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At what point will the decline of golf be irreversible...


294 replies to this topic

#61 Ferguson

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 01:13 PM

View PostSantiago Golf, on 22 August 2017 - 12:29 PM, said:

Golf will still be golf

If you wanna see increase in the game and other athletic activities then you need to see 3 things happen

1) The government that a serious stance that being overweight isn't disease but people killing themselves (sorry thats what it is)
2) Good Education in school at early age that proper dieting (I prefer the eating lifestyle) and daily fitness are important. This includes more than 2 hours of physical activity for students a day until graduation along with class where they teach to cook healthy meals
3) its not okay to be lazy and spend all day in bed



You sound like a bitter gym teacher who wants his voice heard.

Edited by Ferguson, 22 August 2017 - 01:14 PM.


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#62 Ferguson

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 01:24 PM

The decline comes from not knowing what made golf cool.  These modern guys can have their life coaches and frozen smoothie protein shakes.


This American golfer, smoking and wearing a few extra pounds, is the epitome of cool.
(and he happens to be the best)


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#63 llewol007

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 01:39 PM

Its just going back to what is usually is, a game for those who have extra time and extra money. This day in age, people are making less money=less disposable income=working more=no time for golf. Add to that the attention span of millennials who would much rather play Pokeman Go than be on a golf course.
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#64 Soloman1

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 01:44 PM

View Postsuprfli6, on 22 August 2017 - 07:18 AM, said:

View PostSoloman1, on 21 August 2017 - 09:26 PM, said:

The graph of obesity rates is inverse to the decline of sports. The reasons for that may be the things to look at...
Participation rates in high school sports are higher now than they were 25 years ago. And childhood obesity in the US has been generally flat in the last decade, although it is starting to trend higher again but data is limited.

Since we're all posting anecdotes and opinions as if they were facts; I'm a millennial and my golf participation is infinitely higher now than ten years ago so obviously golf is exploding and we need to build as many courses as possible!

I'm in the golf business. I deal with facts and not anecdotes. Here are some facts:

Youth participation 2008-2013:

Basketball down 3.9%
Soccer down 10.75%
Baseball down 14.4%
Football down 28.6%
Softball down 31.3%

Obesity rate is increasing less, but the Overweight category is increasing. The net effect is overweight and obesity are increasing.
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#65 knock it close

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 01:50 PM

View PostSoloman1, on 22 August 2017 - 01:44 PM, said:

View Postsuprfli6, on 22 August 2017 - 07:18 AM, said:

View PostSoloman1, on 21 August 2017 - 09:26 PM, said:

The graph of obesity rates is inverse to the decline of sports. The reasons for that may be the things to look at...
Participation rates in high school sports are higher now than they were 25 years ago. And childhood obesity in the US has been generally flat in the last decade, although it is starting to trend higher again but data is limited.

Since we're all posting anecdotes and opinions as if they were facts; I'm a millennial and my golf participation is infinitely higher now than ten years ago so obviously golf is exploding and we need to build as many courses as possible!

I'm in the golf business. I deal with facts and not anecdotes. Here are some facts:

Youth participation 2008-2013:

Basketball down 3.9%
Soccer down 10.75%
Baseball down 14.4%
Football down 28.6%
Softball down 31.3%

Obesity rate is increasing less, but the Overweight category is increasing. The net effect is overweight and obesity are increasing.
How much of that do you think is linked to single sport kids? I was born in '94 and feel like I was at the tail end of people who played multiple sports. I played hockey in the winter, golf and baseball in the winter, gave up ball when I was 15, but it seems like kids now adays that are going to be anything in any sport seem to be single sport athletes by the time they are 12.

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#66 Ferguson

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 01:56 PM

View Postllewol007, on 22 August 2017 - 01:39 PM, said:

Its just going back to what is usually is, a game for those who have extra time and extra money. This day in age, people are making less money=less disposable income=working more=no time for golf. Add to that the attention span of millennials who would much rather play Pokeman Go than be on a golf course.


I think you meant to say discretionary income. That's the bucket from which we dip for golf.


