Pandemic sees more than 200 people sign up to play golf in Grimsby

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With restrictions being made to sports due to the coronavirus, many people have been taking up new activities since lockdown instead.

Grimsby Golf Club has seen a large influx in people sign up for memberships since some restrictions were lifted in July.

After being stuck inside for several months, people have decided to give the sport a go, with more than 200 people in their 20s and 30s signing up.

Prior to the coronavirus, golf was declining, with memberships slowly dwindling over the past few years.

But the pandemic has now revitalised the sport in the area, and things look promising.

But golf can be a costly thing to just “give it a go”, with an annual membership at the club costing £798 a year for a full membership.

GrimsbyLive reporter Corey Bedford tried golf for the first time at Grimsby Golf Club’s performance studio

While the club offers intermediate memberships for people aged 18-29, as well as a £100 trial membership, there is another way for people to try before they buy.

Director Simon Jowitt has his own indoor Performance Studio on-site, which is perfect for both beginners and experienced golfers.

With a £30,000 machine set-up to accurately measure every shot you hit, it calculates the ball’s trajectory and predicts exactly where it would land from where you take the shot.

In short, you can play a game of golf without even having to step on the course itself.

Being a complete beginner to the sport, I decided to take the plunge and have a beginner’s session with Simon, who is also a fully-trained golf coach.

The performance studio is ran by Simon Jowitt, Head of Golf at the club and a PGA accredited coach

He offers a six month course for people to either get started or for experienced golfers to perfect their shots.

At £35 per month for six months, it’s much more affordable and giving you PGA level training right from the start.

You can also hire the room privately, or pay for one-off training with Simon, too.

Arriving at the centre, which is based in the club shop, Simon runs through the machine, what it does, and how it works, before getting you set up to do a few shots.

In no time at all I was holding a seven iron and doing my first ever golf swing – and I missed it.

But there was no criticism from Simon, who was just supportive and gave me guidance as to what I was doing wrong.

The £30,000 machine the studio uses to track your shots and calculate where the ball would go

After just a few shots, I had already improved my grip and my stance, and started hitting cleaner shots each time. I was far from perfect, but it was a learning curve that did not feel steep or overwhelming, and I was starting to enjoy it.

Simon’s advice was helpful, too. With the set-up, all of the data from each shot gets sent straight to his tablet, which tells him what part of the club is hitting the shot, at what angle my swing is, and even what angle I’m holding the club at.

In about a space of 45 minutes, I’d made several good shots, improved my speed, and had fun doing so, something I never thought I’d say about playing golf.

It was also surprising at how tiring it can be while playing, too. You can build up quite a sweat from doing the shots, as well as burning calories in the process.

You can burn 350-475 calories playing golf for an hour, while at a driving range, something a bit more similar to the studio, you can burn around 200 to 300.

The screen works with the shot tracker, meaning you can play rounds of golf without having to step foot on the golf course

Before this experience, I’d never considered playing golf before, but afterwards, I can understand why people play it.

The golf club itself is a vast green space which looks quite stunning, but you’re also exercising and having fun at the same time, what’s not to like?

If you have thought about giving golf a go, there’s no time like the present to give it a try.

You can enquire about the Golf Performance Studio by contacting them on the Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Simonjowittpga


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