Without caring mentors, positive youth development just doesn’t happen. At The First Tee, we take coaching seriously. We believe that a meaningful, quality relationship between coach and participant is vital to our program. Our mission wouldn’t be possible without our dedicated coaches.
Are you interested in mentoring youth through coaching? Coach Jimmy Bayne shares why he decided to coach at The First Tee and how you can, too!
by Jimmy Bayne Jr., PGA
PGA Teaching Professional & coach for
The First Tee of the Triad at Oak Hollow Golf Course
MY LOVE OF THE GAME
My love for golf started at an early age. My father worked on a golf course and by age two I had my own clubs. I played in my first golf tournament by age nine and at age 12 I had my first job—picking up range balls. I played golf in both middle and high school and received a golf scholarship to High Point University in North Carolina. I claimed professional status and enrolled in the PGA of America’s Golf Management University Program and am now a Class “A” PGA Professional. In 1997 I was offered a position at Oak Hollow Golf Course and have worked here ever since.
I NOTICED AN ALARMING TREND
Over the years I started to notice a trend in golf—youth participation was declining every year. The reality also hit me that those who encouraged me when I was young were leaving the sport because of declining health and age, which got me thinking…Who was going to pick up the torch for those that are no longer able to be out on the golf course?
MY TURNING POINT
The First Tee’s philosophy and the way it is taught has it right. They teach simple yet very important skills like introducing oneself, handshaking and removing hats to show respect. Our society as a whole has lost the aspect of showing respect to one another, which was especially evident to me a couple years ago.
My family and I traveled to a soccer game where my son was playing goalie. He was elbowed in the ribs by an opposing player and instantly crumpled to the ground. Immediately the kids got down on one knee to show respect for an injured player. As I went to my son’s aid, I heard the opposing coach yell at his players to get off their knee. Those players were on their knee for no more than ten seconds and their coach said this game is not about respect.
I thought of The First Tee Code of Conduct—Respect for Self, Respect of Others and Respect for Your Environment—and I realized how much the platform I had been given as a coach would truly matter.
HOW I BECAME INVOLVED WITH THE FIRST TEE OF the TRIAD
In 2011, Oak Hollow Golf Course became a program location for The First Tee of the Triad. After being asked to become a coach, I participated in the coach training to familiarize myself with the curriculum. This is when my eyes began to open to a new way of teaching golf and, as an added bonus, I could have a lasting impact on the lives of the young people The First Tee was going to send my way.
HELPING TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE
I learned many life skills playing golf over the years. When I opened the Par yardage book for the first time, I saw how the word GAME was used in the first lesson, I was very impressed. GAME stands for Go play, And explore, My interests, and Enjoy what is fun for me. This is exactly what I had done with my own kids.
All of the participants who go through The First Tee will be influenced by the life skills they were taught through this amazing program. I consider it a privilege and honor to be a coach for The First Tee.
How You can Become a Coach at The First Tee
We currently have more than 3,700 coaches signed up with The First Tee, including PGA and LPGA pros, as well as volunteers. But you don’t have to be a golf pro or even a good golfer. With The First Tee Coach Program, we provide the training you need.