so we can keep on top of any potential discrepancies, and I run sales reports daily to put into my accounting system. And finally, what do you think gives you the edge? Again, it’s never one thing. But to compete in this tough environment you’ve got to offer something that the online sites can’t. Yesterday a member came into the shop and wanted soft yellow balls, but we didn’t have any. I went to another shop today and managed to swop some, so the gentleman will have his yellow balls when he comes in to play on Sunday. I want to prevent him from going online to get them, where he could buy himself some new shoes, or a wood, at the same time. Price-matching is something we also offer, and keeps customers coming back.

Oliver Hunt, head PGA pro Headingley Golf Club

With over 20 years’ experience of working with golf retailers worldwide, Crossover Technologies knows what a good golf shop looks like and will help you achieve it.





Autumn Winter 18

The trends to watch for


ifestyle, technological innovation and temperature controls are set to dominate golf fashion for the Autumn/Winter 2018 season. Golfers want comfort and versatility and manufacturers have set out to meet their requirements with stylistic, versatile ranges that match their lifestyles.

Versatility is proving all important when it comes to making clothing choices as modern life means golfers often having to combine business and pleasure without time to change. Stopping at the pub after a round of golf, walking the dog, shopping or heading into the office means clothing needs to be suitable for all occasions.

The PGA Professional

| March 2018

As Bunker Mentality point out: ‘Golf is moving very quickly to be a true lifestyle sport and players are looking to wear their jackets off the course and on it.’ Calvin Klein has also noted fashion is pushing the boundaries of traditional golf styles. Such adaptability can be seen in most ranges on offer for the new season. Some brands, such as G/FORE, are deliberately expanding their lifestyle focus. Recently acquired by Peter Millar, G/FORE has announced plans to broaden its appeal, making it a full lifestyle brand based on its golf roots. This includes introducing stylish new pieces like the variegated polos and range of shoes designed to be worn off the course. Comfort too is proving to be a key consideration. Adidas has targeted the two staples of golf apparel – trousers and polos – to create the Ultimate trouser and the Ultimate polo. Building on the success that made the Ultimate trousers the best in its category, the Ultimate polo targets everything golfers expect, such as consistency of fit plus unseen benefits such as moisture management and UPF 50+ fabric screening for sun protection.

The four-way stretch and durable stitch construction allows golfers to experience a balanced weight all round the course, with sufficient mobility during a golf swing. Jeff Lienhart, Adidas Golf president, says: “This is the best-fitting polo we’ve designed. We listened to players everywhere and put in just the right amount of everything players need – breathability, stretch, drape and weight. This polo is certainly worthy of the name.” Classic blues, blacks, whites and greys dominate the Autumn/Winter colour portfolio. Almost every shade of blue can be found appearing in clothing ranges, especially marine and sky blues. There are flashes of vivid pink appearing in Island Green, Calvin Klein and Bunker Mentality ranges, while Lindeberg include poppy reds and a luxurious deep burgundy. Calvin Klein also has some bright orange adding extra brightness to winter clothing. Some stripes and chevrons are to be seen but overall there is more focus on stitching details and contrasts around cuffs, zips and collars. Lindeberg is giving classic styles a new take with embellishments, pipings and side stripe details. Stylistic details such as the use of drop tail hems in Callaway’s AW18 ranges combine style with practicality, as it ensures a golfer’s back is not compromised by sudden cold draughts during the backswing and follow through. Keen golfers will play whatever the weather. However, getting cold can affect performance and bulky clothing that may hinder movement is a no, no. The wind chill factor can mean temperatures are lower than anticipated, making it harder to 39


concentrate, swing and move around, which is why the technical functionality of clothing is becoming increasingly important. Technical fabric innovation is very much at the forefront of AW18 ranges. Whatever the price point, AW18 ranges are incorporating technologically innovative fabrics designed to ensure golfers are always kept warm and dry. Moisture wicking fabrics are common, enabling moisture to be taken away from the skin to ensure comfort. Such fabrics are being used in all types of clothing. PING is typical in this respect. PING’s successful partnership with market-leading insulation brand PrimaLoft has meant it has expanded its involvement to develop a full range of premium high performance garments using this technology. In an equally innovative move in golf clothing design, PING has introduced a new PrimaLoft Performance Fabric Energy series combining the proprietary technology with soft flexible fibre blends to provide maximum stretch and recovery when playing. Even wool fibres for the knitwear ranges are now being technologically engineered as PING is using Zegna Baruffa Merino yarn plus H2Dry – a treatment which ensures comfort, wearability and easy care. Proof of the popularity of such innovative technology is FootJoy’s decision to carry through its DryJoys Tour LTS jacket and 40


increase the colour range. The combination of lightweight waterproof protection via a minimal fivepanel construction, stretch fabrication and temperature regulating properties has proved popular. Hybrid clothing involving a mix of fabrics is much in evidence. At Lindeberg, knitwear is a combination of coolmax, cashmere and nylon, while luxurious polyamide and nylon offer super thin, stretchy, breathable fabrics. Bunker Mentality’s Tech Hoodie combines stretch fabric on the sleeves and side panels to ensure easy movement. In addition, the quilted woven front offers warmth and style while the chevron design stitching detail makes it a perfect lifestyle item for use on and off the course. Over at Calvin Klein, stretch-lined WindBlock sweaters and Strike Tech Gilet and Jackets offer padding on the chest and back while stretch side panels and arms ensure flexibility. The Adicross range from Adidas features a Go-to Adapt jacket that adapts to a golfer’s needs. It is never too hot or cold and so versatile it can be worn for golf and general leisure. The key to its success is the use of hybrid fabrics. The top is made from a stretch woven, wind-resistant material, while the lightweight fleece on the lower part provides warmth. A heat seal covers the join where the two fabrics meet. Winter temperatures mean insulation for outerwear is essential. Such insulation no longer results in bulky jackets and gilets as innovative technology has created thermal efficient, lightweight fabrics, down padded and 100 per cent synthetic alternatives. PrimaLoft Silver Insulation Active is one of the most popular, used by various brands including Adidas as it incorporates millions

of air pockets trapping body heat in cold conditions, with a breathable layer so excess heat and moisture can escape. Bunker Mentality incorporates Clo-1 insulation materials, three-layer bonded fleeces, and CMAX high performance polyester fabrics with wicking properties. Callaway utilizes Thermore’s Thermal Booster to provide smart insulation, engineered to ensure a consistent level of warmth whenever temperatures fall. This innovative system involves a thermal boost in temperature whenever necessary to ensure the golfer is kept warm and comfortable. According to independent testing in laboratories, Thermore Thermal Booster is 20 per cent warmer at lower temperatures. Callaway is predicting these ranges incorporating Thermore Thermal Booster will be highly sought after. At Calvin Klein, meanwhile, InsuLite Technology is being used to ensure warmth and performance in midlayer clothing such as tops and smart-tec long sleeve polo shirts. Layering up is equally essential which means golfers are increasingly aiming to wear a selection of mid-layer items which can be added or taken off during a round. Several layers tend to be warmer than just one so manufacturers providing ranges of outer, midlayer and foundation clothing is on-trend. The potential range of suitable merchandise for stocking in store is considerable, with many new ranges being made available for the AW 18 season. Half-zipped tops are popular options while Glenmuir is majoring on luxury wool combinations like ‘Touch of Cashmere’. This combines cashmere with combed cotton and Italian merino to create a smart fibre that, stylish and practical, reacts to temperature changes. Classic white to pretty burgundy skirts make an appearance in J. Lindeberg’s AW18 range. Key to this concept is an attractive quilted bomber jacket and mini skirt. Combined with the brand’s Eleen Compression tights this creates an extremely stylish, yet practical outfit suitable for all but the most severe winter weather.



Golf Product Roundup Bunker Mentality aims to create lifestyle products built for ‘performance and style’ because performance is not enough. Outerwear takes on a sporty styling designed to be light, stylish with maximum breathability and warmth. Key items include the sporty Stance Wind Jacket made from the brand’s three-layer bonded fleece fabric, a smart Tech hoodie weatherresistant jacket, Kai gilets with rib necks allowing the garment to be worn under a jacket. Colour is to the fore with the Diagonal Quarter Zip mid-layer with its bright combinations of blue and white.

PING’s 2018 A/W range represents the brand’s most technologically advanced men’s and women’s collections to date. It has engineered a highly technical range, combining proprietary Sensor Platform fabrics and industry-leading apparel technology to create a refined, contemporary range offering quality, style and performance on and off the course. The eye-catching Norse PrimaLoft Zoned Jacket has been engineered for core warmth and wind protection. It’s Silver Active Insulation to the upper front and back combines with a lightweight, stretch outer fabric to ensure core warmth and freedom of movement throughout the swing. Combined with a breathable and water-resistant finish, this is the ultimate hybrid golf jacket. Another new fabric technology is Norse PrimaLoftFleece which, designed to move and retain shape thoughout the swing, delivers exceptional comfort and performance in mid layer. A key highlight of the women’s range is the Oslo PrimaLoft Jacket and Vest, both of which are insulated with Silver Insulation Active. Fashionable yet functional, these are engineered for uncompromising warmth and playability without bulk. The PGA Professional

| March 2018

PGA Partner Glenmuir has launched a knitwear collection based on classic styles using luxury yarns such as cashmere, lambswool and merino wool. ‘Touch of Cashmere’ combines cashmere and combed cotton to create an affordable and durable alternative to traditional cashmere while having its feel. Collection highlights are the Munro (£79.95) cable zip-neck ‘Touch of Cashmere’ sweater combined with Glenmuir tartan and the Graham (£84.95) crew neck birdseye stitch sweater made from British lambswool. Extra fine Italian merino smart fibres have been used to create a range of stylish, functional sweaters that react to temperature changes and allow golfers to stay warm in cold weather and vice versa. Claire Woods, Glenmuir head of design, explains: “This timeless classic collection is inspired by the expertise and knowledge passed down through generations. It captures elegant product design, fabric innovation and durable quality whilst maintaining the classic styling synonymous with Glenmuir.”

