You know what I mean – your player needs to arrive approximately 60 minutes before their tee time to warm up. How do you spend this time? What do you call it? The calm before the storm
THERE ARE MANY DIFFERENT APPROACHES…….
Over the years I have seen junior golf parents approach this time in several different ways – here are the 7 most common.
- Grind on the Range – this is probably my least favorite, but is sadly quite popular. The parents go the range with their player. They watch shots, talk about mishits, and provide swing tips. If at all possible, I would avoid this approach. You go to the driving range prior to a tournament round to get loose, not learn a new swing. The last thing you player needs is to get upset right before they tee off. Give them space – let them talk to other players. If they ask you for advice in the final hour before tee off, keep it simple. My favorite is – keep a smooth rhythm – pretty simple and will help almost any player.
- Find a Nice Spot for Coffee – one of my personal favorites – let your player warmup while you find a nice spot to relax with a cup of joe. You don’t need to watch them on the driving range or putting green. Trust me, they know how to handle themselves. Watching your child play golf is stressful – take this less hour to find internal peace.
Spend the Hour before Tee Time to relax with coffee – you can always find a beautiful view on the golf course!
3. Take Care of Last Minute Issues – going to be gentle with this one, but if you have ever visited the restroom prior to a junior event you know it can be a crowded place. Be prepared, there might be a line.
4. Wrap-up Work – hopefully you won’t have to take any work calls once the tournament round starts – use this last hour before tee time to take care of any fires back at your job. Free your schedule for the next 4-5 hours so you can enjoy watching your child play.
5. Catch Up With Other Junior Golf Parents – one of the coolest things about junior golf tournaments is the people your meet. You can catch up with parents about college golf recruiting and create quite the social network based on people you meet on the junior golf trail and young golfers.
6. Pack Your Cooler – as you know, junior golf parents are basically Sherpas – primary job is to carry drinks, snacks, and help find golf balls. Use your last hour to make sure you have everything your young player might need. Get drinks, find some ice, and pack away from snacks.
7. Learn the Course – if we haven’t visited the course before, I will sometimes use my last hour to do a little research to learn parts of a golf course. Simple things. Where is the first tee? Where is the 10th tee? Find a scorecard and checkout the layout. Basically, just stuff to keep me engaged.
WHAT TYPE OF JUNIOR GOLF PARENT ARE YOU?
How do you spend that precious hour prior to tee time or your offseasons? Do you have a process that I didn’t mention?
Be honest, are you a “Range Grinder”? The first step is admitting it! If so, try giving your player some space instead – let them warmup on their own. You might enjoy it more!
About the author
Mike Harris is a former college golfer and dedicated father of two talented junior golfers. With a passion for the sport that began in his own childhood, Mike now focuses on helping his children, Avery and Olivia, navigate the world of junior golf. He’s eager to share tips, advice, and insights with other families on their own golf journeys. Join Mike as he tees off into the exciting realm of junior golf, providing guidance to parents and kids alike.