How to Become a Golf Instructor
For many, becoming a golf teacher or certified golf instructor is a logical way to begin or continue a career in golf; however, when it comes to figuring out how to become a certified golf instructor, most prospective golf teachers don’t have a clue where to begin.
Since we have a few on hand, team GLT Golf decided to pick the brains of two of our own certified golf instructors and see what advice they might have for those with an interest in becoming golf teachers.
According to GLT Director Matthew Cooke, the most important step those aiming to make a living as a golf teacher can take is to join the local PGA and complete the PGA certified golf instructor training program. This process takes years, but it’s importance in answering the “how to become a golf instructor” dilemma can’t be overstated.
“Joining the PGA gives you the opportunity to earn the credentials necessary to teach golf at most of the world’s best golf clubs and courses,” advised Cooke. “While it’s not always a requirement, when advertising golf teacher positions, most places seek a PGA certified golf instructor.”
"Becasue I am so passionate about this subject 'How to become a golf instructor', I managed to get on a call and record a Podcast with Mr David Colclough (Head of Golf Coaching & Sport Science), and we discussed what golf instructors are being taught at the PGA (Professional Golfers Association) of Great Britain & Ireland. You can listen here
Cooke advises those interested in pursing a golf coaching career to find a certified golf instructor that is willing to let you assist and/or shadow to gain hands-on experience.
Lastly, Cooke recommends learning as much as you can about people and how people learn. “Golf is a motor skill, so motor learning should be paramount for anyone wishing to be a better golf teacher,” stated Cooke.
GLT’s Director of Education, Iain Highfield, also had plenty of advice for prospective golf teachers. “If you wish to become a certified golf instructor, you must find your passion within some aspect of golf coaching,” Highfield remarked. “If you’re passionate about what you’re doing and what you’re teaching, it’s going to come through, you’re going to be more effective, and it’s going to be an all-around more pleasurable experience for everyone.”
Highfield’s final recommendation for how to become a golf instructor is to work in a team in order to connect with students as thoroughly as possible. “By working in a team, golf coaches are able to share resources, and by doing so, can share best practices across multiple different areas,” suggested Highfield. “If your strengths are in one area of the game, and your partners’ strengths are in other areas, you’re going to be able to be more complete in your advice, and, putting it bluntly, you’re going to be a better golf teacher.”
To hear GLT's Matthew Cooke discus what golf instructors are being taught with David Colclaugh, head of Coaching & Sports Science for the PGA of Great Britain & Ireland, check out a podcast from the GLT archives.