Disposable Income is the amount leftover for spending and saving, after taxes.

Discretionary income is the amount leftover for spending, investments or saving after paying taxes and paying for personal necessities, such as food, shelter and clothing.  Discretionary income includes money spent on the non-essential things such as luxury items, services and vacations.

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#67 gioguy21

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 01:58 PM

View PostFerguson, on 22 August 2017 - 01:56 PM, said:

View Postllewol007, on 22 August 2017 - 01:39 PM, said:

Its just going back to what is usually is, a game for those who have extra time and extra money. This day in age, people are making less money=less disposable income=working more=no time for golf. Add to that the attention span of millennials who would much rather play Pokeman Go than be on a golf course.


I think you meant to say discretionary income. That's the bucket from which we dip for golf.


Disposable Income is the amount leftover for spending and saving, after taxes.

Discretionary income is the amount leftover for spending, investments or saving after paying taxes and paying for personal necessities, such as food, shelter and clothing.  Discretionary income includes money spent on the non-essential things such as luxury items, services and vacations.
swap discretionary with disposable and his post still makes the same point.

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#68 melo

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 02:30 PM

View Postllewol007, on 22 August 2017 - 01:39 PM, said:

Its just going back to what is usually is, a game for those who have extra time and extra money. This day in age, people are making less money=less disposable income=working more=no time for golf. Add to that the attention span of millennials who would much rather play Pokeman Go than be on a golf course.

And this is where the hypocrisy of golf exists. The above statement seems true, however, the peak years of our discretionary income are actually age 35-44. Which makes sense, especially in the current climate of people buying homes, getting married, and having children much later. So if it were about money, then younger people would be playing golf in DROVES. But they aren't. Discretionary income drops enormously after age 55, but that is the age group that makes up most of the loyal golfing public.

To further that. As we get ever close to a change, or even dismantling of medicare and social security, will the older folks even have money to play golf the way we are accustomed to seeing?

To take it a bit further, we are leaning on an entire population of people who make 100k+ per year. Recent data shows that discretionary income is nearly non-existent for families that make less than 75k per year, and increases dramatically at about 150k per year. If that's who we are tapping into, then elderly people will not be playing golf like they used to, and those people that everyone here continue to talk about "taking it up" in their 40's, are now the people who are going to have 2 year olds running around at that age. 50 years ago, at 45, people had a kid graduating college. Now at 45 people have a kid graduating preschool. That is not a recipe for picking up a sport that takes 4 hours at a time. It also raises the question of how long people will be working. Having a child at 40 might mean paying for them until you are 62, which doesn't leave a lot of time to plan for retirement. Will millennials be working until 70 or 75 because of cuts to social security and late starts to their families...
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#69 Soloman1

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 04:05 PM

Re: single sports

89% of athletes selected in the 2016 NFL draft played multiple sports throughout school. Only 11% played football only.
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#70 I just want to play golf.

I just want to play golf.

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 04:39 PM

As an absolute novice myself , I will tell you my story and maybe what is actually wrong with all this.
I was on holiday and we played a decent sized 18 hole pitch and putt. The place was clear, had signs and a very clear policy in writing at the entrance. We paid and set off for our couple hours of fun. So much we returned a few times. The way it was set up worked. Tees 3-4 deep and the place was packed. Ok , so that's pitch and putt and great for the family and the kids.
Me and the father in law loved it and decided to join the crazy world of golf. Firstly , we need clubs. Not hard. Brand new , second hand , left right , bells on and everything is within reach. Easy. Major sports retailers ,car boot sales (flea markets) and the internet set us up with the equipment we needed.

Now after this is where we became lost. How do you just go and play golf? Searching google with a simple" how to play golf " brought up a couple of websites of two local pay as you play courses.
We rocked up at one still with no idea what to expect. The establishment had signs detailing the policy , fees and etiquette needed to play. We were welcomed and had a chat , paid and went to join the queue at the first tee. 5 deep. Played like coco the clown with a rubber bat but played golf, real golf!!!!

