PGAs approve volunteer coaches

PGAs approve volunteer coaches for Olympic golf growth

Michael Vlismas

JOHANNESBURG (31 July 2015) - With golf's inclusion in the 2016 and 2020 Olympics being seen as a means to grow the game globally, the PGAs of the world have agreed on a new framework to allow more volunteer coaches to work in golf.

The framework was discussed and agreed upon at the PGA World Alliance meeting held on the weekend before the recent Open Championship in St Andrews.

This meeting takes place every 18 months and brings together the nine largest PGAs in the golf world, including the PGA of South Africa, which was represented by Chief Executive Ivano Ficalbi and Chairman Paul Marks.

"The focus of this meeting was to finalise the coaching framework for golf that is required by the International Golf Federation (IGF) and International Olympic Committee," said Ficalbi.

"Golf's inclusion in the Olympic Games will be a catalyst for the growth of the game around the world. This new coaching framework takes into account the role of the volunteer coach in the development of the game."

"The rules of golf are clear on earning a living from the game, and a volunteer coach is an accepted part of this where the basic development of the game is required."

An example of a volunteer coach in South Africa would be the current members of the PGA's Grow Golf Association, whereby schoolteachers and South African Golf Development Board (SAGDB) coaches are able to introduce young children to the game.

The PGA of South Africa also has a mandate from the Royal and Ancient (R&A) and PGA World Alliance to help facilitate the growth of the game and to upskill PGA professionals throughout Africa, and this framework will form a vital part of this.

"It will assist the PGA of South Africa to grow the game into African countries whereby volunteer coaches can be trained to introduce the game to young children within their communities and PGA professionals can then identify the talent and take them to the next level," said Ficalbi.

The Coaching Framework has been approved by the PGA World Alliance and adopted by the IGF in preparation for the Olympic Games in 2016 and 2020.

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About the PGA of South Africa

The Professional Golfers Association of South Africa is a members' organization of over 500 qualified Club Professionals. The PGA was founded in 1925 and lists amongst its members over the years many of South Africa's greatest golfers and most dedicated servants of the game.

The PGA is committed to training and serving golf pros whose principal aim is to offer a highly professional service to golfers in all aspects of the game.

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