SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) – With many Arizona kids are still doing online schooling, they’ve had to get creative when it comes to physical education classes. Golf coaches said they’re seeing more kids taking lessons.
“It’s been a rough year for a lot of people but golf is one of those bright spots that allow people to really come out and enjoy the outdoors,” said Matt Cook, an assistant golf professional at Quintero Golf Club. “We have seen a spike in the amount of juniors starting to come into our camps and our clinics, so it’s been a real positive that kids have been able to get out there.”
Quintero Golf Club started a junior golf league that runs from Oct. 18 through December.
“Junior golf is all about having fun. It’s not always about technique because golf can be very complicated, very complex,” Cook explained. “For the juniors especially, we want to make sure that we keep it fun and active and keep them moving, because nowadays there’s (sic) very short attention spans, so we want to make sure that we maximize in a very short amount of time what they’re learning and how they’re learning.”
The coaches use targets, such as hula-hoops and nets, to teach kids techniques.
“My favorite thing to teach them is short game. That is always an absolute blast because they get to put it into the cup or into the hole,” Cook said. “Short game is always one of the more fun areas in which we can really have a great time with the kids. They get to have a lot of excitement around that. We create different contests and games for them, but short game is really where that fun begins.”
Not to mention, Cook says golf is good for physical and mental health.
“When you hit an object and it feels good, oh my goodness. I tell you what–that leads to that activity level to where you’re walking. They get to keep up a pace to where it is active, it is physical activity for them, and they get to have those moments of fun in the interim,” Cook said. “It’s really getting out there and being able to clear your mind and just enjoying the day.”
John and Jayden Poe say they have been enjoying golf lessons.
“I like how it angles down and then it slides up,” said 7-year-old Jayden.
Jayden and his brother John, who is 10 years old, said the most valuable lesson they’ve learned so far is “posture, grip and alignment.”
Cook says the best part about being an instructor is watching the kids fall in love with the game.
“Being able to give something like that back, especially to junior golfers, I can’t even put it into words. It just makes me proud as a golf professional,” Cook said.