We explored the second local pay as you play course and again, clear and concise information on your game. Played like coco again , but hey , two course experience! This golfing lark isn't as intimidating as first thought.
But......a long long buuuttttttt. These two courses were only 9 hole , 1600 yards total length efforts. But we played them for a good 6 months. They are busy , very busy and the owners are very friendly people. I so looked forward to playing every week. Summer , winter , rain , sun and whatever the none closed course could throw at us.

As our curiosity grew, and the knowledge base widened ,we started to look at proper courses. Big boy golf. 18 hole 7-9 thousand yard grown up golf.
And this was it. We hit a barrier. As before , look on the internet , ring a few courses. I was bombarded with rules, no go, and lists of a thousand items on why you couldn't play the course. I rang some courses and fobbed off for not being members, not knowing members, unable to prove handicap and Looking funny.... ok , maybe not that far, but you get the jist.

I booked by BRS at one club and the pro said to ring him direct next time as he can save us money. Played the round and was made to feel as uncomfortable as possible by other course users ( I parred a 578 yd hole that day so don't think that I was playing like coco again)  I hit a 5 on a 160 yard par 3 over some trees. It hit the green and rested 6 foot from the hole. I got to the green and upon putting for a birdie, spotted several people in the trees just stood watching me. And I didn't get the feeling it's because of my beautiful tee shot. I was new and being visually prodded with an optical pole.
So anyway , I rang the pro and booked a game a few weeks later. Firstly I was taken back why he asked me to in future book by BRS and not ring him. He asked my playing history and we told them about cutting our teeth on the pay as you play courses. The then launched into a tirade of what was clearly jealously by the amount of times the pro said "he must be raking it in" and "ten deep all the bloody time there". Then he attacked my top as it was the wrong shade of green. Played the round quickly and vowed never to return. Walked off the course being stared at like I'd drilled a hole in the 8th green and then made love to it.

So ok , that wasn't good. So I vowed to grit my teeth and carry on.

Returning to the friendly pay as you play , we soldiered on.

I want to play my local 18 hole, but unless I can decipher the enigma code in ten minutes, spin 423 plates on a cocktail stick and then solve 42 Rubix cubes in one minute. The rules state I can't play (not a clear sign, just a 42mb PDF on their website).

I found my current home of golf by an advert. They were running a special offer and they had slashed the price of membership and green fee's.
So we give it a whirl and now have played here for over several months. It's only a nine hole 3500 yarder, but they are really putting effort into investement of the course and golf itself. They have secured a grant and they offer free lessons to women and girls as this is the hardest hit area of golf they say. So I play the course and my mother in law and daughter (10) now happen to be having more PGA pro lessons and games than me.

So all In all , my personal opinion is that golf's stuffy days are over, any club clinging to this is on a downward trend. The shocking levels of bad customer service are rife , and blaming it on people not being bothered is not true. What is happening is some clubs are still pushing an elitist agenda.
In my experience, I see golf as a bottle of wine. People are trying to fill their glasses but have no clear way of getting that cork out (let's say it's a cheap plonk for contexts sake)
So that's my input. To make golf grow, accessibility has to grow. Ability tolerance, Personal standing and bad customer service has to drop.
Golf has to be clear ,concise and available to all. And every stuffy stuck up member of a golf club needs to remember they once was a learner.
But hey , that's my experience and I guess everyone's route into golf will be different. But it ties in with why there is a decline.
I could be wrong.







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#71 The Pearl

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:09 PM

The main problem is one of framing.   People often make the mistake that every industry/sector must be a "high growth" business.  The fact is that most American business's that have survived over multiple economic cycles are "mature, slow growth" industries.   Golf is a mature, slow growth industry, that happened to experience a one off "boom" during the Tiger era.  The bubble burst as all markets/industry do when they experience "hyper growth".  Fast growth is not sustainable.  The golfing industry and it's investors do what all human's do when they see hyper growth and easy dollar signs.  They assume the trend will continue to infinity and rush in to cash in.

