Letter from the Editor: Cupid Strikes Again, How Shannon Fell in Love with Golf

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Letter from the Editor: Cupid Strikes Again, How Shannon Fell in Love with Golf

Like many newbies, Shannon's story started as a bit of a blind date before she fell head over heels for golf
Woman 50's Playing
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Written By:

Ashleigh McLaughlin

Ashleigh is the Managing Director of the LPGA Women's Network. She's a former collegiate golfer with a degree in Marketing and Communications from Florida State University. When she's not crafting content, you can find her doing the Cupid Shuffle at an LPGA*USGA Girls Golf clinic.

Throughout my career with the LPGA, I’ve met a lot of golfers. Sometimes, those golfers are women. Usually, when I meet a fellow golfer, her face lights up, like I’ve opened up this other side of her she usually keeps closed. For me, golf is a way to reconnect with the happy memories I created with my dad and my siblings growing up. One part family time, two parts nostalgia. But I’m fascinated by what calls other women to the golf course.

This happened to me just yesterday, so I figured I’d introduce to you a woman named Shannon.

I’ve only known Shannon for a little while, but her story is all too familiar.

She didn’t play golf growing up. She didn’t watch golf. The sport just hung out on the sidelines—as distant from golf in her day-to-day as entering a new career in motorsports would be from mine. Shannon is a spry 50-something and a recent empty-nester who wanted a way for her and her husband to fill the newly quiet evenings and weekends.

And one day, they tried golf.

It clicked immediately. She told me the same thing I’ve heard I don’t know how many times: “I wish I had known how fun golf was a long time ago.”

Let’s be honest for a moment. Golf has gotten a bad rap over the years for being boring. The way my non-golfing friends wrinkle their noses when I tell them about the latest golf telecast pretty much says it all. So I always get a little, satisfying thrill when someone finally gives the game a try for themselves and discovers all of its hidden—and not so hidden—charms.

Shannon and her husband fell head over heels for the game, but like most newbies, had almost no idea where to start. She knew the basics: she needed a golf course and she needed some golf clubs.

The course was the easy part. There was a little municipal course not far from her home where she and her husband could dabble through a few holes after work. Clubs were another story.

On a good day, purchasing equipment for a new sport or hobby is daunting enough, but with no golf friends to confide in and not wanting to look foolish in front of the pro at her local course, she wasn’t sure where to turn.

As fate would have it, she stumbled upon a beat-up old set of clubs at a swap meet for a whopping $2. Not the best, but any start is worlds better than no start at all.

Shannon’s story really stuck with me, and I wanted to share it here to hopefully inspire you to see that there are so many entry points that golf allows, and the ability to persevere through whatever obstacles is what really makes this game great.

I’m reminded of some of our recent articles and videos, the LPGA’s new #DriveOn campaign, and the memory of Marilynn Smith one the LPGA’s original 13 founders who passed away in early April. All of the women we’ve featured on the website and even our subscribers, prove to us every day that golf is not just a game, but an opportunity to pursue anything, whether that be providing opportunities for women in the game, finding peace out on the course, or just starting up a new hobby to do after work.

Whether you want to crush it like Tiger, or try something new like Shannon, there’s no wrong way to start playing the game.

So we want to know . . . what motivated you to pick up the game? Let us know in the comments below and share this story with a friend who inspires you to #DriveOn.

Happy golfing,

Ashleigh's Signature

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Lyn Maness

I loved reading Shannon’s story. I took up golf four years ago, because I was motivated by the desire to learn a new sport in mid-life. Golf is not easy, but if one preservers, it can be quite enjoyable. I would recommend lessons from a highly qualified pro, and then it will take lots of practice! I think there are so many social advantages to playing golf, and it is a sport that one can enjoy for a lifetime.

Ashleigh

Agree 1000%!

Lin Barker

Our only home- town doctor played golf every Wednesday. You didn’t get sick on Wesdenday. I played a few times with co- workers, but none of us knew the rules. In my 40’s I took lessons from a great teacher. In the dead of winter he has me chipping golf balls out of heavy weeds. The game finally stuck when I joined a women’s league. I fit in the middle of the age- groups and learned I knew nothing about the rules. So after a year of no golf, I’m energized by the Amateur Golf League. Lessons are in my… Read more »

Ashleigh

You’re on your way Lin! You’d be amazed how quickly you’ll continue seeing improvement with tips from an instructor.

Gail

My intro was with my Dad( not a golfer ) who did take my bro and I to a nearby course. We had no clue, but my Dad said I could be good😀. Many years later…… where i worked(/RI COLLEGE) we had a 9;hole league in the summer- faculty/ staff and even janitors joined and I borrowed a small set of clubs from our REC dept.
I can remember our President telling me to keep my feet still. Still do not have a complete swing, but I head up a golf league and love trying.
High handicapper👍😀
Gail

Ashleigh

Golf claps for you Gail! 👏👏👏

Rose

I was a tennis player and my husband is a golfer. He tried and tried to make me try golf but it seemed so boring. One day he bought me a Nancy Lopez 7 iron to just try it out. That was the beginning of my love for the sport! I started taking lessons. Joined a women’s league after much persuasion from my husband. And now as seniors we have a healthy, fun pastime together and with friends!

Ashleigh

Yay for pastimes with the ones you love! ❤️

I started playing golf for fun with work colleagues as an after work 9 hole weekly event. Back then the golf was secondary to our wishing to reach the “10th hole” to throw back some drinks, eat and have some great laughs about how bad we all sucked at golf. We’d give away best dressed awards, most clubs awards and other crazy things to make it interesting. Within a few years our ladies after work game got some interest from some of the men in the company who played in a men’s league but said they didn’t enjoy it because… Read more »

Ashleigh

Your story is incredible Sheri! So neat that you started for fun with co-workers, got the guys involved too, played on Tour AND and created an entirely new career for yourself. Golf can truly take you to some unexpected places along the way 😊

Beautifully written! I admire the way you shared what her #DriveOn reason was. Mine is much the same. I just wanted to be able to go play every once in a while, now I am a World Ranked Golfer with a Disability… a #GofinGranny #OneHandedLadyGolfer who’ s very mission is to #inviteHER #AdaptiveGolfHERS to #DriveOn too!