There are so many great junior golf camps available today. Parents are looking for one-day camps, overnight camps, instructional camps, exposure camps and/or development camps for their kids. Golf camps are a great idea for kids who enjoying playing golf or want to learn how to play. There are some key concepts every family should consider prior to registration.
Today’s junior golf camps range from little “kiddy” camps to advanced developmental camps. Most have some restrictions based on age, gender and/or the total number of campers. Skill set should definitely be considered when choosing a junior golf camp. Most camps will divide campers into groups based on skill levels or age.
Junior golfers who are advanced players looking for more player development, they will have needs that will be different from the youngsters just learning to play golf. Here are a few aspects to consider when choosing a junior golf camp.
Here are a few aspects to consider when choosing a junior golf camp.
- Goals – what are your goals of the camp? Every camp has its strengths, some are very intense on the swing mechanics while others are more geared towards the basics of the game. Identify your goals, then search for golf camps that will fulfill those goals.
- Location – There are some great golf camps all over the world. Decide how far you want to travel in order to attain the goals of the camp. Some camps are worth the travel especially if you’re looking of advanced instruction or interaction. However, check with your local PGA professional on his/her camp schedule. There might be a great camp opportunity in your backyard.
- Instructors – Obviously it is extremely important as to who is teaching the camp. For the “kiddy” camps it might be a local PGA professional or assistant. Those camps will be more relaxed and geared towards fun games with younger kids. For more advanced camps, they might have instructors from golf academies or college golf coaches or specialty coaches, such putting or gurus. Identify the best instructors for your goals. If your junior golfer has been playing golf for a long time, they might consider an exposure camp. Junior golf exposure camps can be a great opportunity for campers to learn more about college golf or professional golf.
- Camper/Instructor ratio – How many kids will be in the camp? How many instructors? Is there a cap on the number of campers? Is there a guarantee on the ratio? Golf is a sport that requires lots of attention, so the ratio needs to be small. Campers need to get the attention they deserve, so too many campers can be challenging.
- Camp curriculum – Again, there are many types of golf camps, such as short game camps, putting camps, girl only camps, etc. If your camper is a girl, you might want to check out LPGA golf camps, women’s college golf camps or girl only camps. Golf can be intimidating, so you want your camper comfortable but also challenged. More and more girls are learning the game of golf, sometimes it’s great to have boys at camp, and sometimes it’s better to just have girls.
- Cost of camp – Camps vary in price depending on how the number of days, location and what is included in the camp. Most camps have their own registration systems, it’s important to pay attention to any restrictions such as age, gender and number of campers. Some camps are more expensive because they offer a unique opportunity such as exposure to college golf or intense putting instruction. Compare what is included with the price and decide what best fits your needs.
At the end of the day, this is about managing your expectations, developing your child’s skill set and keeping the joy of playing this great game. Junior golf camps are a great way to improve your skills and knowledge of the game, but it can also be a great way to build friendships. Golf is a great social game that teaches great life skills, so encourage your camper to have a great attitude with an open-mind.
No matter what your daughter or son’s skill set, there are lots of benefits to attending junior golf camps. If you follow these guidelines, do the research and ask questions, you and your child will get the most out of your junior golf camp experience.
Nick Rook founded College Golf Camps of America, LLC in 2012 and serves as its Chief Executive Officer and President. He and his wife Jen have three children, Isaac(9), Lauren(7) and Emily(2).
A schedule of upcoming junior golf camps is available online at collegegolfcamps.com.
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