The cycle blows up.   Fast growth collapses and the industry settles back to it's long term growth rate.   The golf industry yearns for high growth during the Tiger years, but it will never come again in a sustainable form, hence all the alarm bells generated almost entirely by the industry itself.  Regular golfer's don't care.  We want a decent course at a decent price and to get around in a reasonable time.  Hysterics is an easy sell.  Contraction scares everybody when their lively hood is at stake.  Excess has to always be wrung out of an industry.  Supply and demand must come in balance.  Sometimes this happens quickly, other times it happens over a long period of time.  Golf is trying to find that balance.  Courses must close and equipment companies must go extinct.

The life cycle of a golfer has not changed.  In general, you play as a kid, play as a young adult and than you get married and have kids.  You play infrequently until you kids are much, much older so that they don't require constant attention and you have built up a career that allows you some extra cash.   Eventually the kids are gone and you have tons of free time and the wife is off doing her thing.  You play more.  You eventually retire and play as much as possible.

It was believed not too long ago that Millennials would not buy houses.  Now they are. Why? Because most people's life follow the same arc.  It will be this way too with their obsession with technology.  As you age, you care less and less about those things.  They said the same thing about my generation with the TV.  Golf is a lifetime sport.  The young folks will eventually pick it up enough to keep golf in the slow growth mode that it always has been.  Most people won't be doing CrossFit and MMA fighting when they are 65.

Most of the complaints against the game are hollow and break down along geographical lines.  Most of the slow play and expensive complaints come from areas in the country with a high golfing population to golf course ratios.  These complaints fade away in the rest of the country where there is more of a balance.   With a little effort you can play courses in my area for about 22 bucks a round walking.  Most of the expense is added on with the use of a cart.  In general, I only see two types of golfer's walking, juniors and men 40 to 60 that try to get some exercise.  I see almost nobody walking that are between the ages of 23 and 35.   I rarely experience a round longer than 4 hrs.

In terms of equipment, there has never been a better time as a shopper to buy high quality used gear at a low price.  There has never been a better time to buy golf balls in terms of quality and price.  People will always be priced out of the game.  That is just reality.  If you want to golf, but can't afford it, you need to make more money, move to a different part of the country, or adjust your budget.  If none of these options are viable, than you can't play.  The game won't miss you.

The idiotic suggestions pushed by the golf industry won't have sustainability.  Big cups, 12 hole rounds, or any other variations of regular golf are gimmicks.  They need to address avid existing golfers first and go from there.  On balance, I think they are failing.   Very few industries are as poorly run as the golf industry.

Regardless it will survive in basically the same form that it always has..

Edited by The Pearl, 22 August 2017 - 06:14 PM.


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#72 new2g0lf

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 06:40 PM

Everything is cyclical, right now we're seeing a flat line and maybe a slight downturn but we're also seeing an increase of women in the sport and kids so there's strong hope for the future.  This also doesn't factor in what's going on in the rest of the world where golf seems to be gaining in popularity.

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#73 Andrew Bond of Glencoe

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 08:49 PM

There was a study 5 years ago that said that suburbs were all going to die because millenials want to live in the cities. A new study just released this year stated that millenials are starting to move out of the cities to raise families.

Not all millenials are the same- and it's the generation behind the millenials which could prove to be the reverse. Parents are putting their kids in more and more on-impact sports because of concussion studies.

One of the fastest groups of new golfers is Women.

Golf will be just fine.



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#74 MidMOGolfer

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 09:30 PM

Golf itself will never die.  What I see happening is you'll see less play on golf courses and more play on simulators similar to Top Golf, Trackman Range, or home simulators as the cost of launch monitors decline.
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#75 rawdog

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Posted 22 August 2017 - 09:40 PM

3 more threads on this subject ought to finally kill off golf.

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#76 d.m.gannon

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 01:49 AM

I do think that golf as a sport takes itself a little too seriously. For me there lies the problem, at the end of the day its a sport, we go there to try and have some fun. For me nothing more, there does appear to be an elitist attitude to it or too many rules or barriers to joining a club.

