"So what’s to be done? Well, there are many forms of competitive golf that eliminate the severe penalties of stroke-play. For example, Stableford, which uses a scoring system: one point for a net bogey, two points for a net par, three points for a net birdie, and four points for a net eagle. Shots are assigned per hole based on handicap and hole rating. If you’re having a bad hole with no chance of bogey, you can pick up and move on to the next hole. You’ve just lost one hole, and haven’t ruined the whole round. " -- Robert Ratcliffe, Assistant Coach, Team Canada Men's Squad
GOLF IN SCHOOLS
"One thing we’ve been pushing lately between ourselves and Golf Canada is the Golf in Schools program. I’ve been volunteering for the last five years and most of my winters are spent teaching kids in elementary schools all over our area. I think if you can get into the schools and get them involved, then you can get them out to the golf course. The biggest thing is to keep it interesting, different and fun. In order to get our kids to come back and play we do tons of fundraising and prizing. Every Wednesday we have a day – it’s called a junior jitney and it’s a four person scramble – and we get 40 - 50 kids out and give out a few hundred dollars worth of prizes." -- Jonathan Garron, Head Professional, Abercrombie Country Club
LET KIDS BE KIDS
"I think creating a fun and safe environment that kids can express themselves through the sport will keep them in the game. I know making it fun is a cliché but it really does boil down to that. Having too many rules and etiquette sometimes takes the fun out of golf. There should be a structured environment but with room for expression. So when they hit a good shot they can celebrate the way they feel –traditionally that would have been frowned upon." -- Ann Carroll, Assistant Coach, Team Canada Women’s Squad
SPEAK TO THEM IN THEIR #LANGUAGE
"One of the biggest issues in retaining kids in the game is ensuring they have fun. A friend of mine, LPGA Professional Sara Dickson has been hash tagging #golﬁsfun on Twitter for sometime now in the hopes of growing the game amongst our youth. It’s also important to be proactive on the various social media outlets and to keep golf in their minds; this seems to be where they’re spending a large portion of their time. Recently, I organized a team of professionals from across North America to broadcast a version of our 7 Nights At The Twitter Academy to do just that, and we uploaded our Junior Edition."
"Kids also look up to the youth on tour and want to be like them, like Rickie Fowler, the better they play the bigger role model they will play to our youth and this will help in keeping kids striving to be like their role models." -- Jason Helman, director of instruction, Wyndance Golf Club