Golf equipment and apparel brands have a tremendous opportunity to build on momentum with Generation Z (born 1997-2012).
Sparked by the Covid 19 pandemic, Gen Z participation in the sport is booming. In 2020, the number of junior players (age 6-17) grew 24%. To put that in perspective, 2020 saw the biggest gain in youth golfers since Tiger’s 1997 Masters win.
2021 data is still being gathered by the National Golf Foundation. But early estimates are showing that the total number of rounds played will surpass 2020 by 4 to 5%! Generation Z certainly played a significant role in this growth.
But wait, there's more good news. The cultural conversation about golf has continued to evolve in a positive way. Our analysis of media coverage of golf indicates a decline in the number of negative articles from the top media outlets. Specifically, the previously routine portrayals of golf as exclusionary and backward, have all but disappeared over the last couple years. We think this sunnier media context will make it easier for golf brands to attract brand-savvy teens.