Once your junior golfer has been playing for a while, they may become interested in the idea of competing in tournaments. It’s a natural progression for the serious young golfer and a great opportunity to get a feel for what it’s like to compete. In order to give your child the best chance for success, there are a few things to consider.
Kids can start to compete as young as just six years old, with many tournaments having fairly broad age groups. The reason why this is important is that seven year-olds could be competing with ten year-olds and their different emotional and skill levels can have a big impact on how they handle competition. Keep these tips in mind to ensure that your young golfer gets the most out of the competitive experience.
1. In the weeks before the tournament, have your child practice frequently. The more they play, the more comfortable they will be, which will allow them to play their best.
2. Make sure they get enough rest. If they are tired, they will have trouble staying focused.
3. Have them eat a good breakfast. Lack of nutrition can have them feeling weak or distracted by hunger.
4. Learn the golf course. If they have the opportunity, walking or playing the course can get them familiar with it, which can help them to relax.
5. Focus on fun. When kids are starting young, they will develop skills as they play. The most important thing is to make sure they are having fun.
6. Don’t worry about their score. It’s normal when playing in a tournament to be thinking about the score, but when first starting out, it’s best to just let them play.
7. Stay positive. At first, competing isn’t comfortable for many young golfers so it is important to be positive and encouraging no matter how they are playing. Sometimes it just takes a little time.
The goal for that first tournament should be to have fun and get a feel for competing. If your child decides that they enjoy it, they will improve over time.