Whilst the rich old man in plaid is the stereotypic image of who most golf players are, it is actually not representative of reality. The not for profit organisation, the Golf Foundation, is of the view that golf is and should be a game for everyone. No matter your gender, age, level of ability, or your socio-economic status, you should be able to enjoy playing golf just like you might any other sport. However, many people are discouraged from trying golf because they feel it would be too expensive; it has been described as the most expensive sport one can play. Gear can cost a lot to buy, and membership fees alone can be exorbitantly expensive. However, it doesn’t have to be this way, as golf is really as expensive (or cheap) as you choose to make it.
The governing body for amateur golf activities in England created the Get Into Golf national campaign for the purpose of encouraging people of all demographics to try their hand at golf, perhaps for the first time, without any risk. Since there are many ways to play your first game of golf without spending a lot of money, there needn’t be anything to lose. So far they have supported over 1,900 golf clubs and 651,000 amateur players of golf. Thanks to their work, there are many golf clubs all over the country that offer taster sessions to induct newbies to the sport; their website features a search tool that enables new players to find their nearest golf club that offers Get Into Golf activities.
Another organisation dedicated to bringing the game of golf to the masses is the Golf Foundation. They are a registered charity that started up in 1952, with the objective of providing young people of any background with the opportunity to experience playing golf. The Golf Foundation’s Skills for Life initiative is focused on encouraging children and young people to take up golf not only as a hobby but as a supplement to their development. The foundation believes that the sport provides a safe and fun environment that helps to build children’s confidence, self-motivation and various necessary life skills.
There are many other cheap ways to play some rounds, even without going anywhere near a golf club. Miniature golf and crazy golf are scaled-down versions of the game that are more suitable for families with young children. It is often reasonably priced and more widely accessible, with courses often featured at arcades and theme parks. If however, the mini version of the game isn’t big or realistic enough for you (the grass is fake and the courses are often indoors), you could always improvise by turning your own backyard into a golf course. Simply dig a few small holes, buy some second-hand clubs and golf balls from a charity shop and put to your heart’s content!