At the First Tee of a Kids Golf Tournament

At the first tee, you will sign in with the starting official.  He will introduce you to your playing partners and hand out score cards.  Each player must have unique markings on their ball. Usually a Sharpie® or other marker is used to make an easily identifiable mark on the ball such as the player’s initials.  The players will identify their ball to their pairing to ensure there can be no confusion during play.  Keep in mind that relying just on the ball brand and number is not acceptable, as according to USGA rules, a player must be able to identify the ball as specifically hers.

At the younger ages, for example seven years old and younger, there may be one score card for the whole pairing, with a parent volunteering to keep score for the kids.  Otherwise, each player gets a card and then they swap score cards so that each player’s score is recorded by a playing partner.  At ages eight and nine, most often, a parent-caddy will mark the score card on the player’s behalf. Starting at ten years of age, some tours will require the player to mark the score themselves.  Some may not even allow caddies.

Once the pairing is introduced, balls identified, and score cards handed out, the starter will announce the “batting order” and may announce each player. The yips are a well known feeling for all golfers on the first tee. Encourage your child golfer to take a breath, hold it for a three count, then let it out slowly … and then have fun! Let her know that she’s already a winner just for being there.

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