Colourful practicality marks the J.Lindeberg AW18 season with a focus on detailing, functionality and innovative pocketing, especially outerwear. The 2.5 ply-bonded rain gear range extends from a full zip jacket and pants to a fully functional sports bomber and a practical, M-65 inspired, four-pocket foldaway Parka. Highlights of the women’s range are a Jorie diamond quilted bomber jacket and Jade quilted nylon mini skirt, combined with a Gaia cashmere coolmax jersey and Eleen compression poly tights. Burgundy, white, and pink with blue contrasts make skirts, particularly pleated ones, a feature.



Warmth, breathability and mobility characterise Galvin Green’s AW18 collection. The highlight is the Diego INSULA™, a half-zip jacket shown here in a beluga with lemonade highlights on the arms, zip and outlining the zipped chest pocket. It provides thermal regulation and the snug fitting soft polyester offers warmth without restricting movement. Available in several colourways, it can be teamed with a Lawson bodywarmer.

Two main colour stories dominate the FootJoy AW18 range. Kauai has a base of navy and white with flashes of pink, while Vero features white, black and marine blue. The collection includes several thermal pieces including a water-resistant quilted jacket (95040) available in two colourways designed to merchandise neatly with the rest of the range: charcoal/marine and navy/white. The success of the FJ DryJoys Tour LTS jacket (95019) has ensured it is continued in AW18, with additional colour options.

Adidas aims to provide the ultimate solutions to winter cold and its latest ranges have matched the Ultimate Frostguard Trousers with Ultimate Polo shirts designed for all year round performance and comfort. Details like silicone gripper tape inside trouser waists ensure shirts stay tucked in. Engineered with fourway stretch and durable stitch construction, it offers consistency of fit whichever the style. 42


Perfect on and off the course, Chervo’s Episcopo Gilet features Happy Goose, Pro-Therm and Aqua Drop technologies. Although as soft as down, it is 100 per cent downfree, as it is padded with silky touch, lightweight synthetic flakes that are hygienic, easy care and heat retaining. The long lasting Aqua Drop resistant coating repels water and stains. Noiseless, stylish and offering total freedom of movement makes this ideal for active lifestyles.

Island Green is one of the fastest growing mid-market brands. AW18 has a selection of quilted gilets, long sleeve and quarter sleeve half zip tops, and waterproof jackets. Emphasis is on providing stylish four-way stretch mobility with moisturewicking fabrics. Prices are in the £30 to £60 range and orders can be replenished mid-season.

Boody, an Australian lifestyle brand offering sustainable, luxurious T-shirts and tops suitable for all purposes, is new to the sector. Made from a bamboo fibre, the fabric is softer than silk and kinder than cotton, moisture-wicking, breathable, thermo-regulating and ensures warmth during any outside activity. The range is suitable for those with sensitive skin as it is free from harmful chemicals.



Introducing FootJoy’s most powerful and comfortable shoe ever, featuring Tour-validated PowerStrap™ and LaunchPod™ technologies.



Tournament travel with your members THE MASTERS 2019 The ultimate bucket-list tournament experience, The Masters provides you with an excellent opportunity to escort a group of your members on this once in a lifetime golfing pilgrimage. For many golfers, it has been a lifelong dream to walk on the hallowed turf at Augusta National. Taking a group to experience the thrill of the world’s top players competing for the coveted Green Jacket has never been easier with a host of bespoke packages to suit all needs and budgets. Top Masters Tips

• Arrive early and get yourself a chair Get to the gates 30 minutes before opening time to ensure you are one of the first in. Once through the gates make sure you purchase a Masters chair for $30 from the nearest gift shop. With your seat in hand you can go and find a spot in the reserved ‘sitting only’ areas. Just leave a business card in the back of it and that is your spot for the day. You can go for a wander and no-one will touch your seat. • Visiting on a practice day? Make sure you spend some time around the par 3, 16th. It’s a great spot regardless but on practice days many of the players have some fun trying to skip shots across the water before getting their ball to pop out on the green. Practice days are also the only days you can take in a camera, so make sure you get plenty of snaps to show all your friends when you get back home. Where to stay

If you are wanting to be in the middle of the action and take in the atmosphere in Augusta for the week then there are numerous private residence options, just a stone’s throw from Augusta National. Another popular area to stay is Columbia, South Carolina’s biggest city and just an hour’s drive east from Augusta National. This vibrant city has a wealth of offcourse activities for your group to enjoy after an exhilarating day walking the fairways as 44

Event Information • Tournament runs Monday 8th to Sunday 14th April 2019 • Official practice days Monday 8th to Wednesday 10th April • Par 3 Championship Wednesday 10th April • Official tournament days Thursday 11th to Sunday 14th April

well as a great choice of hotels and numerous bars and restaurants catering for all tastes. Best places to eat & drink in Augusta

If you are staying in downtown Augusta then there are a number of bars and restaurants with a variety of food on offer. One of the most popular dining establishments is the Frog Hollow Tavern on Broad Street. Here your group can experience a menu that features substantial local and regional quality ingredients as well as having vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free offerings. If you fancy a nightcap, then the popular Whiskey Bar Kitchen, also located on Broad Street, offers exclusive whiskeys from the seven whiskey regions across the globe as well as a full service bar to keep your group hydrated! Getting there

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is the best option when flying over to watch the Masters. Located west of where all the action is, Augusta is approximately 2 ¼ hours & Columbia 3 ¼ hours’ drive away. There are direct flights to HartsfieldJackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) from London Heathrow & Manchester with Virgin Atlantic or British Airways. Flight time is approximately 9-10 hours depending on where you are flying from in the UK. You will also need to apply for an ESTA when travelling to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program. This can be done online and will cost $14 per application. This allows British Passport holders to visit the US for up

to 90 days. Hiring a car is the perfect option for getting around for your group, particularly as the majority of Masters packages include valet parking at Augusta to make life a whole lot easier. Playing golf

There are a host of top courses and golf resorts within a 3.5-hour radius of Augusta, perfect for bolting on to your Masters tournament package to enhance your trip and turn it into the ultimate golfing experience for your group. You can also add a coaching element to the golfing leg of your trip, enabling you to mark up your package further. The likes of Kiawah Island, Myrtle Beach & Hilton Head are within driving distance or there are a host of excellent courses in and around the Augusta area with our top picks being The Reserve Club & Houndslake GC. You will be spoilt for choice if you choose to extend your stay and take in some fantastic golf before flying home from what is likely to be the best trip your members will ever travel on! Sunday Masters Package 2019 • 3 Nights Bed and Breakfast • Ticket for the final day of The Masters – Sunday Ticket • Full Hospitality included • 18 Holes of golf locally on the Monday • Return flights and car rental • team will be onsite during the tournament • From £2,599 per person • As a PGA Professional receive 5% commission on the value of your Masters booking*




ournament travel is a great opportunity to escort a group of members away on an unforgettable experience. As a golf professional, offering golf travel as a service is a great way to strengthen your bond with members and clients as well as create an additional revenue stream for your business. Escorting a group to one of the main tournaments on the golfing calendar adds something extra special to a trip abroad and can also incorporate golf and coaching to complete the experience for your members.

THE RYDER CUP The Ryder Cup – the ultimate golf event, a once-in-a-lifetime bucket list trip. Nothing can match the thrill of watching a Ryder Cup live - the atmosphere, camaraderie and competitiveness is unrivalled by any other golfing event. With the 2018 Ryder Cup being held just a short distance away in France, there is a unique opportunity to host a once-in-a-lifetime experience for a group of your members to revel in the excitement of Europe battling to regain the Ryder Cup on home soil. Team Europe will be more motivated than ever to get revenge in front of the home crowd. Europe have lost just once on home soil since 1985, so despite the defeat at Hazeltine in 2016, they’ll be brimming with confidence in the build up to Le Golf National. Where to stay

Whether you want to stay close to the action or experience the cultural delights central Paris has to offer, there are plenty of hotel options on offer to you and your group. A popular option is the Hyatt Regency Paris Etoile, located a stone’s throw away from the heart of the city and boasting spectacular views of Paris from its panoramic roof top bar. If you would prefer to stay closer to Le Golf National, then the Versailles area of Paris ticks all the boxes. Only a 15-minute coach ride away from Le Golf National, Versailles is a popular choice amongst event goers and provides a perfect base for you and your group. Wherever you stay in this vibrant capital city, there will a vast number of top quality bars and restaurants littered within walking distance of your chosen hotel. From Michelinstarred restaurants to traditional cafes offering affordable French cuisine, Paris has everything and more to keep your members entertained in the evenings after watching all the action

Event Information • The Ryder Cup will be held at Le Golf National - on the outskirts of Paris in Versailles • Event runs 25th to 30th September 2018 • Official practice days are Tuesday 25th to Thursday 27th September • Official tournament days are Friday 28th to Sunday 30th September

unfold at Le Golf National. Getting there

Easily accessible by plane, train or ferry, the 2018 Ryder Cup is one of the easiest ever events to get to in continental Europe. Flights are available from most major UK airports as well as some regional ones to either Charles de Gaulle (CDG) or Orly (ORY) airport in Paris. Depending on where you are flying from, the average flight time from the UK is between 1 hour 15 minutes and 1 hour 45 minutes. Ten airlines offer direct flights from the UK including British Airways, EasyJet, Jet2 and Ryanair. If you would prefer to take the train, then you can hop aboard the Eurostar from Kings Cross and you will be in central Paris in 2 ¼ hours. If you fancy driving, then you and your group can take the ferry from Dover to Calais or the Channel Tunnel from Folkestone to Calais, getting you there in just 35 minutes. Central Paris is then a three hour drive away. Once there most Ryder Cup packages will include a free shuttle service to and from your hotel to the Le Golf National each day. Playing golf

Why not extend your stay in France by taking in some spectacular golf with your group before returning home after the Ryder Cup.

