Every summer, parents across the country begin to sweat and stress. Sure, the weather’s great and we can go on vacation, but what should I do with junior each day? While you can sign them up for music lessons, send them off to their grandparents, or have them do housework, a fun-filled option that’s sure to pique their interest is golf camp.
As one of the most difficult games on the planet, instruction and fundamentals are core to developing an interest and love of the game. So if you want to turn your kid into a solid junior golfer — or even a PGA Tour hopeful — brush up on some of the best golf camps for kids.
Golf camp is a versatile option for children. You have plenty of options for your budget and schedule, and you can also choose a camp based on the interest level of your child. From day camps to summer-long academies and fees as low as about $100, you can get into the full swing of summer with the best golf camp for kids — whatever that may be.
Established in 2011, PGA Junior Golf Camps — also known as the PGA Junior Golf League — has over 60,000 participants nationwide. Part camp and part golf scramble tournament, this camp teaches campers everything from how to hold the golf club to introductory golf course management. The league also offers campers golf instruction from PGA-certified golf instructors in a fun, exciting, and all-inclusive format.
PGA Junior Golf Camps are open to golfers 17 and under. Prices are around $300, including a $99 PGA Junior Golf annual membership — which allows kids access to other leagues and tournaments outside of the camp.
Based in Pinehurst, North Carolina, and home to one of the top golf resorts in America, U.S. Kids Golf is a nationwide company that offers week-long and full-day summer golf camps, as well as over 1,600 tournaments around the country for children to join. Each golf coach has received a Level 2 certification and ensures that each camp experience has plenty of helpful golf lessons for all skill levels.
Initially started as a golf club fitting company for children, U.S. Kids Golf is famous for teaching its students the “Player Pathway” golf program. Through recognition, encouragement, and learning, young golfers embrace putting, chipping, driving, scoring, and basic golf knowledge in an entertaining setting — making it one of the best golf camps for kids.
Camps are available around the country and are open to children ages 5 to 14. Prices vary by location but are usually around $300 to $400.
LPGA-USGA Girls Golf Camps enable young girls to embrace the traditionally male-dominated sport in a female-friendly setting. Started in 1989 by a former LPGA golfing professional, the camp has over 80,000 attendees annually in 500 different communities from Florida to California.
In this girls-only format, female golfers are in a safe space and more likely to absorb information over the course of the camp.
This camp is available to girls 6 to 17 — enabling youngsters and high school students to enjoy the instruction. Fees vary by location.
TGA (Tennis-Golf Athletics) Premiere Sports is a sports camp franchise that uses a five-step system to guide kids on their course to golf mastery. Boasting a low camper-to-coach ratio, expert instruction, and on-the-course training, this option is often mentioned as one of the best golf camps for kids.
On top of camps, TGA Premiere also has leagues, clinics, play days, family events, private lessons, and more. Prices and locations vary.
If your child loves the game of golf enough to consider college golf or golf scholarships, Mike Bender Golf Academy offers world-class instruction for kids up to 18 years old. Located just outside Orlando in Lake Mary, Florida, the academy has golf camps year-round, including full-day sessions and onsite housing.
With a staff that includes two Top 100 teachers, experts in club fitting and fitness, and sports psychologists, the camp has everything a player needs to turn the sport into a college-level scholarship — earning it the reputation as the absolute best golf camp for kids.
Prices start at $1,750 for a single week and up to $8,500 for a full month (including accommodation and food).
Founded in 1978, the American Junior Golf Association (AJGA) is a nonprofit organization “dedicated to the overall growth and development of young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf.”
The organization has around 7,300 members and around 10% of them go on to play in the college ranks. With camps to help younger golfers learn how to do things correctly and thousands of tournaments yearly, the AJGA is a great place for young kids to hone their game.
Started in Pebble Beach — home to one of the most expensive courses in the world — Youth on Course gives back to the community by offering low-cost golf camps to youth nationwide. Each year, over 140,000 golfers participate in Youth on Course programs with instruction and greens fees as low as $5 a player.
Golf is an intimidating sport to many people — kids and adults alike. Seeing the need to alleviate this intimidation, former PGA Tour pros Wally Armstrong and Terry Anton put together SNAG Golf. In cooperation with 8,000 schools and communities nationwide, SNAG Golf uses colorful, lightweight clubs and tennis-sized balls to help children learn proper technique and increase their excitement for the game.
Although Drive, Chip & Putt isn’t necessarily a camp, it’s an excellent spot for children to showcase the skills they’ve learned over time. Much like the NFL’s Punt, Pass & Kick program, Drive, Chip & Putt is a skills competition for kids 7 to 15. During the competition, the kids drive and test their short game in a competitive but friendly and nurturing atmosphere. It’s perfect for children who are just starting their journey but need a bit of a push or stepping stone to the next level.
If your child manages to pass a series of qualifiers, they’re invited to participate in the finals at the famed Augusta National Golf Club. Who knows — they might just get inspired enough to become the youngest winner of The Masters soon enough.
First Tee is one of the most well-established and best golf camps for kids. Since its inception in 1997, First Tee has offered golf instruction for over 3 million youth at local First Tee chapters from coast to coast.
As First Tee students, your child gets proper golf coaching through certified instructors, fun games, and nine-hole golf throughout the camp. An added bonus is that you don’t have to buy anything. Just sign up at your local chapter and drop your kid off. The camp has all the equipment on site.
Golf camps at First Tee are open to kids and teens aged 5 to 18. It’s also one of the more affordable camps you’ll find anywhere. Generally speaking, week-long camps are only $50 while month-long options will only set you back $100. Contact your local chapter for specific pricing and scheduling.
If you live in a rural area or you’re struggling to find a top-rated or best golf camp for kids, head to your local country club or golf course. Even if some country clubs require memberships, they often open their doors to kids in the community during their camps. Local golf courses also offer certain types of camps in conjunction with high schools, middle schools, elementary schools, and community organizations. When in doubt, ask other parents, and you should find something that’s affordable and convenient.
If one of the best golf camps for kids is outside your budget or too far from your location, your child can still learn fundamentals, intermediate skills, and other important tips to improve their golf game. Through hands-on learning, fun activities, and other golf-centric pursuits, kids can get the necessary instruction and a zest for the links.
While these suggestions may pique your children’s interest, one of the best things you can do is show a love of the game yourself. Golfers like Tiger Woods have stated their love of golf came from playing with a parent. Sometimes, just hitting the links and spending some time together is the best way to learn the game.