Playground fun for learning golf: teachers in the Algarve to provide golf classes to young children
– May 18, 2015
Teachers in the Algarve and other regions of Portugal are learning how to impart basic golf skills to young people. Male and female teachers who successfully complete the PGF (Portuguese Golf Federation) accredited courses are then qualified to provide young people with the opportunity to learn about and play golf. David Moura of the PGF explains how courses for teachers are structured.
“Accreditation is offered on two levels and teachers will complete Level 1 and have the option of then progressing to Level 2.” David also stresses that the PGF puts a great emphasis on introducing very young children to golf. “We want to introduce young people to the game before they are possibly distracted by other interests. Then we hope to see them develop a love and maybe even a talent for golf.” Golf teachers work in schools with the young people using the resources provided by the PGF Project Drive programme.
This allows children to experience some fun golf-related activities like the `urban golf‘ activity and the `TRI-golf‘ scheme (a joint venture involving schools, councils and golf clubs). As the equipment provided includes plastic clubs and balls, pupils can learn the basics of golf indoors as well as outdoors.
Playing on a golf course is the ultimate target although activities like `urban golf‘ can be played anywhere including the playground and children can learn basic skills and golf etiquette from accredited teachers. Level 2 teachers might also provide support for golf clubs by teaming up with local golf professionals. David Moura believes that there is great potential in this approach although cautions against assuming that effective teamwork can be taken for granted.
“There is no substitute for input from a golf professional. However, if the distinctive roles of both the teacher and the professional are planned and agreed then everyone can benefit – especially our junior golfers. For example, some golf pros in the Algarve welcome assistance from a fluent Portuguese speaker when coaching juniors and this is an area where the partnership can work really well.”
There are various schools and centres along the Algarve where training for golf teachers is taking place. With almost 40 teachers in every class learning and working towards recognised PGF teaching accreditation the prospects for sustainable partnerships between schools, councils and clubs can only be good news for the prospects of junior golf in the Portugal.