Growing The Game At Al Hamra Golf Club
Al Hamra Golf Club in Ras Al Khaimah has joined forces with the Emirates Golf Federation to make golf accessible to female junior golfers. We spoke to Damien Scott, Teaching Professional at Al Hamra Golf Club to find out about the initiative, get his take on what parents can do to support their child’s journey into golf and find out about his own golf experiences.
Tell us about the girl’s introduction to golf program?
This is a great collaboration between Emirates Golf federation and Al Hamra Golf Club to provide an opportunity to local schools where the girls can come and try Golf for the first time. The program itself is 8 weeks and its main aim is to grow the game by focusing on the fundamental skills needed to play golf.
Why is this program important?
Golf is a game that can be for everyone, from all walks of life and I feel it’s important that everyone should try it! As an individual sport it can promote independence, it can contribute to an active and healthy lifestyle and obviously growing the game in the region is important for its future.
Tell us a bit about the Golf Academy at Al Hamra Golf Club.
The golf Academy has like most a men’s ladies and junior section. We have partnerships with other schools and our own classes for juniors. Tiger cubs allows kids from ages 5-9 to participate while older kids (8-16) can attend the Young Master’s program.
What are you doing to #GrowTheGame and what is key to getting more juniors to try the sport?
This year I have visited 4 schools and introduced the game to approx. 350 kids. ½ of these kids didn’t know what golf was. That’s the first step introducing the game and then by making the game accessible and affordable with school partnerships I believe this is a big step in growing the game.
Within the academy I have fun with the juniors while they improve and that keeps the retention high for each season
3 Tips for Parents who want to introduce their children golf.
Over the years I have played my fair share of sport and golf is up there with one of the most difficult,
- Be patient, some kids need more time than others.
- Don’t be too structured, let them do it their way.
- Encourage them, your job is to support them.
Tell us a bit about your own golf journey.
From a game of pitch and putt with some friends at aged 20 I became a member a of Cavan GC within the following month where I received a handicap of 14. Golf came to the top of my long list of sports which I played. A year later I moved to London for a sports degree and golf took a back step until I met PGA pro Gary Clements 8 years later. Under his guidance my handicap fell to 4 within the year and the decision was made that I would apply to join the PGA. I moved back to Cavan where I started my training with PGA professional Gavin Byrne in Farnham Estate before completing it with Neil McNulty. Following Covid 19 I moved to Al Hamra as Head PGA professional to coach full time at the end of 2021.
Golf has given me so much and it’s a journey I have loved and no doubt will continue to do so!
Tell us your most memorable golf experience.
Winning my first event as a Professional at Balcarrick Golf Club Pro-am last year
Who is your golf role model/idol?
Who would your ideal foursome include?
Padraig Harrington, Shane Lowry, Leona Maguire & myself. Gary Clements narrowly misses the cut!