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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

clubgolf volunteer coaches needed

for expanding Argyll & Bute programme

This term 64 of the 89 primary schools in Argyll & Bute will have golf on the curriculum through the national junior golf programme, clubgolf – giving as many as 750 Primary 5 children the opportunity to play the game.
clubgolf is a partnership between the Scottish Golf Union, the Scottish Ladies' Golfing Association, the Professional Golfers' Association, the Golf Foundation and sportscotland which emerged from Scotland’s successful bid to host the Ryder Cup.
Introducing a new generation of children to golf is only the first stage. Last summer 134 children progressed from the schools’ introductory game to clubgolf Stage 1 programmes at local golf clubs. With that number set to increase this summer a crucial task is recruiting nearby clubs and helping their members become fully qualified to offer a structured programme.
So far 12 Argyll & Bute golf clubs, with a growing bank of some 50 qualified volunteer coaches, are offering clubgolf coaching and seeing the benefit. But more are needed to keep the new generation of golfers involved and developing.
Taynuilt Golf Club, Oban delivered clubgolf last summer, beginning to transform its junior sections in the process.
“We want to give youngsters the opportunity to play because it’s a game you can play throughout your life,” said the club’s junior convener and clubgolf co-ordinator Murray Sim.
“The clubgolf initiative to give all youngsters the opportunity to try the game is very important as far as we are concerned because these are going to be our future members.
“We had a very good uptake of 12 children last year. I don’t think these children would have played golf if it wasn’t for the clubgolf coaching.”
The view is shared among the region’s other clubs hosting clubgolf coaching.
Helensburgh GC’s clubgolf co-ordinator and junior convener, Stewart Coutts said, “clubgolf is really the future of golf and it’s helped us in the way that our kids enjoy the coaching and our 11 volunteer coaches enjoy coaching them.
“Golf can be quite difficult to learn to start with but clubgolf teaches children the basics and once they learn them they’ll enjoy the game far more and are more likely to stick at it. One or two of our kids are already progressing to good golfers.”
Tarbert GC’s clubgolf co-ordinator, John McNab said, “The clubgolf Level 1 coaching course was enjoyable, thorough and very worthwhile and it’s given us the tools to be able to coach children.
clubgolf’s main asset is that it gives a structured programme of coaching. It’s given us a focus of what we need to do each week and a focus of how to teach children.
On Monday 19th January Tarbert Golf Club will be hosting a clubgolf information event, starting at 7.00pm.
Then from March 14-16 clubgolf will be running a training course for would be volunteer coaches at Lochgilphead. The course’s closing date is 30th Jan.
If you are a golf club interested in finding out more about clubgolf, a volunteer who is interested in getting involved as a helper or a golf coach, or a parent looking for a local clubgolf programme for your child, please contact Colin Bell on:
Tel: 07882 364340