How to Become a Tour Professional in Golf

By Steve Silverman

Becoming a touring pro is a daunting task. There are millions of golfers throughout the world and there are less than 2,000 professionals who regularly play in any of the major tours in North America, Europe and Asia. However, nobody should be thrown off the track just because the odds are against them. Golfers who get started as children, receive lessons from top teachers and diligently work on their game have a shot at making the tour.


Difficulty: Challenging
Step 1
Start playing the game as a youngster. Take lessons whenever you get them. In order to have a legitimate chance to make it as a touring professional, you need the support of financially secure parents who are willing to pay for lessons, schools and entry fees in tournaments.
Step 2
Enter as many competitions as you can once you reach the age of 12. At that point, you can start to see how you play compared to other golfers of your age. More than that, you can get the taste of competition. The more tournaments your enter, the better you will handle pressure as you get older.
Step 3
Play for your high school and college golf teams. Many of the top players on today's tour made a name for themselves as high school and college golfers. Most golfers will win scholarships to play in college and that's the usual stepping stone to make the professional tour.
Step 4
Go to PGA qualifying school after your college career is over. This is how you can earn a spot on a pro tour. Qualifying schools are held in Florida and California and it usually consists of a two- or four-day tournaments to qualify for the Tour, the feeder tour to the PGA Tour. You must reach the third stage of the Qualifying school tournaments. This is not cheap. The journey through pre-qualifying and tournament stages can cost you more than $10,000. The final stage, features six grueling rounds. The top 45 finishers (plus ties) earn their tour card for the year, while the remaining golfers to make it to this stage gain Tour status allowing them to play on the tour but without a guarantee they will be able to play in every event. Performance on the Tour will determine if you can advance to the PGA Tour, the premier golf tour. 
Step 5
Go back to qualifying school if you don't make it the first time. There are other minor or satellite tours that you can play on to hone your skills while you wait for another chance to get your card.

Tips & Warnings

Stay determined and single-minded as you work on your game and attempt to earn your PGA tour card.

About The Author

Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism.


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