Here in sweden you have to do a two day course to get a card that allows you to play. Totally ridiculous in my opinion and not needed. Just a way to generate income really, golf is expensive enough.

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#77 Ferguson

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 01:19 PM

View Postgioguy21, on 22 August 2017 - 01:58 PM, said:

View PostFerguson, on 22 August 2017 - 01:56 PM, said:

View Postllewol007, on 22 August 2017 - 01:39 PM, said:

Its just going back to what is usually is, a game for those who have extra time and extra money. This day in age, people are making less money=less disposable income=working more=no time for golf. Add to that the attention span of millennials who would much rather play Pokeman Go than be on a golf course.


I think you meant to say discretionary income. That's the bucket from which we dip for golf.


Disposable Income is the amount leftover for spending and saving, after taxes.

Discretionary income is the amount leftover for spending, investments or saving after paying taxes and paying for personal necessities, such as food, shelter and clothing.  Discretionary income includes money spent on the non-essential things such as luxury items, services and vacations.
swap discretionary with disposable and his post still makes the same point.


No, simply swapping terms does not make the same point.   The post stated that golf is for those with extra time and extra money.  The post also stated that people are making less money and working more.   He also took a cheap shot at the millennials.

These are gross generalizations.

Here is my point: If people had a better understanding of personal money management (understanding the correct terminology is a good place to start), they would be able to budget for things like golf.

Items purchased with discretionary funds such as golf, entertainment, dining out and vacations can be worked into any budget when the person has a good foundational understanding of personal finance.

Also, if a person is working longer hours and making less – leave and do something else.
Don't blame it on the MAN.


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#78 gioguy21

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 01:22 PM

View PostFerguson, on 23 August 2017 - 01:19 PM, said:

View Postgioguy21, on 22 August 2017 - 01:58 PM, said:

View PostFerguson, on 22 August 2017 - 01:56 PM, said:

View Postllewol007, on 22 August 2017 - 01:39 PM, said:

Its just going back to what is usually is, a game for those who have extra time and extra money. This day in age, people are making less money=less disposable income=working more=no time for golf. Add to that the attention span of millennials who would much rather play Pokeman Go than be on a golf course.


I think you meant to say discretionary income. That's the bucket from which we dip for golf.


Disposable Income is the amount leftover for spending and saving, after taxes.

Discretionary income is the amount leftover for spending, investments or saving after paying taxes and paying for personal necessities, such as food, shelter and clothing.  Discretionary income includes money spent on the non-essential things such as luxury items, services and vacations.
swap discretionary with disposable and his post still makes the same point.


No, simply swapping terms does not make the same point.   The post stated that golf is for those with extra time and extra money.  The post also stated that people are making less money and working more.   He also took a cheap shot at the millennials.

These are gross generalizations.

Here is my point: If people had a better understanding of personal money management (understanding the correct terminology is a good place to start), they would be able to budget for things like golf.

Items purchased with discretionary funds such as golf, entertainment, dining out and vacations can be worked into any budget when the person has a good foundational understanding of personal finance.

Also, if a person is working longer hours and making less – leave and do something else.
Don't blame it on the MAN.


I have several millennials working for me – all good people.
  • 80% play golf
  • 100% do not play Pokemon

you're implying that people don't have an understanding of personal money management --- or that they actually WANT a budget to include things like golf.


is it possible that the reason that people aren't playing golf as plain and simple as...people don't actually care or want to play the game of golf?

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#79 Sun Devil

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 01:33 PM

View Postmelo, on 21 August 2017 - 02:39 PM, said:

Thank you all for your opinions and insights. I see a couple of trends in the posts...

Some people don't think golf is really declining, or at least nothing other than a typical ebb and flo     Typical ebb and flow.

Others of you think the cost of playing/equipment/etc is affecting play  this is ridiculous.  You can buy used equipment for dollars.  summer golf in Phx is cheap.  Lots of cheaper courses for those on a budget.

Some of you think courses will close  yes.  The independent courses not affiliated with large resorts will have problems

Do any of you think the following things are disrupting the market?

