Junior Golf: No Pass No Play

imageIn this Monday Mulligan we will examine the value of time management for your son. Life skills are critical for junior golfers and being able to make good grades is equally or even more important than playing good golf.

No pass no play is a fact of life for young amateur athletes here in the US. What it means basically, is that your son must have a minimum number of school classes he is making at least a “C” average or equivalent in. For college it means a minimum number of hours with at least a “C” average. If your son does not meet these minimums, he is not eligible to play in competition for his school during the current grading period or until he gets his grades back up. Now this is bad enough in high school and junior high and it is embarrassing for your son and his coach will not be happy. Redemption comes as soon as his grades are where they need to be and that can be as early as the next time interim or semester grades are released. The good news is that in many institutions grades are updated every 6 weeks, so you son may not have to sit out the whole semester. (photo jennleforge.com)

In college being scholastically ineligible is much more serious since your son is being paid, via his scholarship, to play golf for his school. So poor grades mean missing tournaments and a possible reduction in his scholarship amount for the next year. Most coaches will accept, but not be happy about 1 set of poor grades, but if it happens a 2nd time your son has shown that he has some issues and perhaps cannot be counted on for competition.

Folks, the college coaches don’t have time for this. They have kids standing in line wanting to be on their golf team and they turn down plenty of junior golfers for poor grades and not just high school gpa’s, but SAT scores as well.

So Dad & Mom what do you do? In our house grades have always come first, before golf. S3 was taught that he had to learn how to manage his time so he could get his studying and homework done on time and then he could focus on golf. Of course usually the day’s structure is athletics are done first and then schoolwork is done at home. The bottom line is the same, grades then golf as priorities in life at least through college. The time management skills your son learns will benefit him the rest of his life.image

So help your son schedule and structure his weeks and make sure he sticks to it. This may take some time to settle in, it is usually 3 weeks to ingrain a new habit, but it will be worth it. Your son doesn’t need to be Einstein, but he does need to believe and expect that he can make good grades. And making the minimum grades to be eligible to play in high school are likely not going to be high enough to get him into many, if any, colleges. Encourage him to go for the best grades, not just the minimum requirements. (photo quotehd.com)

See you on #1 tee looking smart… Sam

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