Although many used to think about golf as an outdated man’s sport, the sport’s picture has been shifting of late and is now being performed by a wider and extra numerous group of individuals than ever earlier than. Serving to to deliver the sport to increasingly individuals is the Pink River Valley’s personal Cathy Harbin, who for roughly the previous yr and a half has been serving as a member of the PGA of America Board of Administrators.
“I like the sport and the way in which it enhances individuals’s lives,” Harbin mentioned. “It teaches common sense, perseverance and downside
On the board, Harbin heads up the grownup participant improvement committee. Because the title suggests, the committee goals to create a supportive setting for adults simply starting to get into the sport of golf.
“A number of focus is placed on bringing in youthful individuals and children, however there isn’t at all times numerous emphasis on getting individuals into golf later in life,” Harbin mentioned. “A number of occasions, individuals really feel intimidated by the sport at first, and that is all about ensuring that doesn’t occur.”
One of many methods Harbin is doing that features a program began up by the committee known as “Play with a Professional,” the place new golfers can exit on the inexperienced alongside a PGA professional skilled at their golf membership, who can then give the brand new golfers suggestions and pointers.
Harbin additionally chairs the Place to Play committee, which is equally designed to create entries into the sport and make the game extra accessible.
“That committee is all about making a secure setting at programs,” Harbin mentioned.
One of many first efforts to committee made in direction of that objective was lately taken once they dedicated $250,000 to programs in Tulsa, Oklahoma, to make them simpler for brand spanking new golfers. Changes made by programs in Tulsa included eradicating some bushes and different obstacles and making sure holes extra approachable.
One other effort taken by the committee that Harbin is very pleased with is the Metropolis Swing program.
Launched within the Washington, D.C., space, this system brings golf instructors to individuals in city areas the place there won’t be easy accessibility to a golf course, and the trainer gives classes on a smaller, cell course.
Although that program is simply localized to D.C. for the time being, Harbin mentioned they hope to quickly make it a nationwide initiative.
Of the roughly 28,000 PGA professionals, solely 4% are girls. Of the smaller group of grasp professionals, a good smaller share are girls. Harbin is proud to be each, and one of many very first girls to earn the title of grasp skilled within the nation.
She brings that power to the board, saying that she gives a recent and totally different perspective that’s at all times appreciated.
“The individuals on the board are nice,” she mentioned. “We’ve open and frank discussions, and even once we don’t at all times agree, they respect having a distinct set of eyes on a difficulty, and I really feel like I’ve been capable of make some actual optimistic modifications with my life experiences.”