Disc Golf is now more popular than even with no signs of it slowing down.
The PDGA has done such a great job of providing an outlet for the competitive adult disc golfer. The collegiate championships will certainly grow the sport at the college level, but not much has been done nationally to create more play among kids under 16.
A few years back myself and other members of our club here in ST Louis, wanted to run more events geared for kids, but the board at the time wasn’t quite sure if bringing kids out to our events was a good idea. Disc golf has been long known for its counter culture side and ” extra curricular activities” that have become the norm. We actually had a vote about trying to attract kids under 16 to play at our events. At the time, the consensus was that our members didn’t want to give up their behavior in favor of more kids playing at our events. There was an effort made to run JR only events, but unfortunately after a few low turnouts the direction was abandoned.
Over the last 10 years there has been a 30% drop in JR play in Ball golf, but more recently the number of kids playing golf has risen and is now on a huge increase as high school and jr golf is more popular than ever,, especially amongst girls.
The PGA has several programs including First TEE and the Drive, Chip and putt competition ( based on the NFL’s punt, pass and kick) and these programs are churning out the young golfers of the future.
Yes we ( disc golf) does have the E.D.G.E. program, but after a closer look this program appears to be more of a marketing program for one particular company. Ive tried on several occasions to donate 500 discs to the program, but my efforts were not welcome.
I feel its time for the pdga or maybe a new group of promoters to spend the time energy and money that is necessary to establish JR disc golf as part of the sport.
I’m writing this blog to start the discussion as whether or not the current organized entities in the sport are ready to do whats necessary to allow kids to play WITH us or is a separate JR disc golf the only way this will work?
Please repost this article on your local club message board or share with your friends on Facebook and twitter and go to our website and vote on what you think is the best direction to head today.