Along with the new millennium has come a noticeable surge in the popularity of womens golf. The number of both professional and amateur female golfers has increased significantly. That means the face of golf is changing in dramatic fashion, as golf is quickly losing its reputation as an “old boys’ game.”
Although it may surprise some, women have played professional golf since the nineteenth century. But traditionally, golf has been a hugely male-dominated sport, with many golfing clubs not even permitting women players to set foot on their greens. The journey to playing golf has not been a painless road for aspiring women.
Typically, it takes a spark of some sort to set off an explosive rise in popularity for a particular sport. For men’s golf, that spark was Tiger Woods, whose unmatched achievements over the last decade or so spurred the popularity of golf to unprecedented levels. It is quite interesting to note that, as a boy, Tiger was denied entry into a golfing club simply because of the color of his skin, a club which now welcomes the golfing superstar with open arms.
In the world of women’s golf, sensational teenager Michelle Wie has without doubt been a catalyst in bringing great attention to the sport of women’s golf in general, as she has sought to use her impressive golfing abilities to challenge men head to head. Similarly to Woods, perhaps her efforts will help eradicate the last barriers standing in the path of women golfers, including those few remaining clubs that still discriminate toward female golfers.
Apart from Wie’s actual level of success in her quest to play with the men, in the past five years, women’s golf has witnessed a huge rise in popularity partly thanks to her efforts as well as the brilliant play of many other great women golfers such as Annika Sorenstam. And that popularity is only expected to increase. Women are now entering the game at an unprecedented pace, with the fastest rising demographic taking up the sport being women in their 20s and younger.
Interestingly, however, there is a slight difference in the manner in which women and men approach the sport. Women tend to view golf primarily as a social activity with competitive undertones, while men see golf primarily as a competitive activity with social undertones. So, while men are obsessing over their score, women are just trying to have a good time.
But regardless of the motives, women have indisputably embraced golfFind Article, and the phenomenon has only benefited the game.