2020 has been a year of adaptation for most people. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, families have flocked to more socially distant, outdoor activities. As a result, golf has seen a surge in participation this past season, especially among youth players.
Tiger Woods mentions that even his 11 year old son, Charlie, started playing a lot and got the “bug” for golf due to the pandemic this past year.
Organizations like Youth on Course have seen an increase in youth golf memberships and participation this past season with a significant surge in demand for access to playing golf among youth golfers. Total memberships exceeded 110,000 in 2020, up 55% from 2019 and total rounds played clocked in at over 400,000. A 100% increase from 2019.
The Junior golf “ecosystem” comprises multiple organizations and levels of play and competition for youth players. For example, First Tee focuses on being an introductory vessel for youth golfers, having impacted over 10 million golfers at some point in their golf journey.
As these organizations look to transition golfers from first time participants to life long lovers of the game, Prospects by Sports Illustrated is enhancing this pipeline of youth golfers by providing quality tournaments year round. With roughly 40% of current golfers being Millennials, the 8-18 age range has shifted towards Gen Z. This generational shift brings different challenges and opportunities for the industry moving forward.
According to the National Golf Foundation , last year’s participation report calculated 6.1 million youth golfers. With notable 2020 trends, this number is expected to jump by another 500,000 golfers.
Prospects by Sports Illustrated is excited to help continue the growth of youth golf through the offering of PSI tournaments and events. These tournaments coincide with the goals of all of those invested in the youth golf landscape by providing exposure for up and coming golfers to earn higher education, internship and career opportunities within the industry.