Is that title over the top? Maybe a bit, but the idea that Matt wants to pitch to you and golf courses everywhere is absolutely serious. Is this the future of golf? Listen to find out.
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Founder, Editor In Chief at PluggedInGolf.com
Matt is the Founder and Editor in Chief of Plugged In Golf. He's worked in nearly every job in the golf industry from club fitting to instruction to writing and speaking. Matt lives in the northwest suburbs of Chicago with his wife and two daughters.
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Matt – you suggest some great ideas, buuut …. it all comes down to (ALWAYS comes down to) .. the Almighty Dollar…
Courses .. including munis .. are under constant pressure to generate revenue; as much as possible. Easiest, most direct way to accomplish that is to pack the tee times and rent out carts.
Sure they could raise prices for greens fees and limit tee times but then many courses – especially here in the East – will fear losing traffic and overall revenue to nearby competitors.
Perhaps… Another way for courses to differentiate themselves is to assign, just as an example say, 3 days a week to beginners / slow play and 3 days a week to more advanced / fast play..? (7th day is as-is / catch-all).
Another offbeat idea… Courses should also, imho, promote more and more clearly *whom* / what player type their course is more suitable for; and should also, imho, mark each tee position as suitable for eg. beginner / 150 yd drive vs advanced / 250 yd drive (as an analogy I’m thinking of the sign posts on ski trails).
And… A course might also field a squad of volunteer marshals (who get free playing privileges) – with one marshal at every green to enforce pace of play.
I’m all for the last idea that cksurfdude made: let’s get more Marshalls out there with free playing privileges. Also, have Marshalls at the 1st and 10th tees, and have the golfers show their hcp before going to the tee (not hard with today’s phone apps). Have them start from 2 choices of tees based on hcp–give them no option and only apply it to 1st or 9th tee. Combine that with Matt’s ideas of different types of courses. That could encourage players to discover their true level of play, instead of playing above their level, and slowing down the pace due to errant slices and mishits from tees that are beyond them.
In Florida, at The Villages, rounds usually last only 4-4.5 hrs by golfers playing “ready golf,” using Marshals, and having a wide variety of courses available (both executive and championship courses).