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The Loop

Calling It Quits: Studying ex-golfers

November 21, 2013

From the Nov. 20 edition of Golf Digest Stix:


*Enough! Most former golfers quit because they're not having fun. Photo: Cy Cyr *

The real problem with golf participation isn't the lack of new golfers but the loss of current ones, a National Golf Foundation study suggests. Though the number of golfers dropped slightly in 2012 (from 25.7 million to 25.3 million), golf has lost 4.7 million participants since 2005. The NGF studied former golfers and concluded that about two-thirds of them were "never committed" to the game. Most quit because they "just weren't having any fun."

Among their reasons: lack of skill, not being comfortable on the course, frustration and difficulty of the game. Says the NGF: "Making golfers feel more comfortable on the course is paramount to retention, as is helping beginners feel good enough about their skills to lessen frustrations and eliminate embarrassment."