At Briar Leaf Golf Club, lessons are available for players of all levels, whether they have played hundreds of rounds throughout their lives or have never even picked up a golf club before.
“If you play better, it’s just more fun,” said Jay Williams, head golf professional at Briar Leaf and a member of the Professional Golfers’ Association.
Williams said players come to him with a variety of needs. Some only want one lesson to fix a certain issue they are experiencing, while others are searching for plans that combine private sessions with time practicing on their own for a better game overall.
As players begin to take more lessons, Williams is able to build new skills with his students and help them achieve goals personalized to their needs.
“I try to have a working relationship with each person,” he said.
Jenny Brown, Ideas in Motion Media’s Vice President of Sales, falls into the beginner category. Although Brown said she has played sports such as tennis, volleyball and soccer, she has never played golf.
As she and Williams began to talk about the lesson she took Tuesday afternoon, she connected to learning a new sport to her recent experience learning ballroom dance with “Dancing Like a Star.”
Both require her to learn basic skills that she can then build off to get better, she said.
Brown and Williams worked together at the driving range to start with the simplest: making contact with the ball. After each swing, Williams would give her more tips, such as keeping her upper body in one place throughout the entire swing and making sure to stand with her feet shoulder-width apart.
Even with lessons, Williams said it is important for players to practice as often as they can so they don’t begin to rely too much on a coach. When that happens, they sometimes don’t realize what they truly need to be working on in their private sessions.
“Playing won’t make you worse,” Williams said.
A single lesson costs only $55, a group of four costs $195, and a 10-lesson “game improvement” package costs $425. Junior lessons are $30. Women can sign up for group clinics that are only $50 for three nights, and a two-night putting session is only $40.
“If you’re willing to spend a few bucks, you can do so affordably and make a concerted effort to improving your golf game,” Williams added.