Rory McIlroy has an innovative way to get kids into golf

Martyn Clapham
By Martyn Clapham June 25, 2015 12:09

World number one golfer Rory McIlory has said that more children will play golf if the world’s best golfers have more athletic bodies.

Throughout Europe and the USA the challenge of getting children to play golf has proven to be tough, with many countries reporting that less than 10 percent of their golf clubs’ members are juniors.

Initiatives devised to get more children to play the game have included links between golf clubs and schools in which professionals teach the game to pupils, alternative versions of golf that make the sport easier and more fun and policies that make playing golf at clubs affordable for children.

However McIlroy, who recently announced that he has added 20 pounds of muscle to his body and reduced his body fat percentage from 24 to 10, since working out 90 minutes a day, five days a week from 2010, said that the image of professional golfers is what will inspire children to take up the game.

“I think golf has progressed, it has become more of an athletic sport,” he said.

“When you look at some of the moves guys make at the ball, you need to be strong in certain areas. You don’t need to be built like a linebacker but you need to have stability and strength in certain areas in your body.

“If more golfers look athletic, it portrays a much better image for the game.

“That encourages kids to maybe pick up the sport or pick up a club and maybe it encourages parents to get them into golfing as well. Because maybe 15 to 20 years ago the image of golf wasn’t athletic, it wasn’t the way it is now and Tiger has changed that. If you look at some of the younger guys, the look is much different. I think that is a great thing for golf.”

Not everyone agrees though. Legendary coach Butch Harmon said he is concerned about how much work McIlroy is doing in the gym.

“The only caution I would give Rory is, I see a lot of pictures of him lifting a lot of very heavy weights and I think, in a way, you can almost hurt yourself in the gym if you get too bulky,” he said.

“Hopefully, he will keep his body tone down, more like a Dustin Johnson, who’s in absolutely perfect physical shape to play golf.”


Martyn Clapham
By Martyn Clapham June 25, 2015 12:09
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  1. ronald ross July 15, 11:31

    “When the golfer thinks of hitting, the idea of strength comes into his mind, and the flick of the wrists may be forgotten. Of golf theories there is no end. But I lay it down as the simplest and surest, whether you be built on the gigantic lines of that great driver Edward Ray, or on the slight lines of an artist like James Sherlock, that golf asks for no more than normal physical suppleness and loyalty to the principles of the game” Sandy Herd, 1923

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  2. Bob Braban June 30, 08:53

    Rory should stick to what he’s best at. Playing Golf! So golf should attract kids by improved athleticism? Right, that’s added a few more, but there is absolutely no chance of reviving junior entry into golf until it is put back into the public domain. It is well worth repeating over and over again, that until restriction to the minority Sky TV coverage is discontinued, there will be no improvement. Restriction to homes that can justify the high charges for Sky TV is restoring golf’s unwelcome image that it took years to shake off. viz. That it is a minority sport for wealthy people. Golf does not need that image, but sadly, good public exposure is the only way to stop it from returning as the way the population views and speaks about golf. A lot of people worked for a long time with considerable success to make golf more a game for the people and the authorities who should be working for the long term future of the game are destroying that good work at twice the speed. They should move their headquarters to Brussels with the rest of the crackpots!

    Bob Braban

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  3. Richard June 25, 15:34

    So Colin Montgomerie and Craig Stadler, the “Walrus”, are by inference partly responsible for falling memberships!

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