The IRGF believes the concept of TEAM GOLF (10 events per year) and HIGH PROFILE INDIVIDUAL COMPETITION (2 events per year) will attract and help to retain young boys and girls to the game. With the concept of team events and individual events, AJGTS intends to elevate these players to new heights in enthusiasm, excellence in player development and good citizenship. The team concept has proven to be successful in attracting young players to other sports including soccer, Little League baseball, football, lacrosse, etc. Most young athletes are attracted to sports because of what their friends are playing.
Until young golfers reach their high school years, golf is an individual sport…..individual effort and individual achievement. Even then, high school golf lasts only 2 months of the year. Because of this individual approach, many young players fall short of their goals and lose interest in the game. Others want more but lack the support of friends, leadership and community paving the way. That is why the AJGTS exists today (sanctioned by the Amateur Athletic Union) …..to provide these opportunities and to encourage continued participation in the game and at the highest levels desired.
When the majority of young players reach the ages of 13 to 14, they begin to realize they are not making progress to keep up with the successful few in the game. The successful few receive most of the attention and are happy to see their names and scores in newspapers. This lack of progress and declining enthusiasm by the majority of players is directly related to several contributing components:
1) Level of parental initiative,
2) Level of professional training and guidance on an on-going basis,
3) Access to affordable golfing opportunities and
4) Number of friends involved in the game
All this results in insufficient inner personal drive to get out to practice and play. It is the exception to find an individual who is attracted to the game without these components in place. The balance of young players walk away from the game and play infrequently or on a seasonal basis.
Over the history of team sports, the more successful teams establish a common purpose……and that is to REACH TEAM GOALS. These goals are measured in the success of INDIVIDUAL and TEAM performance in tournaments, matches and how they conduct themselves in everyday life. Through the team approach and proper leadership, they learn the value of individual effort and support for each other. They begin to UNITE AS A TEAM. Players BELIEVE in themselves and each other. CONFIDENCE is gained…..an incredible TOGETHERNESS and BOND. They don’t want to let each other down. Players become close and committed to the sport.