The length of time it takes to play (not whether it takes 4 hours or 4:30, I simply mean the fact that it takes anywhere over 2 hours to play) lay golf.No.  A lot of us play golf to spend time with our buddies.  I don't look at it taking 4 plus hours to play golf.  I look at it as 4 plus hours with my buddies and lunch and drinks afterwards.

The difficulty of learning and playing well   Again.  No.  I've learned quite a few things from reading, Youtube, etc. etc.

The cost of lessons/instruction and lack of access to quality practice facilities   Again.  No.  Youtube.   Free.  Reading magazines and advice from your buddies.  Free.  Or maybe a beer or two.

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#80 Ferguson

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:03 PM

View Postgioguy21, on 23 August 2017 - 01:22 PM, said:

View PostFerguson, on 23 August 2017 - 01:19 PM, said:

View Postgioguy21, on 22 August 2017 - 01:58 PM, said:

View PostFerguson, on 22 August 2017 - 01:56 PM, said:

View Postllewol007, on 22 August 2017 - 01:39 PM, said:

Its just going back to what is usually is, a game for those who have extra time and extra money. This day in age, people are making less money=less disposable income=working more=no time for golf. Add to that the attention span of millennials who would much rather play Pokeman Go than be on a golf course.


I think you meant to say discretionary income. That's the bucket from which we dip for golf.


Disposable Income is the amount leftover for spending and saving, after taxes.

Discretionary income is the amount leftover for spending, investments or saving after paying taxes and paying for personal necessities, such as food, shelter and clothing.  Discretionary income includes money spent on the non-essential things such as luxury items, services and vacations.
swap discretionary with disposable and his post still makes the same point.


No, simply swapping terms does not make the same point.   The post stated that golf is for those with extra time and extra money.  The post also stated that people are making less money and working more.   He also took a cheap shot at the millennials.

These are gross generalizations.

Here is my point: If people had a better understanding of personal money management (understanding the correct terminology is a good place to start), they would be able to budget for things like golf.

Items purchased with discretionary funds such as golf, entertainment, dining out and vacations can be worked into any budget when the person has a good foundational understanding of personal finance.

Also, if a person is working longer hours and making less – leave and do something else.
Don't blame it on the MAN.


I have several millennials working for me – all good people.
  • 80% play golf
  • 100% do not play Pokemon

you're implying that people don't have an understanding of personal money management --- or that they actually WANT a budget to include things like golf.


is it possible that the reason that people aren't playing golf as plain and simple as...people don't actually care or want to play the game of golf?


I stopped implying years ago when I got married.  

I was cogent and clear regarding the issue of people wanting to play golf but using “tagged” excuses that golf is too expensive, or out of reach.   By utilizing a combination of good financial budgeting and sensible buying habits, a person can play golf and have a blast.


As far as the people not caring or not wanting to play golf  I would state they don't really belong in this conversation.


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#81 gioguy21

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:10 PM

View PostFerguson, on 23 August 2017 - 02:03 PM, said:

I stopped implying years ago when I got married.  

I was cogent and clear regarding the issue of people wanting to play golf but using “tagged” excuses that golf is too expensive, or out of reach.   By utilizing a combination of good financial budgeting and sensible buying habits, a person can play golf and have a blast.

As far as the people not caring or not wanting to play golf  I would state they don't really belong in this conversation.

they are not excuses but rather reasonable arguments for not playing the game of golf. regardless of good financial budgeting, sensible buying habits or anything else -- for some people it simply IS too expensive.

now, expensive may not mean that it's financially too much and that they cannot afford it -- but it's quite possible that the expense of it (while fiscally able to do so) does not outweigh other things in their lives that they would much rather do, hereby leading to my point that quite frankly -- they just might not want to play.

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#82 Ferguson

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:24 PM

View Postgioguy21, on 23 August 2017 - 02:10 PM, said:

View PostFerguson, on 23 August 2017 - 02:03 PM, said:

I stopped implying years ago when I got married.  

