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The Niggle: Do you think golf is too expensive?

The Niggle: Do you think golf is too expensive?

Is cost one of the biggest issues behind people not playing golf regularly or taking up the sport in the first place?
 

A member of our Lady Golfer team has recently decided she wants to take up golf. 

She has booked herself a series of beginner lessons and has documented week 1 in a blog here >> 

http://www.nationalclubgolfer.com/articles/article/lady-golfer-golf-lessons-for-beginners-week-1.html

This was quite a big financial commitment to book herself onto the five-week course but felt it necessary to give herself the best chance of mastering the golf swing so she can progress further.

Clubs, clothes, shoes, playing a round or even membership haven’t even been considered yet.

So is golf actually too expensive? Or is it just the perception of golf that it is too expensive?

Members of the team at National Club Golfer debate the issue.

James Savage (JS) – Golf is a tough sport when starting from scratch so you need at least five lessons to get going. You then need some clubs, clothes and shoes. That’s a fair few quid before you’ve even paid for a round, let alone membership. 

Make lessons free for beginners to give them the best chance of sticking with it.

Tom Irwin (TI) – You can buy a bucket of range balls for £3, borrow a club and you are doing golf for practically nothing. 
It is not too expensive, in fact quite the opposite, it is the perception of cost that is the problem" If you want to take to the course there’s deals at clubs up and down the country for as little as £10 per round, second-hand starter sets are available for less than a pair of decent trainers.  

So it is not too expensive, in fact quite the opposite, it is the perception of cost that is the problem.

Daniel Cooper (DC) – I disagree TI. It’s not a perception it’s a reality I’m afraid. I would love to play more, particularly at the weekend, but my local club charge £35-£40 a time which I can’t justify on a regular basis especially when you rely on friends (playing partners) to stump up the cash too!

TI – More and more clubs are offering flexible memberships to fit in with peoples budgets and the time constraints of modern life – again what is required is a shift in perception that these things are available and are not the poor relation to a ‘proper’ membership.

Andy Kenworthy (AK) – It’s not like football where you can just grab a ball and kick it about in a field. I know there are flexible memberships but there’s still a joining fee which is a huge commitment and not something you can dip in and out of.

Damien Wilde (DW) – I agree AK. I can get a full kit and a pair of top-drawer football boots for about £130. It then costs £5 a game tops to play. Sorted.

JS – TI is right that golf doesn’t have to be expensive but to be able to navigate your way round a golf course, you need to pay for some lessons otherwise you won’t enjoy it and won’t won’t to do it again. 

Golf is hugely rewarding when you do it well but highly frustrating when you don’t/can’t. Let’s help more people take up golf by having free/much cheaper lessons for beginners. 

IS GOLF TOO EXPENSIVE?

GIVE US YOUR VIEWS IN THE COMMENTS BOX BELOW

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James Savage

Former equipment editor of NCG. Inconsistent ball-striker and tea-maker.

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