USGTF Launches New Student Spotlight Section

Last month, we featured a new section in our monthly e-newsletter where we highlighted a student of a USGTF member and their success. If you have a student and are interested in featuring them in one of our upcoming newsletters, please complete the form at the following link: https://www.usgtf.com/student-profile-form. We will select one student to be featured each month. In addition to the feature on the student, the teacher can provide other information, such as giving a brief description of what the instruction entailed and how it helped their student, etc.

INSIDE NEWS

A recent USGTF onsite certification course held in Fort Pierce, Florida, on April 5-9 had seven candidates. Interest in USGTF certification has increased in 2021 and indications are this trend will continue. USGTF certification courses are being held nationwide to meet this demand as we head into the heart of the golf season for most of the country. Also, in response to many requests, a new certification site in the Midwest will be realized when Evansville, Indiana, joins the roster of locations. The course will be held in September. The exact time and location will be decided shortly.

Tournament Central

Registration is now open for the 25th annual US Golf Teachers Cup to be held October 18-19 at the Revere Golf Club in Las Vegas, Nevada. Click here to learn more! USGTF regional events are a great way to compete against and meet your fellow USGTF members. If you’d like to play in one, simply contact the regional director. Southeast – Tournament completed. Northeast – June 17, Mountain View Golf Course, Ewing, New Jersey. Entry fee $165. Contact region director Bob Corbo at simductivegolf@gmail.com. Central – August 1-2, Pheasant Run Golf Course, Canton, Michigan. Entry fee $215. Contact region director Brent Davies at btkadavies@comcast.net. Southwest – September 10-12, Golf Club at Twin Creeks, Allen, Texas. Entry fee $225 (includes Friday night dinner). Contact region director Bruce Sims at bsims@pga.com. Northwest…

WGTF News from Japan – Naoki Yoshida

USGTF-Japan member Naoki Yoshida teaches a number of prominent touring professionals, but his foray into teaching and coaching wasn’t a direct route. As a kid, he started playing golf but preferred baseball, tennis and soccer. Golf was pretty much last on the list. At the age of 18, he attended a golf academy in Australia headed by one of their prominent coaches. Yoshida found that the coach’s disdain for video was counter-productive, at least in his case. “All I could do then was to feel and understand what he said,” said Yoshida. “In the process of mastering a swing, it is not effective to depend only on feeling. When players understand the method and make it an automatic motion, feeling-based learning requires much more time. So, I bought a video…

Tour “PRO” File – Hideki Matsuyama

The world of pro golf took yet another international turn as Hideki Matsuyama became the first person from Asia to win the Masters. The Japanese star surged ahead during a third-round 65, taking a four-shot lead into the final round. He held steady until the 15th hole, where he hit his second shot into the water, resulting in a bogey. Xander Schaffele cut the deficit to two shots with a birdie of his own, and as anyone knows, anything can happen at any time on the back nine at Augusta National. Schauffele literally sank his chances when his tee shot on the par-3 16th found the water, resulting in a triple bogey. Matsuyama, although he made a three-putt bogey on the same hole, regained his four-shot lead over Schauffele and…

Teaching “PRO” File – Ken Butler

Ken Butler was born and raised in Scotland, the “home of golf,” where he learned the game of golf early on. He says golf and soccer have always been in his blood. Competing competitively, he made his way to the United States in 1984. He stopped competing in late 1980s with a severe back injury that still nags him today. In 1992, he became certified as a USGTF teaching professional and then gained his Master Golf Teaching Professional certification. eventually becoming part of the USGTF and WGTF examining staff. He has traveled all over the world with the WGTF, including three trips to the Far East. He has represented Team USA in nine World Golf Teachers Cup events and is a past WGTF individual champion. Butler was nominated as a…

Student Spotlight – Steve Haigler

Steve Haigler, a high school teacher in Tampa, came to my six-week golf school about eight years ago. He started with the maximum handicap of 36. After completing the class, he applied all he learned and started to really improve. Today, he plays to a 22 handicap and regularly shoots in the mid to low 90s. Steve later followed in his instructor’s path and started playing with hickory golf clubs as a member of the Florida Hickory Golfers. That makes the improvement in his handicap even more significant because of the difficulty playing with clubs used 100 years ago. Steve has traveled to Scotland to participate in several World Hickory Opens at courses like Carnoustie, Gullane and Panmure, where Ben Hogan practiced for the Open Championship. He also played on…

Editorial – The Value of Competition

By Mark Harman, USGTF Director of Education Our great game of golf has always engendered the competitive spirit in its practitioners. The Open, formerly known as the British Open, is the longest-running formal competition in golf history, but players and clubs competing against each other existed long before. Today, a lot of money exchanges hands on golf courses all around the world. It has been noted that in peak golf season, it is likely that over $1 million is wagered daily among friends on American courses! Competing gives us insight into how we ourselves may handle certain situations. In a tough spot, do we panic and hope for the best? Or do we calmly assess the situation and make a logical game plan to execute the next shot? Are we internally calm or are we overcome…