I was cogent and clear regarding the issue of people wanting to play golf but using “tagged” excuses that golf is too expensive, or out of reach.   By utilizing a combination of good financial budgeting and sensible buying habits, a person can play golf and have a blast.

As far as the people not caring or not wanting to play golf  I would state they don't really belong in this conversation.

they are not excuses but rather reasonable arguments for not playing the game of golf. regardless of good financial budgeting, sensible buying habits or anything else -- for some people it simply IS too expensive.

now, expensive may not mean that it's financially too much and that they cannot afford it -- but it's quite possible that the expense of it (while fiscally able to do so) does not outweigh other things in their lives that they would much rather do, hereby leading to my point that quite frankly -- they just might not want to play.


I see no reason to introduce an irrelevant subset of people (those who do not want to play golf) into a conversation about golf.


The decline of new people to the game is rooted in cost.  It's an expensive and difficult sport.

If they stop buying those $6 fancy coffees, that's $42 per week for golf.
If they stop eating out two nights a week, that's an extra $50 per week for golf.

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#83 gioguy21

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:31 PM

View PostFerguson, on 23 August 2017 - 02:24 PM, said:

View Postgioguy21, on 23 August 2017 - 02:10 PM, said:

View PostFerguson, on 23 August 2017 - 02:03 PM, said:

I stopped implying years ago when I got married.  

I was cogent and clear regarding the issue of people wanting to play golf but using “tagged” excuses that golf is too expensive, or out of reach.   By utilizing a combination of good financial budgeting and sensible buying habits, a person can play golf and have a blast.

As far as the people not caring or not wanting to play golf  I would state they don't really belong in this conversation.

they are not excuses but rather reasonable arguments for not playing the game of golf. regardless of good financial budgeting, sensible buying habits or anything else -- for some people it simply IS too expensive.

now, expensive may not mean that it's financially too much and that they cannot afford it -- but it's quite possible that the expense of it (while fiscally able to do so) does not outweigh other things in their lives that they would much rather do, hereby leading to my point that quite frankly -- they just might not want to play.


I see no reason to introduce an irrelevant subset of people (those who do not want to play golf) into a conversation about golf.


The decline of new people to the game is rooted in cost.  It's an expensive and difficult sport.

If they stop buying those $6 fancy coffees, that's $42 per week for golf.
If they stop eating out two nights a week, that's an extra $50 per week for golf.

lol did you even read what i wrote? i'm not talking about the capacity of a person to have enough money to spend on golf. i'm talking about the personal decision to play golf or as you so put it, have 'fancy coffees' or eat out two nights as week --- those options mean more to them.

again, people who don't WANT to play golf due to the personal tradeoff of playing golf vs. other options.

Edited by gioguy21, 23 August 2017 - 02:39 PM.

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#84 Ferguson

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:43 PM

Versus what other options   - Urban Golf, Frisbee Golf?


Read the following, please.   It captures the essence of what "I think" the OP was getting at.  


https://www.washingt...m=.7fbd4f113179



………..It's been years since the increasingly unpopular sport of golf plunked into the rough, and the industry now is realizing that it may not be able to ever get out. All the qualities that once made it so elite and exclusive are, analysts say, now playing against it.  The game -- with its drivers, clubs, shoes and tee times -- is expensive both to prepare for and to play.  It's difficult, dissuading amateurs from giving it a swing, and time-consuming, limiting how much fans can play.   Even Jack Nicklaus, perhaps the greatest golfer in history, makes a strong argument for why new players aren't flocking to golf.  Nicklaus told CNN in January. "I'd quite like to play a game that I can get some reasonable gratification out of very quickly -- and something that is not going to cost me an arm and a leg."

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#85 gioguy21

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 02:56 PM

View PostFerguson, on 23 August 2017 - 02:43 PM, said:

Versus what other options   - Urban Golf, Frisbee Golf?


