Seven PGA Professionals are celebrating after becoming the first in the UK to complete a Level 4 Certificate in Coaching Golf.
The dedicated group notched up the achievement while combining busy day to day roles and reflects the ever increasing coaching standards among PGA pros who fulfil a range of coaching commitments from grass roots through to European Tour and world level.
The seven in question are Greg Brodie (Foxhills, Surrey), Ben Knight (Chartham Park, Sussex), Alex Sarry (West London Golf Centre, Middlesex), Steven Orr (Cranfield Academy, Sussex), Rick Valentine (Loretto School, Musselburgh), Sam Johnstone (Tidbury Green, West Midlands) and David Brooks (Warren GC, Essex).
The PGA launched the UKCC (United Kingdom Coaching Certificate) endorsed qualification in conjunction with the University of Birmingham aimed at developing coaching expertise and specialist knowledge and skills.
Scotland-based Valentine (pictured above coaching students), a PGA Advanced Professional and director of coaching at Loretto School and Scottish Ladies Coach, revelled in meeting other coaches from different sports. “The course was not sports specific, there were a lot of different sports among lecturers and those on the course and we learnt a lot from them from what they did in their sport.”
Saary, a PGA Advanced Professional, and head county coach for Middlesex and England U16 coach for the south region, added: “One of the biggest things I’ve learned is the importance of getting to know the pupil at a deeper level, understand where they are coming from and understanding their world more thoroughly and in the process giving them a programme more bespoke to them.”
Orr, a PGA Advanced Fellow and director of coaching at the Cranfield academies based in Sussex where he is responsible for 18 coaches, has been spurred on to take a PhD. “It’s probably the best thing I’ve done. I think the reason for that is that it caused me to step back and look at my coaching and look at it as a whole, how I make decisions and why I do what I do,” he said.