The program from a PGA professional perspective

By: Dean Saunders, PGA Professional & coach October 12, 2017

I thought to ask a coach to find out how does this program work actually. I asked Dean Saunders a PGA Professional and coach at Girton Golf Club (UK).

What attracted you to become a coach?

After speaking with Alastair (=Alastair Spink, Head Coach of about the program I could see that this style of coaching is something that would appeal to lots of women. Prior to joining, my client base was already 60% female so I saw this as a good business opportunity to gain more knowledge on how/what is best practice for coaching women.

Dean Saunders – PGA Professional and coach at Girton Golf Club

What makes the program attractive for women?

Feedback from my groups has shown they really enjoy the “have a go” ethos. Rather than stand on the range for hour after hour hitting golf balls they are straight out on the golf course.

This is obviously very different to many other coaching programmes; at first, they all looked quite shocked when I told them at their first session that in 20 mins they will be out playing on the golf course, but after that first session they all leave on such a high and it just makes so much sense. It gives them such a buzz and they are hooked straight away!

Do you know any other similar program for women?

As far as I am aware, is a unique program. It’s based upon academic study and consumer insight but is so much more than that. The team also supports us through regular webinars and get-togethers and this gives us the opportunity to share best practice and experiences with fellow coaches.

What did you do to attract women to your first project?

I initially looked at who would be the biggest employers of women in our local area and then contacted them to find out who would be the best person to engage in conversation. I then followed up with an email explaining more about and attached a flyer for them to send out to their female employees. I also arranged for an extensive leaflet drop in our area prior to the first project as well as featuring the programme in our weekly newsletter that goes out to all of our members.

How do you keep up the engagement with the newcomer female golfers during and after the program? What are your recommendations?

We send out emails after each coaching session with a recap of the key discussions and learning points. We also encourage the love.golfers to keep in contact with each other so they can meet up in-between the sessions to practice and play together.

This obviously leads to a strong community spirit and I think this is the key component for retention and ensuring new golfers become regular participants. Also, isn’t just one initial programme; we have many follow-on projects to ensure all areas of the game and relevant skills are covered, so the experience never ends!

How would you improve the program?

That’s a really difficult question to answer! This is my first year of being a coach and I am delighted with the results and support to date. It feels as though I am part of something special. Currently, there are around 30 coaches so I guess a few more could only help to strengthen our community moving forward.

*The photo was made by Kevin Diss.