Read the following, please.   It captures the essence of what "I think" the OP was getting at.  


https://www.washingt...m=.7fbd4f113179



………..It's been years since the increasingly unpopular sport of golf plunked into the rough, and the industry now is realizing that it may not be able to ever get out. All the qualities that once made it so elite and exclusive are, analysts say, now playing against it.  The game -- with its drivers, clubs, shoes and tee times -- is expensive both to prepare for and to play.  It's difficult, dissuading amateurs from giving it a swing, and time-consuming, limiting how much fans can play.   Even Jack Nicklaus, perhaps the greatest golfer in history, makes a strong argument for why new players aren't flocking to golf.  Nicklaus told CNN in January. "I'd quite like to play a game that I can get some reasonable gratification out of very quickly -- and something that is not going to cost me an arm and a leg."

sigh. options meaning ANY other thing in their life they might place value on, more than golf.

think of it this way (really simple):

a man has $100, a free afternoon, his wife and son have no plans. round of golf down the street will cost $50, and 4 hours of his time.


he has many choices -- he can play golf (obviously he can afford it), he can throw the ball with his son, take his wife/son to a matinee, go for a walk in the park with his family...(you get the point, the options are virtually endless).

his WANT for golf has to be greater than any other of his options, regardless of cost.



you and i both know that it costs a decent amount of money to get into golf -- as the article so clearly states. but it also takes a willingness/desire to play the game that overcomes the opportunity cost of playing the game of golf versus other things.

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#86 wombat_vortex

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 04:15 PM

I think the turning point for me is readily approaching.  Golf keeps getting more and more expensive, but the conditions of the courses keep getting worse and worse.  I live in California and after this bad drought we just had, many courses seem to be gun shy about really pumping a lot of water onto their courses.  It's a bad cycle to get into and hard to pull out of, without courses willing to spend a lot of money up front in hopes of pulling in more business.

I don't mind a round taking 4-5 hours of out my day, but it's the waiting in between every single shot that drives me nuts.

It's an ebb and flow situation, which has been mentioned before many times in this topic.  But as business goes, especially in this day and age, anything that doesn't keep getting larger and larger each year is considered stagnant.

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#87 Sean2

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 04:18 PM

The first tee is quite active in our area, and the summer clinics at my practice facility are very busy with all the kids that attend.
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#88 EKELLY

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 05:02 PM

Depends on where you live, and the type of courses you play. When old school private clubs are semi-private now, there's a problem. When private clubs, like mine, are advertising for members (they never did before), there's a problem. When courses are closing , or for sale, there's a problem. When club sales are down (ask TM for 3 straight years), there may be a problem. Nike quits making equipment, Taylor Made isn't really profitable enough (thus, the sale) and Titleist is hanging on by a thread.......But no, nobody sees golf slowing down because they don't realize that when the course is almost empty, that's a BAD thing!!.....If my club closes, there's another 7 minutes down the road!.....I'm good!!......LOL

Edited by EKELLY, 23 August 2017 - 05:03 PM.


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#89 uitar9

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 07:27 PM

View PostHawkeyeHacker, on 21 August 2017 - 11:44 AM, said:

Golf's been around for hundreds of years.  Millennials (which I am) won't kill it.  They'll play more as they get older.  Since millennials are the largest generation maybe golf will be bigger than ever when as this generation comes of age.

Agreed. Probably gonna effect many industries as this pig moves through the python. Hopefully, the golf will be on a real course endnote online,

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#90 hahanice

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Posted 23 August 2017 - 08:21 PM

Now that my friends are hitting their 30s they are all starting to pick it up. Even the ones that never played much growing up.

These are private school kids who went to Ivy's or top 10 public universities. They have the money to spend, and are starting to want to play golf on their free time.

The reason I bring this up is that watching them makes me agree that golf is probably too hard and expensive.

They will never truly improve without time to practice. Playing twice a month isn't really enough. I play A LOT and I'm still not great. I try to give them tips but it takes practice.

They also just don't want to blow that much money on golf. A round on a Saturday is 60 to 80$. We all play in a basketball league that costs 80$ for the season.
They need gear, but even these guys don't want to shell out for even used gear. I'd imagine a used set should cost 400 if you shop frugally.

These are the guys who can afford it, but are smarter with their money than I am.


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