You can also add a coaching element to the second leg of your trip, enabling you to mark up your package further. The delights of Le Touquet and Hardelot in northern France are only a short 3-hour drive away and offer the likes of the scenic Le Touquet La Mere course and the beautiful Hardelot Les Dunes course. With great golf, great nightlife and superb value for money, northern France provides a fitting end to your group’s Ryder Cup trip. Or, for the ultimate luxury experience, you and your group can stay on in Paris and play four of the top 100 courses in continental Europe - Saint Cloud, Les Bordes, Morfontaine and Le Golf National. An experience your members will never forget! Ryder Cup Package • Tickets to final practice day and all full tournament days • 5 nights bed & breakfast at a 4* hotel in Paris • Daily transfers to/from Le Golf National • team will be on-site during the tournament • From £1,909 per person • As a PGA Professional receive 2.5% commission on the value of your Ryder Cup booking* • If you already have your Ryder Cup ticket, we can still help with the rest of your package

For more information on how the Golf Pro Travel Team at can help, please call 01753 752 880 or email

The PGA Professional

| March 2018




An Additional Service


ournament travel with a group of your members or clients can be very lucrative. Not only do you get to witness some of the best golfing tournaments first hand, you also get to add an additional service to your repertoire as a PGA Professional, cementing your position within your club and strengthening your bond with your clients. These once in a lifetime trips

offer the ultimate experience for your members and they will sing your praises for years to come!

Simon Edwards, PGA Professional and Peak Performance Consultant is no stranger to escorting groups of members and clients away on coaching and tournament breaks. In fact, he has taken a group to The Masters for the last two years. Here he gives us an insight into what a trip to The Masters is all about and the benefits of taking a group away. What prompted you to take a group to The Masters?

I had visited The Masters with Sam, my wife, in 2007 and it was a lifelong ambition to return to Augusta National during Masters week. I spoke to the team at and asked them to put a package together for 2016 for a group of seven plus myself. Working closely with the team we adapted the package until it was perfect and I started to sell it through my network of contacts. How did you market your Masters trip?

Using my network of clients that had either worked with me as their coach or clients that I had played tournaments with over the years, we filled the experience in a month. As word spread that there was an opportunity

to visit The Masters, the interest increased and we eventually took 10 clients. What did your Masters experience entail?

Our experience included four rounds of golf at Kiawah Island, which included the world famous Ocean Course followed by Saturday and Sunday at Augusta. In my opinion this is the perfect way to schedule the trip. The courses, accommodation and restaurants at Kiawah are truly world class and Augusta National is possibly the most fabulous venue on earth. How is tournament travel lucrative?

Staying at Kiawah Island allowed me to add a coaching aspect to this trip, which meant I could mark up the package for my coaching services. I also added a fee for organising and running the trip and looking after my clients when there, as there is a fair amount of work that goes into organising a trip of this level. I also needed to cover my earnings from my usual day to day job so all this was factored into the final price. Overall it is a great way to earn money and you get to experience probably the best tournament in the world! Would you recommend a multi stop trip for the ultimate Masters experience?

Simon Edwards, PGA Professional and Peak Performance Consultant


If any other PGA Professionals were thinking of taking a group to experience The Masters I would wholeheartedly recommend a week’s duration with at least four rounds of golf included. It is a long way to travel and a week is the perfect duration. There are packages that offer practice day or Thursday/Friday tickets but as a once in a lifetime experience you need to attend Masters Sunday and see the new champion receive the Green Jacket.

What were your first impressions of Augusta National?

The main things that you immediately notice about Augusta is how hilly the course is and how close the holes are together. I believe that this is why the atmosphere at the weekend is the best in the world. The other fabulous thing about the Masters is how good value everything is on site. A Masters Polo Shirt is around $50, a sandwich and a beer will cost $5. What’s the best vantage point on course?

The best vantage point at Augusta is behind the first green, second tee and ninth tee. It is a fabulous triangle and a very quiet area. What did your clients think to the trip?

Every client that joined the group had an experience that they will never forget and the feedback was exceptional. The trip was such a great success that I rebooked in 2017 and 12 clients attended that year. How did help you to put your Masters experience together?

I cannot recommend highly enough. The service from start to finish was exceptional. Nothing is too much trouble and even when we were over in the USA and a minor problem occurred, one phone call to the team and the solution was delivered inside an hour.


Top Picks

Fits like a second skin

France and USA FRANCE


Le Touquet Golf Resort • 2 nights bed & breakfast • 3 rounds of golf – Le Touquet La Mer, Le Touquet La Foret & Hardelot Les Dunes • Practice facilities available for coaching your group • From £229 per person • Pro goes free with 7 amateurs • As a PGA Professional receive 5% commission on the value of this booking

Enjoy the golfing delights of Northern France and take a group to stay and play at the stunning Le Touquet Golf resort. Just 45 minutes away from Calais and 5 minutes from the city centre, this resort is perfect for taking a group away for a long weekend. It also has great practice facilities on-site if you wish to run coaching clinics during your stay.


Terre Blanche Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort • 3 nights bed & breakfast • 3 rounds of golf • Practice facilities available for coaching your group • From £775 per person • Pro goes free with 7 amateurs • As a PGA Professional receive 5% commission on the value of this booking

This luxurious resort, situated in the picturesque hills of Tourettes, is only 35 minutes from the glamorous town of Cannes and 50 minutes from Nice airport. With 2 stunning courses on-site, excellent practice facilities and an award winning spa and restaurant, this 5-star resort in the south of France is perfect for a leisure or coaching trip for your group.



Kiawah Island Golf Resort • 7 nights self-catering in The Villas at Kiawah Island Golf Resort • 4 rounds of golf including buggies • Practice facilities available for coaching your group • From £825 per person • Pro goes free with 7 amateurs • As a PGA Professional receive 5% commission on the value of this booking

Kiawah Island in South Carolina is one of the most famous and iconic golf resorts in the world. The stunning resort is home to 5 excellent courses including the Ocean course – famous for hosting the 1991 Ryder Cup and 2012 PGA Championship. With excellent practice facilities, a large number of bars and restaurants on-site and 2 accommodation options this is an amazing trip to take a group of your members on. The best time to travel here is between April & October for the warmest temperatures and lowest rainfall.


The Sea Pines Resort • 7 nights self-catering in the Harbour Town Villas • 4 rounds of golf including buggies • Practice facilities available for coaching your group • From £815 per person • Pro goes free with 7 amateurs • As a PGA Professional receive 5% commission on the value of this booking

This luxurious 5-star resort is located on the oceanfront at Hilton Head Island, the southernmost tip of South Carolina. The resort boasts 2 accommodation options The Inn at Harbour Town and Harbour Town Villas are both available depending on the requirements of your group. Atlantic Dunes, Heron Point and home to the RBC Heritage Tournament - Harbour Town Links are all on-site. Fly direct from the UK into Atlanta International airport and the resort is either a short connecting flight or 4-hour drive away.

For more information on how the Golf Pro Travel Team at can help, please call 01753 752 880 or email

The PGA Professional

| March 2018

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Does The PGA Golf Swing Still Exist?



his is the second of two articles looking back at the PGA Training Manual of the 1980/90’s and providing a review of how things have changed in comparison with the present day. In the first article we covered the material referenced in the ‘How to Teach’ element, and this article will reflect on the ‘When’ and ‘What to Teach’ elements. THE TEACHING SEQUENCE The Teaching Sequence is identified as part of ‘When to Teach’ – and suggests the sequence in which things should be addressed.


In order for a pupil to improve it is essential that both pupil and instructor work to the same pattern and a strict


teaching sequence must be established… A quote from the PGA manual (1992)

The philosophy of the Burgundy Manual (BM) was one where the ‘correct’ set-up will likely encourage a ‘correct’ swing, which will deliver a ‘correct’ ball flight (defined as straight in the drawing). There was a strong inference that whilst a good set-up might guarantee a good shot, “a poor (inferred as incorrect) set-up will almost certainly result in a bad one”.


