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The path is there, you just need to walk it!
Start Of The Race :- Starting with the basics of golf moving up through the ranks people are hooked on golf. So much they think that they want to earn a living from the game. I myself are on the path to doing so like so many others who want to know what route to go down.
As an amateur you know you can play in tournaments with an amateur status and compete at a very high level (Gary Wolstenholme) whereas others want to make it into the professional status bracket. But where to start?...
Basically do your research on the tournaments in your country that are highly looked upon, try enter them and get competing in such events, this will get your name noticed if you are up there within the top10 much more so in the top5 (ideally needed). Then once you are playing in a very competitive field you get the experience to move on. From then on you can enter professional events under your amateur status which at the end has a cash prize fund. If you come somewhere near the top or even better win the event you will be offered the prize of say $12,000. From there you can choose whether you want to sacrifice your amateur status to accept being a professional (earning money out of the game of golf). The thing is that then restricts you to Pro only events and all the top quality tournaments that are open for amateurs are now closed doors for you which really could be a good learning curve until you are 100% ready and sure you can compete at the highest of levels.
Furthermore there is also the option of going to Q school which is a very very and I mean very, hard place to earn your card. This is a 3 stage process that a set number of players earn their card. At each stage, only so many make the cut and make the final few. In the last stage of Q-School the competition is fierce and the top set amount (not too sure exactly how many) will earn their Tour Card. If you can compete at this level you will rise quickly on tour as the standard is as close to Tour golf as it gets.
On the other hand there is the option of entering mini-tours such as the hooters tour or such tours of a more minor status. On these tours, be it the euro-pro or another one that you have researched; there is the chance of you winning 3 events in a year and this earning you your card; also think you need prize money of 300k. It is advisable that you research what tours you could compete on and which ones are better training grounds for different outcomes. Such mini-tours I have found through research have a winning score of -20 whereas other tours may be -4 which are played on really scoring courses.
Plan before jumping into things! -
Here is an idea of a plan that you could make or goals to achieve over a period of time, REMEMBER this is not an overnight process. Canadian Tour -> Nationwide Tour -> PGA Tour. This is a realistic goal that you can work towards over say a 5 year period, so give yourself some time for preparation to qualify for your first tour such as the Canadian which realistically could be 6 months to get your game sharp. Don’t forget golf is just not hitting a ball. Fitness, Health and Mentality all come into it, so make sure the coach you have is good enough and if you don’t think so the right coach will find you and have a personal trainer or a conditioning coach that will get you physically and mentally into a healthy state ready to play competitive sport.
Also, don’t forget that Golf to these guys is a full time job so 40+ hours at golf a week is very tiring. So if you get bored after a day of 6 hours and maybe struggling with what you are working on DO NOT QUIT. A famous saying that I carry on my bag of Jack Nicklaus’ is “Resolve Never To Quit, Never To Give Up, No Matter What The Situation”. When I personally am having a bad round I look at this and knuckle down and just get on with it.
That is just a few points to think about when wanting to go the route or thinking of playing Golf for a Living... Just remember “Work On The Range Play On The Course”
More to Come
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