Look for a story on The Players Course at Tierra Rejada GC, a 5,500-yard layout that fits in well with the USGA and PGA's Tee It Forward initiative, in the next issue of FORE Magazine, which will be available early next month.
By The PGA Of America
Consumers provided extremely positive feedback from their experiences in the first year of TEE IT FORWARD, the national initiative supported by The PGA of America (PGA) and the United States Golf Association (USGA). TEE IT FORWARD, which was formally conducted at facilities nationwide from July 5-17, encourages golfers to play faster and have more fun by playing from tees best suited to their ability.
Initial responses from a consumer survey indicated that 70 percent of the respondents found golf more enjoyable; 90 percent said they played faster or at about the same pace; 91 percent were likely to recommend TEE IT FORWARD to a friend and would likely use it again; and 52 percent stated they were likely to play golf more often knowing they could use TEE IT FORWARD.
A separate PGA survey found that 1,923 facilities were officially registered or reported results for the TEE IT FORWARD promotion. An average of 123 golfers per facility used the guidelines and approximately 237,000 total golfers used TEE IT FORWARD during the promotion period. The survey found that 86 percent of the facilities were likely to continue promoting TEE IT FORWARD throughout the year.
“We are extremely pleased with the initial results from golfers using TEE IT FORWARD,” said PGA of America President Allen Wronowski. “Golfers told us that they had a positive experience. It was our hope that by moving to a different set of tees, golfers would have a more enjoyable, relaxing and fun experience – that certainly appears to be the case.”
TEE IT FORWARD was launched in May during the 72nd Senior PGA Championship. It was further promoted by the USGA during the U.S. Open Championship in June and the U.S. Women’s Open Championship in July.
“The emphasis here is on playing faster and having more fun, with the hope that people will want to play more,” said USGA President Jim Hyler. “We see this initiative continuing on well into the future. I’m a prime example of someone who was focused on playing a 6,600- or 6,700‑yard golf course. Once I moved up to about 6,200 yards, I said, ‘Wow, this makes a difference. It’s more fun.’”
A few of the anecdotal results from people using TEE IT FORWARD include a female golfer recording her first hole-in-one and an 85-year-old woman cutting 30 minutes off her round and breaking 100 for the first time in years.
Barney Adams, the founder of Adams Golf, provided the concept that led to TEE IT FORWARD. By playing from forward tees, amateur golfers have the chance to play the course at the same relative distance as a touring professional would over 18 holes. Thus, the playing field is leveled by giving golfers an opportunity to play from distances that are properly aligned with their abilities.
The PGA and USGA provided more than 11,000 facilities around the country with TEE IT FORWARD information and promotion materials. While the first year of the initiative had specific dates in July, golfers are encouraged to TEE IT FORWARD at any time on any golf course.
To see a chart that provides guidelines for aligning a player's driving distance with total course length, please visit PlayGolfAmerica.com/TEEITFORWARD.