There also remained a strong emphasis on working through ‘Explanation, Demonstration, Application’ in the delivery of the Teaching Sequence. The Teaching Sequence created an order to the delivery of coaching points, and was as follows: 1. Aim 2. Hold 3. Posture 4. Stance 5. Body alignment 6. Ball position 7. Swing It was adapted to support the analysis of ‘Common faults’, through the ‘Fault Finding Sequence’. More of which, later. This Teaching Sequence, and the emphasis on a particular technique being ‘correct’, to hopefully see a ‘correct’ swing that delivers a ‘correct’ ball flight, is where the most significant difference lies between the ethos of the 1980/90’s and today.

Today, learning how to coach is based more around understanding the individual and understanding impact. The skill of controlling the golf ball is emphasised over and above a specific ‘technique’ which may or may not lead to good ball control. This whole philosophy can be traced back to a model – the ‘Laws, Principles & Preferences’ model, first written about by PGA of America Master Professional, Dr. Gary Wiren. It identifies the aspects of impact that influence ball flight, namely the impact factors or ‘Laws’, and then identifies ‘Principle’ elements (e.g. Grip, Dynamic Balance, Lever System, etc.) present in any golf swing, that will have an influence on the delivery of the impact factors. It does not highlight a particular method as being best, only suggesting that the style chosen needs to be ‘workable’ or ‘compatible’ – meaning it can produce impact conditions that meet the demands of the shot the player is trying to execute, on a regular basis. Relating specifically to the teachings of the golf swing, Assistants in training are now also introduced to principles of biomechanics which can help to establish if a golf swing is efficient and effective, rather than a more subjective review of certain key swing positions which may or may not induce greater control of the golf ball. BALL FLIGHT The emphasis on ‘impact’ as the starting point of understanding how to help someone play the game, means that the knowledge of ‘impact’ needs to be sound. Unfortunately, for many years, the BM had incorrect information in it regarding the start direction of the golf ball.


In section 5 – ‘Swing Paths and Ball Flights’ it states:


The Swing Path is responsible for the initial direction of the ball. Clubface position at impact


is responsible for any sidespin which may be imparted.

Based on a centred strike, and direct contact between club and ball, the primary influence on the start direction of any ball will be clubface angle, and the relationship between the clubface and swing path direction will influence the amount of curvature (along with the clubhead speed present). FAULT FINDING SEQUENCE The final element of this review, is to revisit the ‘fault finding sequence’. To help a golfer correct a problem, it states:


Looking for the root cause


of the problem is best done in the order that the pupil positions himself for the shot

There is reference made to the need to establish the ball flight that is present, but The PGA Professional

| March 2018


the sequence that is offered requires a coach to begin with clubface aim, work through the set-up, and finish with observations of the swing. This is significantly different to the way in which an Assistant is now encouraged to address making any technical changes, designed to help a player improve their control over the golf ball. The first consideration for the coach should be to establish what the characteristics of the player’s ball flight are, and in particular: • The initial and ultimate direction of the ball • The curvature associated with the player’s ball flight • The initial launch angle and peak height of the ball (trajectory) • The distance the ball has travelled noting the carry and overall distance This is dictated by how the impact factors are presented by the player, along with the club design and course conditions/lie of the ball that affect every shot. So, the coach is now encouraged to use the following sequence: • Ball flight • Impact • Delivery position to impact – club parallel to ground • Top of the backswing down • Backswing • Set-up The skill of the coach is to know where the player can gain the maximum improvement from the most minimal changes. As a result of this way of thinking, a coach may not need to change elements of the player’s set-up, looking in more detail at the swing itself. Equally, if a change in set-up can be linked to improvement in the player’s ball flight, that would be entirely appropriate.

ADDITIONAL MATERIAL Above and beyond the topics that have been highlighted in the two articles, the BM also covered ‘Playing the Course’, where reference is made to shots from awkward lies, short game shots and putting. Rather than cover that section also, I would like to close by sharing with you a list of some of the areas that are now covered, which weren’t part of a PGA Professional’s training back then. Today, over and above the topics already discussed, the training programme introduces Assistants to (in alphabetical order only): • Coaching styles • Communication skills • Fitness training • Junior & youth development inc. fundamental movement skills • Methods of practice • Nutrition • Player development • Role of various sports scientists • Sports psychology & mental skills • Teaching technologies • Video analysis Clearly there have been significant changes to the programme across the last 25 years, and the scope of this article has not allowed me to address the changes that have also taken place in the area which was formerly ‘Club Repairs’ and is now ‘Club Fitting & Customisation’. This is yet another area where the level of information offered has significantly increased, and which plays a role in helping a PGA Professional coach to the best of his or her ability. If you would be interested in attending a course that went into greater detail about the issues raised in the last two articles, please make contact with me at the PGA National Training Academy via




Maximising your website – how to keep customers engaged


he purpose of a website has changed. Gone are the days when it was just a digital brochure or an online version of the Yellow Pages. As a golf professional, you need to make sure that your website is working hard for you and returning the investment you made when you had it built, writes Antje Doel.

A website has some key functions that are relevant whether you are a big corporate or a one-man-band offering a service. It will help you get found – providing it has been optimised for search. It will build trust by validating the challenges customers face when they visit. Therefore, your website needs to function as your clients – or potential clients – expect it to. It should be educational and informative, helping clients to overcome their problems – whether it’s a video to help them improve their swing or an infographic that explains which club to use for which shot. It must be borne in mind that a website needs to nurture – clients will often visit your site several times before taking the plunge to book a lesson or to make a purchase. By creating decent, valuable content, you will get conversions – either lesson bookings, shop sales, or a subscription to your newsletter. In today’s world, your client’s journey starts by researching online. Potential clients are already making decisions about you and your service before you’re even aware that they’re checking you out. To make sure you can compete from the beginning – namely these early research stages- you need to tackle some of the following tasks. TELL YOUR STORY Telling a story is your website’s main goal. Remember it’s not a story about you. Of course, you’ll feature in it, but the focus must be on your prospective clients. They need to be able to see themselves in the story. This journey usually starts with their hopes, challenges and problems that you will help them solve. Your website needs to instil confidence in a prospective client that they are in the hands of a competent professional, 50

who can get them to a point where they can enjoy a round of golf quickly. GUIDING THE CLIENT JOURNEY Your website must guide your prospective clients through things like the booking process or direct them to other elements within your site that will help them further. A great addition to a website is a chat bot. These are becoming increasingly common and provide instant help for people – whether they need to ask about lessons or what stock you have currently available in the shop. Remember

– not everyone is a digital native and might require some direct contact. Further, when you think of guiding people through your website, the design is a natural element to consider, but remember, SEO, content, and strategy need to be done in parallel with the design. In fact, many believe web design should revolve around SEO rather than the other way around. To help your clients get the most out of their visit, consider implementing the following elements:


1 CALL TO ACTION A call to action is an image or text that prompts visitors, leads, or customers to take a specific action. They help to guide people through the customer journey and advise them on next steps. Your call to action can be to request more information, schedule a lesson, or watch a free how-to video. Make sure it’s relevant and useful. You will find that if it is, people are more likely to sign up for an email newsletter.




You need to have elements that build trust on your homepage. Things like testimonials work well. Make your reviews and testimonials easy to find and place them on the homepage. It is a content category on its own – you can house reviews, case studies, and testimonials there. These need to be refreshed and should be part of your ongoing content building efforts, but once you collect them, use them to build trust and social proof.

5 CORE SERVICES Create boxes that feature your core services and include about 100 words of content with each. Since these are your core services, you’ll likely have full pages or sections of your site related to each, but by placing them on your homepage accompanied by descriptive content, you’ll also get some additional SEO value.

7 SEAMLESS BOOKING One of the best ways to get lessons booked in is to do it online. A client is more likely to turn up for a lesson that’s been booked and paid for in full beforehand. However, conversions will not occur if your booking system and online checkout is inefficient, complex or slow. It is worth investing some time to research which software works best for you before making the financial commitment.

Many small businesses are finally realising the power of video and are featuring one on their homepage. Video allows you to give people a real sense of who you are, what you stand for, how you teach and let people hear your story. It’s also a great way to produce content to engage your audience.

4 CHANGING CONTENT It’s a good idea to feature frequently changing content from your website on your homepage. For example, place a blog or social feed on the homepage that shows recent activity. It’s a great way to show you are active as well as keeping your homepage looking fresh.

6 MOBILE FRIENDLY It sounds minor, but the way your website appears on mobile devices (and other devices, like tablets) is a vital component of your overall online performance. As mobile web usage has grown exponentially over the past few years, search engines have begun to consider it a big factor in their rankings. If your site looks and functions properly on mobile devices, it can be enough to give you a leg up on the competition. If it doesn’t pull up properly – the font is too small, the images don’t display, or it’s hard to navigate – then the opposite will happen. Your search rankings will start to plummet.

8 CHATBOTS It’s likely that you’ll have come across a chatbot on websites of larger companies. However, 2018 will see this technology start to trickle down to small businesses. The tech needs more refinement, as glitches are ironed out. It’s worth keeping an eye on how chatbots are perceived by the public. Weigh up your options for low-cost bot creation, but don’t jump in too soon – remember, if the likes of Mastercard haven’t nailed the chatbot experience yet, you’ll not have it perfect either. But, as corporations started pushing out apps and low-cost app creation services popped up, consumers will begin to expect apps as part of the standard customer service process, so it’s worth reading up so you have a clear idea ahead of time.

Get it done Use this article to take a critical look at your existing website and see where improvements can be made.

