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21 May, 2021

Blind Golf come and try day

Golf is commonly regarded as one of the most difficult and frustrating sports activities out there. But what if you were blind?

Golfers in the Cairns area will soon get a chance to find out first hand at the upcoming Come and Try Blind Golf day at the upcoming Great Barrier Reef Masters Games at 4:00pm to 5:30pm this Saturday at Half Moon Bay Golf club.

Queensland Blind Golf, a not-for-profit association made up of blind and visually impaired golfers of all ages and abilities will be presenting a free session for anyone curious about the sport of blind golf to find out more.

Neil Herdegen, the current 2020 Queensland Blind Golf champion will be on hand to assist presenting the session and is particularly excited about opportunities that blind and visually impaired players now have.

“Not too many people realise that Blind Golf is actually a very rewarding and fulfilling pastime for people of all ages and all levels of vision”

“Golf is also one of the few sports that blind people can excel at - Ït’s one of the only sports that uses a stationary ball.

“We have caddies that help align the players up with the ball and the target, the golfer then makes a swing and hopefully the ball will get in the way and fly towards the hole he said.

Blind Golf Queensland is part of Blind Golf Australia which in turn is a member country if the International Blind Golf Association. Our players can enjoy the social aspects of golf, competing in local and club based social play and there’s an option to become more competitive by competing in regular state, regional and national competitions.

Blind Golf Queensland has also started a junior program which is aimed at encouraging participation from kids who have less than perfect vision.

BGQ secretary Neil Herdegen believes in the potential benefits that golf can offer younger players too, touting the newly-established blind juniors program as one of the first of its type in the world.

“The Blind Golf Junior program is really starting to attract some of the big names in golf in the country so we excited about the prospect of bringing blind golf to vision impaired kids on a much wider scale very soon” he said.

Neil Herdegen is also a fully-qualified all-abilities PGA community coach and will be helping facilitate the come and try day on the 22nd of May.

He says the come and try days are fun and safe and are conducted along the same lines as the national PGA training programs for students and adults who are wanting to get into golf.

“We’re here to show how great Blind Golf can be – it has the potential to change lives and bring happiness and joy to people’s lives” he said.

“Blind Golfers have the option of travelling widely to attend competitions and social matches. The social side of Blind Golf is designed to be liberating and exciting” according to Mr Herdegen.

It’s also more fun and a lot easier than what most people would initially assume.

Golfers are completely supported according to their individual needs and all competition is kept strictly fun and amicable.

“We’re not too worried about trophies and prizes – one only has to look at the smiles and howls of joy coming from our players whenever we’re on the golf course – it’s easy to see who the real winners are” he said.



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