COVENTRY teenagers are being invited to follow in the footsteps of last week’s Masters champion Danny Willett and try their hand at golf.
More than 50 pupils aged between 14 and 16 from four Coventry schools have taken part in Brandon Wood Golf Club’s Junior Introduction to Golf initiative, which aims to attract more youngsters to the sport.
Over the course of the visits, pupils – many of whom have not played the sport before – are shown an educational golf video filmed by the club’s PGA Professional, Lewis Baker, before being given a tour of the driving range and then taking to the course themselves to practise putting and attempt drives.
Hoping to inspire the next generation of Coventry golfers, Mr Baker said: “Having been in the industry for almost 12 years I’ve found that there can sometimes be misperceptions about golf.
“But experience has shown there is no age too young to start playing and by starting early, golfers can learn the fundamentals of the game and establish the skills for long-term success.
“The workshops were originally offered to test the water with schools but as so many showed interest – and pupils were so enthusiastic – we’re now looking to offer similar workshops exclusively to girls as well later in the summer.”
Blue Coat Church of England School, Lyng Hall School, Foxford School and Caludon Castle School have all sent pupils on the course.
Craig Mckee, PE teacher at Caludon Castle said: “Caludon Castle has been working to increase enrichment across the school, so the Introduction to Golf workshop was the perfect opportunity for pupils to try something new.
“Although most of the class had never played, some had already demonstrated an interest in the sport before so when we were offered the chance to bring a group to the course we jumped at it.
“Visits to the course are definitely something the school would like to continue – all of the pupils seemed to really enjoy the sessions.”
The initiative comes just after the golf club announced it was the first in Coventry and Warwickshire to be accredited as a key learning destination by Children’s University – an international scheme which aims to boost extracurricular learning among schoolchildren.
Wendy Jackson, community development manager at Coventry Sports Foundation – which provides consultancy services to Coventry Sports Trust-managed Brandon Wood – said: “The Foundation is delighted that the Introduction to Golf programme is proving so popular with schools.
“Participating in outdoor sports is proven to be among the most effective ways of learning, and sports such as golf allow children to develop a unique skillset different to those gained from team sports.”
Brandon Wood Golf Course will now offer tutoring sessions for junior players at weekends and during half term holidays.