The PGA Professional

| March 2018



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Planning Your Social Media Content Calendar


any small business owners think social media calendars are just for the big boys but they’re not. Social media content calendars are a tool that will help you to organise and keep on top of upcoming events, tournaments and new stock lines that are vital in building your personal brand and sparking conversation with clients and club

members. Antje Doel looks at devising your own calendar.

There are two types of content calendar – one’s a social media planner that allows you to collate the bulk of your posts for the next year. The other is an editorial content calendar that helps you plan assets such as videos, blog posts and newsletters. It has been widely established that content and effective communications are at the heart of a successful business. Here are a few reasons why you should devise a calendar of your own:

The PGA Professional

| March 2018


One of the main things a content calendar must contain is key dates that matter to your business—holidays, events relevant to your club – think social and tournaments, product launches in the shop, campaigns to win new clients, major golf tournaments—and so on. This allows you to plan content for those dates and ensure you don’t end up scrambling around at the last minute or worse still, forgetting something entirely. Additionally, a content calendar is a good place to document performance. For example, if you find the majority of your clients are inactive during the winter months then you can effectively recycle old content, rather than wracking your brains for new. You can keep track of when your peak times for traffic and engagement are in your calendar and spread your posts accordingly. Further, it will help you build up a year-on-year picture that will make your business more effective.




Being organized will help you remember those important dates but it will also mean you know what you are posting and on which network at what time. This information and precision will have a very positive impact on your overall marketing plan. Consistency is key. Followers like to know when they can expect new material – a calendar will help you to feed your audience regularly without overdoing things on Facebook to the detriment of say Instagram. Further, the organisation of a content calendar fosters efficiency. Planning ahead, knowing when you are sharing evergreen content and when you need to create and push new content as well as curating content from other creators will save you a lot of time and headaches in the future. It’s worth making the investment now.

3 COLLABORATION A content calendar means you can collaborate more effectively with other parties. Sharing your calendar with the club administrator means they can feed in any important events or dates you might have missed as well as being alerted to things.

4 KNOW WHAT WORKS Careful planning of your social media content will allow you to understand better what sort of content resonates with your audience. In turn, you can produce more of the good stuff and increase your audience organically. Producing a social media content calendar isn’t arduous – you’ll find plenty of free templates on the Internet. A quick Google will throw up several good ones, which you can adapt to your own needs. However, to make the most of your calendar, you need to think about the following things: 1

Know your audience

The best way is to get to know your audience and therefore learn about the sorts of content that will resonate with them. You would be well advised to create personas. Think about everyone you come into contact with: clients, the ladies captain, the men’s captain, social members, beginners, other pros and greenkeepers. Then you need to work out objectively what they want from the content provided. For example: beginners might want some ‘how to’ videos, while the captains might want to know about tournaments at other clubs. Social members will be keen to find out


what’s on and how to buy tickets or get involved in the club more. A calendar can help you whether you’re looking at your existing audience or the audience you want to target. The personas will help you decide what sort of content to create. If you’re not sure about a piece of content, you can refer back to your personas and see whom it best aligns. If the answer is none of them, don’t waste your time creating it. By the same token, you can begin to see which content worked best with your audience – look at engagement. Which posts got the most likes, comments, shares etc.? Create more of the same.



Edit existing content After the exercise in personas and checking engagement levels, go through the content you already have and see what is ‘evergreen’ i.e. content with a long shelf life. Also look at old blog posts, videos and images and see whether they can be re-used too. Make a list of everything that is still useable, can be repurposed or updated and ditch everything else. Dates for the calendar Since you are in the golf industry, you will have a number of dates that are set well ahead of time such as The Masters. These need to be added to your calendar, along with UK dates and clublevel dates (captain’s day, dinner dances etc.). Then think about when you’d like to run promotions for your lessons and add them in too. The shop is also a great source of content – you’ll have seasonal lines in that should be planned for and then holidays like Christmas that will be lucrative. All this is gold for your content calendar. 3

The nitty gritty of your content schedule Once you have got your evergreen content sorted out and the other dates added to your calendar, you can focus on your schedule. Firstly, decide how often you’re going to publish on each social network. Next, think about the mix of content – the type and amount of content for each category – original you’ve created and third party you’d like to share. It is best to use the rule of thirds when sharing content. Onethird original you’ve created, one-third curated third party content and a third engagement – likes, commenting on other people’s 4

posts and responding to comments on your own posts. Additionally, think about how you will come up with new content ideas and how you plan to implement them. If you want to make a video, what will you need to do to make that happen. Be realistic. Then start to trawl relevant sites for third party content you can share, don’t forget the sports pages and blogs of fellow professionals and others connected with golf. The PGA website is a good resource too. These need to be scheduled into the calendar. Scheduling your content Obviously, time is a key factor in all of this. You don’t want to have to spend hours each day posting on your various social media channels. This is where tools such as Hootsuite, Tweetdeck and Buffer come in. You can use your content calendar and spend an hour or two at the beginning of each week scheduling all your posts across all your channels. They allow you to select the day, date and time and which channel you want your post to go out on. Remember to add appropriate hashtags, images and links. Constant review is the absolute key to a successful social media strategy and content calendar. Keep an eye on your evergreen content to make sure it remains relevant. If it’s past its sell-by date, ditch it and use your personas to create something else. The investment in terms of time will reap you rewards as you see your reputation and personal brand established and maintained and your followers grow. Your business as a golf professional really can’t survive with an organized and focused approach to social media. 5

Get it done this month 1. Review all your content – decide what is worth keeping and what can be ditched 2. Know your audience – make a list of the different personas in play and see which evergreen content aligns best with each group. Get rid of anything that doesn’t fit 3. Investigate and download a social media calendar template and start filling it in 4. Investigate scheduling tools – choose one and start to get to know how it works

The PGA Professional

| March 2018




New Member Retention A

key challenge facing golf clubs is the retention of existing members. Whilst some leavers are inevitable due to life changes, e.g. moving house, many clubs lose members because they are dissatisfied with their overall golfing experience.

In any business, employers will tell you it is more cost effective to retain an existing customer / employee than to recruit a new one. So why do golf clubs continue to put the majority of their resources towards memberships drives? As a PGA Professional, you are uniquely placed to be the most effective retention tool your club has. You can identify golfing habits, know those seeking to improve, develop relationships with new members and have regular contact with all golfers in the pro shop. Retention starts the minute someone joins a golf club. With many golf clubs heading into renewal time there is a recruitment push. How can you be the heart of retention for new members?

1 GATHER INFORMATION The MOT - Whether it’s a beginner who is just learning the game or an accomplished golfer with years of experience, everyone can benefit from a bit of advice from their PGA Professional. The best players in the world spend hour after hour working on their game with their coaches and the slightest adjustment can make a huge difference. A 15-minute session for a new member has multiple benefits:


You get to know the new member in a 1-2-1 environment. Use this time wisely to help build up profiles on your members. The 3-point checklist below is all you need. The more you know, the more you can develop relationships, enhance their golfing experience and build your business.


A swing review with a couple of tips gives them something for free and any pointers you give provide an easy start to the conversation the next time you see them. E.g. How are you getting on with the change of grip?


The new member has the chance to ask you few things without it costing them any money. Always nice to get something for free.


There is the opportunity for this to progress to an easy conversation regarding lessons. Helping someone become a better golfer will naturally develop a good feeling towards you and the club


It is an unexpected benefit which will make the new member feel valued

It’s a three-stage process:


Gather Information


Segment your data


Targeted marketing

This time with each new member can make the difference and provide more reassurance to them that they have made the right choice of golf club.

Your checklist

✓ Create a template email which is automatically sent to each new member one week after they join

✓ Create a form to use with each new member

✓ Build a database with the information you gather to enable segmentation


New Members - the MOT 3-point checklist What are their golfing aims? What do they struggle with the most? Do they know many members?



2 SEGMENT YOUR DATA Now you know more about each new member, apply this knowledge to segment your database and help each new member maximise their membership. At this stage you can segment into two simple categories: • Those seeking improvement • Those seeking a game These categories are areas where a PGA Professional can have the most impact. Consider the following ideas as methods of reaching these audiences.


Your checklist

Game Improvement- The Pro Clinic Which of your new members wanted to improve their game? They may make use of the various practice facilities available and whilst that will help with their game it doesn’t beat advice from a professional. Run a series of simple clinics designed to help players with their game. These need be no more than 30-45 minutes long with each one focusing on a specific area of the game e.g. pitching, chipping, long irons. You don’t have to limit this to new members. Offer it to them ahead of the communication to the whole club but aim for mixed groups of no more than 20. By limiting numbers, it becomes a talking point and something people strive to attend. You are generating demand in your service. This also helps new members further integrate into the club, with the PGA pro facilitating the activity and providing added value to their membership. Find a Game What if they don’t know many members? Golfers join golf clubs to play golf. Sounds obvious but not all new members are drawn in by people they know. They could be new to the area, new into golf or changing from another local club. Whatever the reason, the PGA pro

✓ Identify new members seeking game improvement

✓ Email an invitation to register. Advise them ahead of it going to other club members

✓ Expand invitation to the club, limiting the numbers

✓ Run the clinic ✓ Follow up emails with lesson offers ✓ Look to run five across the key golfing months.

can help. Many clubs run this with a sheet in the competition room but with some focus and drive it can be more successful. Find a game is an activity which can run for all members and it helps new members get out on the course, meet existing members and start making the most of the golf membership.

If you have a members’ area on the website

For those without a members’ area on the website

Utilise a resource which members can check on their phone or at home without having to be at the club.

