Thursday, October 21, 2010

Greg Norman, Annika Sorenstam worried about the future of golf

In an effort to find innovative ways for golf to be more "affordable and accessible", Greg Norman, Annika Sorenstam and golf creative thinkers convened at the fourth annual Asia Pacific Golf Summit.

This 'call to action' in Thailand was only one of several forums designed to effect a change in the sport in order to attract more newcomers and to keep the golfers that already play interested in the game. Earlier this year, a Golf Business Forum in Turkey tackled similar questions with both Norman and Sorenstam in attendance.

Believing interest in the sport has hit its limit and is now declining, Hud Hinton, Troon Golf president and chief executive officer warned that, "The game is too expensive to play, too difficult to play, too expensive to operate and the pace of play is too slow."

Greg Norman came up with an interesting idea regarding the premise that it takes too long to play a round of golf.

"There's nothing to say that a golf course has to be 18 holes. Why shouldn't 12-hole courses be successful in Asia?"

Although it seems like an age-old question, what suggestions would you make in order to improve the sport and to bring in newcomers?

My idea?
Children are the future of the sport so perhaps add golf to a school's curriculum? Instead of just playing dodge-ball in a gym where kids learn it's okay to hit one another in the head with a ball, golf can also teach the nine basic principles of the First Tee Program.

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