This fall, the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community Recreation Department has enrolled 20 children ages 6-12 for golf lessons. The students have been meeting every Monday for the six-week class. The first class was held on October 11 at the Riverview Golf Course in Mesa. Children learned and practiced how to hold and swing a golf club. All the equipment and the instruction was provided by Riverview Golf Club.
The main goal of the first lesson was to learn proper grip, swing the club and hold the finish as the children took turns at the driving range. “Pretend like your thumb is a hot dog and your other hand is the bun,” explained Craig Porter, the instructor. This took a while for the children to understand, especially those children in the group under age seven. But after a few tries they had no problem learning the grip, holding the club and hitting the ball. Learning the proper golf grip is important because it gives players significant advantages of hitting straight, solid shots. And it can also make you a powerful golfer.
Porter, who is very passionate about golf, made sure the children were aware of their surroundings when they were out on the course; they needed to be careful not to hit each other with the irons.
The children have several weeks to perfect their skills, and some of them are returning students from the last golf class, which was earlier this year in the spring.
Balance and posture were also taught to the future golfers. Porter asked the children to work on their golf stance at home before they left the golf course that evening so they would be ready for the next week’s class, in which the group worked on their swing and making chip shots.