This is simple to implement as it will just be a case of setting up the original mailing list and then being consistent with the emails. This can all be reasonably automated and scheduled in activity.

Promote to encourage use.

This process should be easy for people to get used to with the aim that they will come off the list as they develop a regular game because of this initiative.

Your checklist

✓ Direct new members to this page during the MOT session and with an email

✓ If not already in place, set up a page in the members’ area where players can register their details and availability

✓ Promote - Email all members, include in newsletters, have posters in the shop and around the clubhouse.

Your checklist

✓ Identify your new members seeking a game and add them to your find a game email list.

✓ If not already live, launch the activity across the whole club to identify the members who are interested and set up an email list.

✓ Ensure you have templated emails –one asking for availability, one showing availability options.

✓ Automated Email every two weeks to get availability. ✓ Collate information and send availability options email. The PGA Professional

| March 2018





PGA Benefits


his month’s PGA Professional looks at the launch of a brand new and exciting benefits programme, PGA BENEFITS, which could save you hundreds of pounds a year.

GET SET FOR SAVINGS! Good news! Thanks to your membership with The PGA you now have access to PGA Benefits. It’s a website where you can secure exclusive savings on health and fitness, holidays, motoring, wining and dining, spa treatments, entertainment, technology and more. Think of it as your portal to a portfolio containing exclusive money-saving discounts. HOW DOES IT WORK? You barely need to lift a finger. You are already eligible thanks to your Membership with The PGA. There are no extra charges. There are no extra charges or annoying registration process. Just sign into the Members’ area at and begin saving. The platform is designed to improve each Member’s experience of utilising the benefits on offer, ensuring the new scheme adds even more value to you. The search functionality allows you to locate high street brands quickly, Members can find benefits that are specifically relevant to their interests, and the homepage highlights the best discounts for key brands. SOME OF THE BEST SAVINGS YOU WILL FIND: Life is busy and some days you don’t have time to spend hours combing through lots of websites for the best deals. That’s why PGA Benefits brings you the biggest and most exclusive deals out there. Look out for these two stamps: Any time you see this stamp, you should be getting the best price/deal in the UK for this product or service > This stamp means that you should be getting the best price/deal this company offers >

ALL MEMBER BENEFITS IN ONE PLACE: The new PGA Benefits platform combines all of your Member benefits and incentives in one tidy place. As well as all of these new savings and offers, you’ll find all of your previous services on the website such as information on ticketing, offers from suppliers and existing travel deals. WANT TO FIND MORE WAYS TO SAVE? TRY THE SAVINGS CALCULATOR: Life is full of overheads - and everyday expenses can add up fast. As a Member it’s easy to make your money go much, much further. You can save cash on everything from car insurance and groceries to gym membership and meals out. Try the savings calculator to see how much you could save on the things that matter to you. 58




BIG BENEFITS: CASHBACK ON EVERYDAY PURCHASES Start using My Cashback Card and you can earn cashback of between 3 to 12.5 per cent when shopping at major retailers such as Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Debenhams, B&Q and Argos. Based on an average family’s spend on everyday items, you could make savings of more than £600 a year. CINEMAS – SAVE UP TO 40% Would you like to catch the latest blockbusters on the big screen and save money on tickets? PGA Members can save up to 40 per cent on cinema tickets at major cinema chains like Cineworld, Showcase and Empire as well as many independent cinemas including Hollywood Cinemas, Merlin and Reel. SAVE MONEY ON GYM MEMBERSHIPS Joining a gym can prove to be a costly hobby but you can now save money on gym memberships with My Gym Discounts. It is a voucher-based or discount code scheme which offers you the opportunity to benefit from discounted gym memberships at hundreds of gyms, leisure centres, health clubs and class studios across Great Britain and Ireland. SAVE 10% WITH SUPER BREAK MINI-HOLIDAYS PGA Members have access to a 10 per cent discount on hotel accommodation with optional rail travel including Eurostar, flights, concerts & events, theatre & dining, group bookings and much more. VEHICLE BREAKDOWN COVER Nobody wants the stress of a vehicle breakdown. So why not take advantage of this breakdown cover benefit from and make sure you have one less thing to worry about on your next road trip. GREAT SAVINGS ON A WIDE RANGE OF APPLE PRODUCTS PGA Members can make great savings on a wide range of Apple products including iPad, iPhone, iPod, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, iMac, Apple Watch, Magic accessories and more. You can now order online and arrange to collect most items from your chosen Apple Retail Store - usually within an hour.

To access all of these benefits and many more, simply sign into your Members’ area on and click on my benefits. *Terms and conditions apply to all benefits. See website for details. Insurance is subject to underwriting and eligibility criteria. PGA Benefits is managed and run on behalf of The PGA by Parliament Hill Ltd.

The PGA Professional

| March 2018





PGA Benefits PGA Membership entitles you to take advantage of a host of benefits and incentives. Mars

Village Gym

Provide retail expertise to help maximise your return. Benefit from point of sale promotions and receive guidance on how to choose an appropriate product range. For further info, contact

Exclusive discounted health club membership at 28 Village venues. £35 per month with no joining fee (potential saving of up to £224/year). To receive this offer, visit the gym reception at the club you wish to join, and show your PGA Member card. Visit



Account holders personal use trolley at a discounted rate of 15 per cent off trade price (non-account holders are eligible for trade price). Call 01795 473 555 or email quoting your membership number.

Enhanced, discounted dental healthcare through the PGA corporate plan. Call 0800 838 951 quoting PGA.

SkyCaddie Heavily-discounted personal use prices start at £60+ VAT for a SkyCaddie GPS or £70+ VAT for the SkyPro. Get yourself a SkyTrak Launch Monitor and receive a free metal case and first year software saving £239. Become a SkyTrak Show Case Dealer and earn a bonus 40% affiliate fee (about £600+ VAT) on your first sale and 20% fee on any future sales. Email, or call 01844 296 358.

Huxley Golf Incentive programme of up to £500 in commission when recommending customers to purchase an allweather home putting green. Call 01962 733 222 or visit

Crossover Technologies Golf-specific EPOS system. The technology manages stock levels, reducing dead stock and therefore helping to increase profit margins. Contact: 01454 418 395.

Coca-Cola Special packages on products and coolers Visit the members’ product portal at:


BMW Exclusive contract hire rates on a selection of BMW and MINI models through BMW Group. Visit Call the BMW PGA Sales Centre on 0207 514 3599 or email:

Peugeot Preferential rates available on a selection of cars over 24 months. Visit www.peugeot-contract Contact your local Peugeot dealership, or call the Peugeot Business Quoteline on 0345 313 3811.

ARAG Free legal advice if you live in UK and RoI. Covers employment, commerical, consumer, property, personal injury, family etc. 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Call 0330 303 1846 quoting PGA.

Public liability insurance Cover included in your subscription fee (if you are resident and working in the EU). Contact or call 01675 470 333 for your individual certificate. For claims, contact Howden on 0121 698 8050. Visit the dedicated PGA insurance site at:

Techniblock sun protection

VAT advice

Benefit from retail exclusivity, low MOQ, small but branded counter-top display unit. Free next day delivery and extended expiry date. Order through Tracey Parry on 07769 943 200 or email

PAYE/National Insurance advice

For support with golf-related VAT issues, contact or call 01675 470 333.

Free helpline. Contact or call 0131 347 0355 quoting PGA.




First Data Merchant Solutions

Antalya Golf Club & Sirene Hotel

Preferential rates to PGA members for accepting credit and debit cards. Call 0800 652 5808 (new customers) or 0345 606 5055 (existing customers), quoting T25.

Attractive all-inclusive rates for you and your family. Call +90 242 710 0800 or email: quoting PGA.

Recruitment Services

Formby Hall Golf Resort & Spa

Business Relationship Officers (BRO’s) are here to help forge stronger links within the industry and support you in your role. For more information, contact or call 01675 470 333.

Recruitment Advertising As a commitment to creating employment and career opportunities, you can place a free recruitment advert (under 50 words) online and in print. Call 01675 470 333.

Virgin Atlantic Access to bespoke golfing packages for you and your clients through the dedicated Golf Pro Travel Team. Benefit from the best rates in the market. Receive a five per cent commission on your booking. Contact the Golf Pro Travel Team on 01753 752 880 or Visit

Aphrodite Hills - Holiday Residences 25 per cent discount on public rates with minimum stay of five nights (seven nights minimum stay during July and August). Valid for all apartments, junior villas and superior villa holiday bookings for 2018. Quote PGA Professional when contacting:

Aphrodite Hills - Hotel 20 per cent discount from package rates. Quote PGA Professional when contacting Visit

Pestana Vila Sol, Vilamoura, Algarve Luxury five-star resort, host venue for the Lombard Trophy grand final 15 per cent discount to PGA Members and amateur participants in each regional final. Book direct through using promo code: 20516W0LX. The PGA Professional

Newly refurbished, luxurious four-star accommodation from just £78 per room B&B (max. two occupants) and includes use of the upgraded pool and health club. PGA Member deals available Sunday to Thursday for business or leisure. Contact Mark Williams on 01704 875 699 or quoting your member number.

| March 2018

Virgin Atlantic are delighted to offer all PGA Members discounted airfares across the whole of their network. Destinations include Orlando, Barbados, Dubai, New York, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Johannesburg and Las Vegas with many more to choose from. Checked golf bag clearance (subject to availability). Discounted flights are available in all three cabins, Upper Class, Premium and Economy. For assistance with your flight or holiday enquiries, contact the dedicated Virgin Atlantic sports team at: or on: 0344 209 7745, quoting PGA and your membership number.

