It’s important to consider your personal goals with golf. Is the game for you? To determine that with the least financial investment, Bryon Gribbons, general manager at The Duke, suggests renting a set of clubs to try it out first.
“We rent out sets of clubs,” Gribbons said. “That’s a good way to see if it’s something you are interested in doing, because it can be an expensive sport.”
If you want to get serious, the next step is to purchase a set. This can be tricky, as Gribbons explained.
“It could cost anywhere from a couple of hundred bucks at a big-box store to a couple of thousand dollars, depending on what club situation you want to go with,” Gribbons said.
Brady Wilson, general manager at Southern Dunes, said club customization is an important piece of the puzzle.
“Getting clubs fitted is an important part,” Wilson said. “Everyone is a different height and shape and will swing the club a little differently. If you have clubs fitted, your scores are going to improve quicker. And, at most places, it doesn’t cost any more to get clubs fitted. It just takes a little more time. Most of the time, you have to wait for them to come by special order.”
Now that you have decided you want to play golf and you’ve invested in clubs, the next step is instruction.
Gribbons said there’s guidance available at just about any price point.
“We have multiple teachers and offer clinics for beginners,” he said. “You can start by attending a clinic for $20-$30. You might want to get 30 minutes, or an hour with a professional for $50 to $100.”
Regardless of which route you take, it’s important to practice, Gribbons said.
“The most important thing is to get out and play,” he said. “Sometimes, people will schedule lessons with a professional and will not play between lessons. When you do that, you’re setting yourself up to have to go over the same problems.”
If you’re trying to learn the sport, another good idea is to play during less-busy times, like in the midafternoon.
“We advise newer players to go out when it’s slower,” Gribbons said. “It’s a lot more enjoyable if you’re not having to look over your shoulder for people behind you waiting to play.”
Gribbons said above all else, enjoyment is the prime goal of golf.
“We have people who just come out and hack at the ball and aren’t that concerned with lessons,” Gribbons said. “They are just out to have fun and as long as they’re keeping up with the pace of play, that’s fine.
“We don’t mind if you shoot 180, as long as you keep up with the pace of play and are having fun.
“That’s what golf is about, having fun.”