PGA Magazine- Best Teaching Practices

12/22/2010 12:04


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Randy Chang, the 2003 Aloha PGA Section Teacher of the Year and the 2010 Southern California PGA Section Teacher of the Year, is the PGA director of instruction at Talega Golf Club in San Clemente, Calif.


Form Partnerships With Local Camps, Clubs and Activities

Randy Chang on the importance of forming partnerships:
Every summer, our junior golf camps compete with local surf camps, soccer camps, football camps, etc. for kids to participate in golf. This means that both parents and kids have to make decisions regarding time constraints and budget. Well, instead of fighting and competing against these other camps, why not join them? Do some research on popular summer camps, clubs or activities in your area and reach out to them. In San Clemente, surf camps are completely booked throughout the summer by the month of April. We decided to partner up with an established surf camp whose owner/surf pro is an avid golfer, and the "Surf-n-Turf" camp was born. Now, instead of spending the whole day at the beach for a week, the juniors surf from 8-11 a.m., change, and are transported to Talega Golf Course where they have a nice lunch at the clubhouse, then golf or learn how to golf from 1-4 p.m. Monday-Friday. We used Kelly Slater as an example of a surfer who loves to play golf (actually a scratch golfer, I hear), and some of the PGA Tour professionals who love to surf in our marketing campaign. Baseball camps, science camps, dance camps – choose one of your hobbies or activities that already has a captive audience and see if that organizer or coach is a golfer. Then all you need to do is schedule it. How's this one ... "Books and Birdies." Check out your local book clubs that generally meet once a month, usually women, and spend an hour reading, then one hour learning how to golf. Boy Scouts now have a golf merit badge, and Cub Scouts are always looking for something fun to do outside.

Randy Chang on the business impact of forming partnerships:
The program costs $595 for a five-day session with each individual session priced at $150, so the profits are quite substantial. Program participants also have the chance to play for free at Talega during late twilight when accompanied by a paying adult, which helps to increase rounds. To keep our industry alive and our lesson books filled we have to develop new golfers and introduce people to this wonderful game. Our club has since gained a large group of young students who are eager to learn as a result of this partnership. Parents who may not have been introduced to the game otherwise have also booked lessons after experiencing their child's involvement. You don't have to put hundreds of dollars into advertising to promote yourself and your facility. Cross-train and that work is already done. Now we just have to do what we're good at: teaching.

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