The Open Complimentary access to the Open Championship. Access to the private, on-site PGA Member Marquee for yourself and a guest.

European Tour tickets Complimentary access is also granted at a number of European Tour promoted events, including the BMW PGA Championship, British Masters, Irish Open, and Scottish Open. Further details, including the full list of promoted events can be found within the Members’ Benefits area on



The Houghton-le-Spring Golf Club requires a full-time PGA Professional. Houghton-le-Spring Golf Club is a private members’ club located in Tyne & Wear between Sunderland and Durham, easily accessible from the A1 and A19, and is well known for being a friendly welcoming club. The club was founded in 1908 and currently has 600 playing members in various categories. The course is an 18-hole parkland course with a six-hole academy course and practice facilities. We would like to hear from forward-thinking, qualified individuals who would be interested to hear our plans and aims for the future and what the club could offer to someone taking on a role within this friendly club. We are looking for a PGA qualified, enthusiastic and innovative person, who has excellent interpersonal skills and is responsive to members’ requirements. The ideal person will have drive and initiative and the commitment to deliver service to both members and visitors. The position provides the successful applicant with the opportunity to develop their own business as well as assist the club in its continued development. Shop premises and teaching facilities are provided with a retainer on offer. Interested parties should apply via the email address or in writing to: Mr David Freeman, Honorary Secretary, Houghton-le-Spring Golf Club, Copt Hill, Houghton-le-Spring DH5 8LU by 30th March 2018.





Head Professional Head Professional Head Cricket St Thomas GolfProfessional Club is seeking an ambitious Cricket St Thomas Golf Club is seeking an ambitious and motivated Head Professional with a track record of Cricket St Thomas Golf Club is seeking an ambitious and motivated Head Professional with a track record of delivering excellent customer service and successful and motivated Head Professional with aand track record of delivering excellent customer service successful Golf Development initiatives. delivering excellent customer service and successful Golf Development initiatives. Golf Development initiatives. This is an exciting opportunity for a fully qualified PGA This is an exciting opportunity for a fully qualified PGA Professional to join our Senior Management team. This is an exciting opportunity forManagement a fully qualified PGA Professional to join our Senior team. Spearheading the newly refurbished Pro Shop, the ideal Professionalthe to join ourrefurbished Senior Management team. Spearheading newly Pro Shop, the ideal candidate will develop the retailing offer, provide general Spearheading the newly Pro Shop, the ideal candidate will develop therefurbished retailing offer, provide general golfing advice, assist with competitions and provide an candidate will develop the retailing offer, and provide general golfing advice, assist with competitions provide an outstanding customer experience. golfing advice, assist with competitions and provide an outstanding customer experience. outstanding customer experience. There will be huge opportunities for coaching and key to There will be huge opportunities for coaching and key to the role is the development of all golf programmes, from There will opportunities and key to the role is be thehuge development of all for golfcoaching programmes, from beginners and juniors to existing members. the rolebeginners is the development golf programmes, and juniorsof toall existing members. from beginners and juniors to existing members. You will be expected to build, lead, train, mentor and You will be expected to build, lead, train, mentor and motivate an effective team of Assistant PGA Professionals. You willan beeffective expected to build, lead, train, and motivate team of Assistant PGA mentor Professionals. Experience, confidence and an enthusiastic and proactive motivate an effective team Assistant PGA and Professionals. Experience, confidence andofan enthusiastic proactive approach, together with a strong customer focus is essential. Experience, confidence an enthusiastic andisproactive approach, together with aand strong customer focus essential. approach, together with a strong customer focus is essential. Please email CV and cover letter to: Please email CV and cover letter to: March 26th. Please email CV and cover before letter to: before March 26th. before March 26th.




The position is for someone interested in the retail clothing sector of the golf industry. You will be supporting the agent for UnderArmour and Daily Sports apparel brands. After a training period working alongside the agent you will be tasked with in-store merchandising, stock control and product training to the retailer and his staff. You will be in control of your own diary and will need to be able to work flexibly in order to complete the work. The position offered is employed or self-employed. It is offered initially as a three-day-a-week position which could grow into a full-time role for the right person. This is a very varied and flexible role for someone looking to start a career in the golf industry. You will need to hold a full driving license and be a car owner. The area you will be working in is Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Oxon, North London, Hertfordshire and Essex. A good eye for colour, attention to detail, diligent, reliable, honest, and an easy going manner are what I am looking for in this person. Please reply with your CV and a brief outline about yourself and why you would like this opportunity to Phil Nightingale at: Closing date for applications: March 30, 2018



Head Professional at Woodford Golf Club

We have an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic, forwardthinking PGA qualified Professional. Situated in the heart of Epping Forest, north east London, Woodford is a picturesque, historic (est. 1890) members’ club, providing an accessible but testing nine-hole course. Measured at 5,852 yards par 70 played over 18 holes the course is recognised for its quality. The club is a small but ambitious with a growing membership and green fee base and large catchment. We are looking for a self-motivated suitably qualified Head Professional who would relish the opportunity to work with us to achieve our ambitions for Woodford. The successful candidate will need to demonstrate a strong customer centred approach combined with business management skills. Duties will include: organising and running the pro shop; teaching at all levels from beginners to low handicap golfers; promoting and marketing the club; and supporting the membership. If interested please send a cover letter and CV telling us why you think you are the right person for this job. Applications to: Paul Evans, Acting Secretary, Woodford Golf Club, 2 Sunset Avenue, Woodford Green, Essex IG8 0ST or email: The closing date for applications is March 31, 2018.


Head Professional Royal Eastbourne Golf Club, East Sussex The Royal Eastbourne Golf Club requires a FULL TIME HEAD PROFESSIONAL Royal Eastbourne Golf Club is a private members’ club with a long and proud history. The club was founded in 1887 and currently has 800 playing members. The 18 hole Devonshire course and 9 hole Hartington course are set in the lee of the South Downs with splendid views over Eastbourne Town and nearby coastline. Applications are invited from experienced, qualified PGA Members with a proven track record who are enthusiastic, self-motivated, possess good interpersonal skills and are responsive to members’ requirements. Moreover, they should have the foresight to recognise the opportunity presented to develop their own business and to assist the club in its continued development. In addition to the clubs development academy based on the Hartington course, the club also benefits from two putting greens, a short game pitching area with practice bunker and a long game practice area. Please apply in writing with a covering letter and CV to: The Club Chairman, The Royal Eastbourne Golf Club, Paradise Drive, Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN20 8BP The closing date for applications is Saturday 31st March 2018.


Do you want to further your golf career at one of the leading golf venues in the world and most exciting facilities in Europe?

The iconic Gleneagles Hotel, Host Venue for The 2014 Ryder Cup, 2018 European Golf Team

Championships and 2019 Solheim Cup, is looking for an ambitious and enthusiastic candidate

to join its successful team. Superb opportunities with The PGA National Academy for further developing your career as a PGA golf professional.

Please apply with C.V. to: Stephen Hamilton, Resourcing Manager

The Gleneagles Hotel and Resort, Auchterarder, Perthshire, PH3 1 NF.



The PGA Professional

Tel: 01764 694241 E-mail:

Closing date for applications: March 30th 2018 -, ,-. -


| March 2018




Arbroath Golf Links Ltd Retained Golf Professional Beadlow Manor Hotel & Golf Club is a 36-hole golf course set in 307 acres of Bedfordshire countryside. We have two challenging courses, a floodlit driving range along with a thriving membership base. We are seeking a highly-motivated PGA Professional with a desire to bring their knowledge and experience of the golf industry. An opportunity exists to take a lease of the golf shop and teaching rights on the driving range, running it as their own business within the club. Suitable applicants must be • Highly self-motivated with a passion to succeed • Five years minimum PGA Qualified with experience in managing staff • Financially secure to purchase stock • Willing to relocate if required Responsibilities include • Establish a well-stocked shop and staffing levels • Ensuring all staff deliver excellent service • Delivering a successful teaching academy • Organising all hire equipment • Ensuring competition responsibilities are carried on competition days • Delivery of standards in and around the driving range on a daily basis To be considered for this exciting and rare opportunity please forward a CV with covering letter to: The General Manager, Beadlow Manor Hotel & Golf Club, Ampthill, Beadlow, Bedfordshire SG17 5PH or email: Closing date for applications: March 31st, 2018.

AGLL operates, year-round, the James Braiddesigned course and a driving range in Arbroath, Scotland. Our longstanding Professional is retiring, and we would like to contract a fully qualified PGA Professional with the ambition to help our course thrive. The successful applicant will have the ability to: • Provide an energetic dedicated service • Promote the course to new members and visitors to increase income • Deliver an excellent independent golf business including retail, fitting and coaching • Provide a coaching offering that develops and retains users • Improve the diversity of participation in golf in the local area • Develop a strong bond with the club and green-keeping staff to ensure that teamwork enhances the enjoyment of all patrons of the course • Enhance the use of technology to communicate with members and visitors The retainer is negotiable, and the successful candidate will be supported in their efforts to develop a successful business. To apply, please submit by email a cover letter and CV demonstrating your ability and experience, focusing on delivering the requirements. Applications should be emailed to Scott Arbuthnott at: The closing date for applications is Friday, March 30, 2018.

