Maybe you are looking to get your son/daughter into golf? Or maybe you want to know how much time and the cost it will take to learn the game yourself? Regardless, I can help you come away with a good idea on how long it takes to learn the game of golf.
To learn the rules, basic swing fundamentals, purchase the right equipment and understand golf course strategy will take the average individual 3-5 months to learn.
I have come up with this timetable from my years of experience teaching brand new golfers about the game. Of course, this time frame also depends on how badly the individual wants to learn and if they put effort into practice.
Best Places to Learn Golf
Now that you have an idea of how long it might take to learn the game, the next step is where do you go to practice and learn?
Probably the most obvious place to learn about the game of golf is at… a golf course. Just going out onto the course with some friends will teach you so much about the game. I recommend doing this if you have never played golf before just to shadow your friends and observe how they play the game. Heck, they might even let you drive the golf cart!
Another great place to learn the game is at the driving range. When I was a young kid, this was where I went weekly to learn how to swing a club. It is stress-free and relaxing to take your time working on your swing. Just google your local driving ranges, grab a bucket of golf balls for $5 and swing away. If you do not have golf clubs, most driving ranges have rental sets that you can borrow.
Simulators are becoming more popular with places like XGolf and Top Golf. The graphics are also much improved over the years which can bring a real-time golfing feel without the stress of having to walk to your ball and worry about other people on the golf course. In my opinion, simulators best help beginning golfers who are feeling uncomfortable about swinging get used to the basic understanding of the game.
Ah, my personal favorite. Taking golf lessons is probably the best way to learn golf. Your instructor will teach you:
- Rules of the game (probably the most important for beginners)
- Swing fundamentals
- Course Strategy
- Mental Strategy
- Physical Exercises
Like anything new you want to learn, it best to learn from a professional teacher. I have a full article here on everything you need to know about taking a golf lesson if you are curious.
Want to save money and learn about the game of golf from your couch? Just hit up YouTube! There are some awesome golf instructors there who make videos just for beginners! Seriously, just head over to YouTube and type in any golf question you have and I guarantee that someone has made a video about it. This is one of the easiest ways to get your golf questions answered so that you can learn the game faster.
Websites (like this one) are another great way to learn about the game of golf. Sometimes you just don’t have 5-7 minutes to watch a video for the answer and simply just want to get an answer quickly. I must admit, I am one of these people. But luckily for me and those like me, the internet has all the answers! Google is just getting smarter and smarter to where your answer literally will pop up .14 seconds. For example, google “how far should you hit a 7 iron?” boom answered. Next!
How Much Does it Cost to Learn
Next up, is cost. Golf can be expensive if you don’t know what you’re doing. Lucky for you, I am here to guide you. Here is a quick list below that you can use as a guideline for prices while learning the game so that you know what to expect:
- Driving Range – $5-$8 a bucket
- Golf Lesson – 45 minutes for $45
- Golf Round 18 Holes- $40
- Golf Round 9 Holes – $25
- Golf Clubs- $250-$1200 (more on golf clubs here)
- Golf Simulator $40 per hour
What Do You Need to Know If You’ve Never Played Before
As a beginning golfer having no idea about the game of golf, you are going to need to know the following information that I teach all my beginning students before going out onto the course. Feel free to search this site for some of these answers or check YouTube for some great visuals to learn from:
- How to grip the club
- How to stand for a swing
- How to swing
- The rules of the game
- Golf course strategy
- How to chip
- How to putt
- Course etiquette
- How to keep score
I know this may seem like a lot of info but remember, I said that it takes 3-5 months to learn the game enough to be able to play by yourself. So just pace yourself and you’ll be playing in no time
What About Juniors?
Junior golf is slightly different depending on their age. For example, kids that are younger than 10 years old, from my experience, will probably learn best from group lessons or golf clinics held at your local golf course. This is because their muscle coordination is still developing so in order to understand and retain information, fun games and activities need to be implemented for the juniors to learn.
At our golf courses, we do the Snag Golf program which uses large plastic clubs, tennis balls and velcro targets to make the learning process fun and simple. If you are interested, you can read more about Snag Golf here
How Long Does it Take To Become a Scratch Golfer?
A scratch golfer is a golfer that shoots a score equal to or below the par of the course. For example, if the par of the golf course is 72, a scratch golfer will shoot a score of 72 or lower.
To become this good, it will take many years following all of these steps:
- Continued practice weekly at the driving range
- Continued playing about 3-5 times per week
- Personal golf instructor at least once per week
- Competitive golf play either in high school, college or local tournaments
- Top of the line golf equipment
- A love of the game
Golfers who get this could are obsessed ( I’d know because I’m one of them). They get the golf itch and they can’t stop learning to get better. If I really had to boil it down, it will take someone 5-20 years following all of the above steps to become a scratch golfer. And some might not ever get to this level aka me! But it’s all for the love of the game. And the good news for us is that we can play golf for as long as we want to.
How Long Did It Take Me?
Not that you really care but I’ll tell you anyway. I started playing golf when I was 8 years old. I started to play in leagues and tournaments when I was 14 years old. After playing in high school and college, I started to get into teaching golf and become a PGA member and professional instructor.
I shoot around 72-77 for 18-holes and I have been playing for 22 years
- On average it will take a brand new golf 3-5 months of constant learning to be able to play the game of golf at a comfortable level.
- You can learn the game of golf at an accelerated rate hiring a Golf Instructor, watching YouTube Videos or asking questions on Google.
- To teach juniors under the age of 10, it might be best to enroll them in local junior golf programs or group lessons to help make golf fun to keep their interest.
- Becoming a scratch golfer can take 5-20 years of intense practice and instruction.