For a school project, Nick interviewed his golf coach, Coach Paul, about being a coach, how to be an instructor and what he likes about golf. Nick created the questions and conducted the interview.
This got me thinking about how important it is for our kids to have an active voice in the decision on who is going to be their golf coach. As parents, we think because we are paying for the lessons and hear of a great coach that we are the only decision makers. We are truly not the decision makers. We are the bank, the taxi driver, the cheerleader and the fan club. As parents, we need to step back and let our child have the interaction with a potential coach.
Help prepare your child for an interview with a potential coach. Ask your child to write down five to 10 questions of what they need from a coach…not what they want from a coach. Look over the list. Make edits and if needed, have your child re-write the questions. Run though a mock interview with your child by pretending to be the golf coach. If your child is older and experienced, they could easily skip a mock interview.
Schedule a meeting with the potential coach and let them know that your child would like to meet with them and ask them a couple of questions. It is up to you if you would like to share the questions in advance. This is about communication, not shock and surprise.
After the interview, make sure your child takes the time to follow up with a thank you to the coach. Do not make a rush decision. If more coaches need to be interviewed, schedule more. Most of all, a child’s gut feeling is usually correct. Let them tell you why they want a particular coach and not the other way around.
Some of Nick’s non-newbie questions when interviewing a coach:
- During tournament season, do you try to change skills?
- Are you hands-on or lecture?
- What percentage is taught on the range or on the course?
- What is your temperament?
- Do you believe in teaching a precision game or power game?
- Do you believe the game is won with short game or long game?
- Do you believe in first working on distance or mechanics with the swing?