Courtown Golf Club invites tenders for the provision of professional golf services. This is an exciting opportunity for a PGA Professional to deliver a progressive service to a golf club which has been in existence for over 80 years and has a membership of over 1,000. Based in the sunny south east, Courtown is a haven for visitors and Courtown Golf Club enjoys an excellent reputation as a challenging golf course with excellent facilities. Courtown Golf Club invites tenders from PGA Professionals who want to make a positive contribution to the club and provide a welcoming experience for members and visitors alike, and, can demonstrate the capacity to deliver on the following key areas: • Develop and manage a team to deliver all the services as specified within the tender documents, with a clear commitment to continually enhance the customer experience. • Play a key role in the marketing and promotion of the club by enhancing the “golf experience” to attract and retain members and build new high-profile events. • Operate an independent golf retail business, providing a first-class service to club members and visitors. • Embracing current technology, provide the highest standard of golf tuition. • Provide first-class custom fitting and repair services. • Support the administration of golf for both members and visitors including organising and managing competitions. • Collaborate with the course superintendent and green keeping team in relation to course maintenance and communication. • Use the club’s IT systems, and social media proficiently for the benefit of the club and all its customers. • Understand and comply with all legislative requirements associated with the role. The role reports directly to the club’s manager, who in turn reports to the Executive Committee. Courtown Golf Club will offer the use of a shop maintained by the club and access to the club’s practise facilities for teaching purposes. Interested applicants should apply for a tender pack either in writing to: Golf Club Manager, Courtown Golf Club, Kiltennel, Gorey, Co.Wexford Y25N578 or by email to: Closing date for all tenders – 24th March 2018.




We are looking forward to a busy 2018 and we want you to join our successful and growing team! There are immediate job vacancies in the following branches for both Qualified PGA Professionals and Trainee PGA Professionals:

Carrickmines (Assistant Manager) The Park, Carrickmines, Dublin H A L P E N N Y G O L F

Swords (Custom Fitter & Assistant Manager)


Airside Retail Park, Swords, Co.Dublin



Lucan (Custom Fitter & Assistant Manager) Lucan Retail Park, Lucan, Co.Dublin

Cork (Custom Fitter & Assistant Manager) Kinsale Retail Park, Cork Applicants must have previous experience of working in, or managing a retail environment. Applicants must be self-motivated, sales and customer service focused with excellent interpersonal skills. Effective communication, leadership and organisational skills are essential for the Management positions. For full application details, please send your CV to:

02137 - Halpenny Golf PGA Application.indd 1

Hilden Park Golf & Leisure Club, Kent Qualified PGA Teaching Professional required for golf and leisure club, on the outskirts of Tonbridge and Sevenoaks, Kent. Negotiable hours serving in the shop will be available whilst growing client base. This busy golf centre is equipped with a 28-bay floodlit driving range, nine-hole course and gym and is not a private members’ club and therefore attracts golfers from all surrounding areas. Key skills will include self-motivation and excellent customer service. Applications to Danny French via email to: Applications closing date: 28th March 2018


23/02/2018 21:23

Canterbury Golf Club & Driving Range, Kent

Looking to recruit PGA assistant or training applicant for fulltime role at busy members’ club with floodlit driving range. Role includes retail, repairs, custom fitting and coaching. Candidates should be highly motivated, enthusiastic and possess good retail and communication skills. Apply with CV to danielmaude22@ before March 23. Sonning Golf Club, Berkshire

Require training applicant / registered assistant. Successful candidate must be highly motivated, reliable, enthusiastic with strong focus on customer service. Excellent teaching facilities including range and short game area. Fantastic opportunity to progress your coaching and golf. CV and letter to: jonathan.dunn@ by March 18. Killarney Golf & Fishing Club, Co. Kerry

Seeking a PGA teaching professional at 27-hole complex with new swing simulator installed in April. Must be highly motivated and be able to provide high customer service. To apply, enclose cover letter with your CV to Chris Knowles at: gm@sapeygolfandcountryclub. before March 26.

Qualified assistant required at very busy, 45-hole members’ club with fantastic practice facilities. Duties will include all aspects of golf facility daily operation. Excellent interpersonal skills are essential and delivery of exceptional customer service a priority. Send application letter and CV to: Closing date: March 26.

Tim Jenkins Golf, County Durham

Dundonald Links Golf Course, Ayrshire

Sapey Golf & Country Club, Worcestershire

PGA qualified assistant to join our team at our Cleveland store. Duties to include coaching, custom fitting and retail. We are looking for an enthusiastic person with good product knowledge. Own transport essential. Applications with CV to: info@ by March 26. The PGA Professional

| March 2018

Exciting opportunities for PGA Assistants / Professionals to join the golf operations team. We are looking for highly motivated, enthusiastic, and hard-working individuals who take pride in their work. For further details and to apply, visit www. 65



Cotswolds Club, Oxfordshire

Longcliffe Golf Club, Leicestershire

Training applicant or registered assistant required at busy hotel and club. 35-40 hours shop work guaranteed with opportunity for junior and adult coaching. Must be enthusiastic, passion for junior coaching, flexible and work well within team. To apply, send cover letter to Danny Phillips at: before March 19.

Full-time retail assistant required at bust, private members’ club. Must possess good IT skills and excellent levels of customer service. Successful candidate also has responsibility assisting the sales of society and corporate green fees. Apply with CV to: golfgear@ before March 17.

Bishopbriggs Golf Range, Glasgow

Requires PGA assistant to work alongside the golf department on all aspects of the day-to-day business. Role includes operating the shop, assisting the caddie master and an aspect of lessons. To apply, email: Closing date: March 19.

Forward-thinking self-employed PGA teaching professional required. Opportunity to build your own coaching business at busy range. Some guaranteed income on offer, which can be used as a platform to build from. Great incentives and good earning potential. Apply with CV to: before March 16. Denham Golf Club, Buckinghamshire

Fantastic opportunity for training applicant or registered assistant at private members’ club. This includes working with GC2 in our swing studio and shop retail. Applicants must be self-motivated and have an outgoing personality. Duties include minimum 30 hours alongside private coaching. Apply to: mark.lawrie@denhamgolfclub. before March 22. Portmarnock Golf Club, Co. Dublin

Exciting career opportunity for training applicant / registered assistant to join our team of PGA Professionals. Candidate must be hardworking, self-motivated and dedicated to providing excellent customer service. Experience preferred but not essential. Send CV and cover letter to Head Professional, Francis Howley at: francis@ before March 15. american golf

We are seeking enthusiastic, ambitious and driven individuals who are passionate about retail and love golf! We are recruiting an assistant manager for our Swansea and Bristol stores. If you’re interested in this position and joining Europe’s largest golf retailer visit for further information. Applications by March 22. Elsenham Golf & Leisure, Essex

Registered assistant or qualified teaching professional required for busy golf centre. Looking for enthusiastic professional who is keen to build a strong client base, especially with juniors. Email CV with cover letter to Paul Ring, Head Professional at: lessons@ before March 27. The Wychwood Golf Club, Oxfordshire

Fantastic opportunity to join innovative professional team at vibrant Cotswolds club. Contracted shop hours with scope for coaching and custom fitting using our public driving range and new swing studio. Must be ambitious and proactive with excellent customer service. Apply with cover letter and CV to: before March 27. Malahide Golf Club, Dublin

Assistant required for busy 27-hople members’ course, all categories considered. Must be self-motivated team player, flexible with retail knowledge and own transport. Good package available for the right candidate. Email CV to: before March 27. 66

Mount Juliet Estate, Co. Kilkenny

Gloucester Golf Club, Gloucestershire

Recruiting for a Head PGA Professional. Role includes leasing of the professional shop, full teaching rights on our refurbished two-tier, 15-bay range, including two bespoke teaching bays. For further information, email Keith Wood at: info@gloucestergolf. com Closing date for applications: March 18. West Hove Golf Club, East Sussex

Busy members’ club with driving range facilities seeks fully qualified PGA Professional or third year assistant. Should be keen to work as part of team to develop already existing academy further. Position includes one day p/w shop work. Apply with CV to Ryan Fenwick at: by March 16. Hilden Park Golf & Leisure Club, Kent

We are looking for trainee assistant professional, starting April. Passion to make sales, and great customer service are essential. Free use of gym / golf / range is part of the package. Salary dependent on experience. Applications to Danny French at: danny@hildenpark. by March 28. Bowood Hotel, Spa & Golf Resort, Wiltshire

An exciting opportunity to join the golf operations team as PGA assistant in training. Successful candidate must be hardworking and enthusiastic with a strong focus on excellent customer service. Send CV and letter to Director of Golf, Ben Emerson at: b.emerson@ before March 31.

OVERSEAS 18UNDER Golf Academy, China

PGA teaching professionals required for facility in Shenzen. Applicants must be PGA qualified and hold bachelor’s degree. Looking for highly motivated and enthusiastic individuals to join our PGA teaching team. For more information submit your CV to James O’Brien at: before March 26. Birdie International Golf Academy, China

Fitness trainer required at one of the best academies in China for junior beginner, competitive junior, adult players. Both familiarity with personal and group training sessions. Minimum 12 months’ working experience. Benefit include air ticket, accommodation and food. Contact Catherine Ren at: before March 31.

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PGA Member's Magazine March 2018  
PGA Member's Magazine March 2018