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Ladies on the Links: Advice on Getting Started | By Robert Wilson

Golf is a great game played by men, women, and juniors all over the world. It is true that golf began largely as a men’s game. But today, women and juniors make up a large amount of the total number of rounds played in the United States and abroad.

With the help of the Professional Golfers Association of America (PGA) and our 28,000 members, we PGA pros are always looking at ways to increase the total number of rounds played. Recent PGA studies show that women and juniors have enormous potential in boosting participation in the sport of golf.

In my column here, I would particularly like to focus on the women.

First, most beginners – often particularly women – think golf is an overly expensive game to learn to play. If someone went out and immediately bought clubs (woods and irons), golf bag, shoes and a couple dozen golf balls to get started, that would be the case. However most Fayetteville area courses and driving ranges have rental clubs you can use, and there’s nothing wrong with starting to play with a good pair of tennis shoes.

Several courses sponsor clinics for women from time to time, and attending one of them is also an excellent way to get started. By beginning this way, you can determine whether you really like the game before starting to purchase your golf equipment. Also, many courses have Ladies Leagues and special Ladies Day events that are open to beginners.

Before I make my final recommendation, let me say again that I am a PGA of America member. As a PGA professional and golf course manager, I would highly recommend that any woman interested in getting golf lessons see a local or regional PGA professional. I feel sure this would make the process of getting started a little easier and more relaxing.

Things you would expect to learn like swing, posture, practice tips and equipment would certainly be part of any instruction. But we PGA professionals also believe that understanding golf terminology and learning the rules of the game are of the utmost importance for any starting female golfer.

During the recent PGA Championship, a participation promotion called “Play Golf America” was featured on television through the weekend. The effort, of course, was designed to get more newcomers into the game. I believe it’s time for a larger number of those newcomers to be women!

Robert Wilson is a PGA Professional at Cypress Lakes Golf Course.