Monday, 7 January 2013

Interview with the one and only Kevin Graf....

I know for a fact that while you read the following interview you will not only learn something but you will get a few chuckles along the way.  Kevin and I met in College in Barrie where we were both studying Professional Golf Course Management.  We became instant friends and helped each other through College.  Kevin is currently Head Professional and Tournament Director out in Alberta at a fabulous Golf Course called The Links of Glen Eagles.  I am so proud of how far he has come and his commitment to the game of golf.  I hope you enjoy the following interview as much as I did.

What made you choose to be in the Golf Industry?
Golf has always been a passion of mine since I was young. When I researched the golf program during high school I was instantly sold because it meant that I got to pursue a career doing something that I knew I loved. One of the best things about working in the golf industry is waking up every morning and being excited to go to work.

What was your favourite class in College / University?
I attended “The Last Class” campus bar a lot so that was one of my favorites. However, if we’re talking education, I would have to say that the Introduction to the Golf Swing class interested me the most. Since my first year in college my passion in the golf industry had been teaching so that class provided me with a lot of useful information that I was able to take with me and use during my lessons.

What was the best advice you were given for your golf game?
I got an idea from a friend that I currently use and it seems to help and lighten my mood after hitting a bad shot. He told me to attach a baby soother to my golf bag, and every time I hit a bad shot to touch the soother. The reason is to remind myself not to be a baby and to suck it up and recover on the next shot! I find it hard not to smile after a bad shot when I go over to my bag and touch my soother!

What is your favourite putting drill?
My favorite putting drill is very simple. With a playing partner and 1 ball each, set up at a two holes, preferably around 20 feet apart. Each player putts to the others hole until one player makes the putt, every time a putt is made you switch sides. I usually play until 1 person gets to 5-10 putts made. It’s a fun game to play against another person and because you’re so focused on the score, you work on things that you don’t even think about like hitting your line, and judging the speed of the putt. When you’re finding two holes to play this game on, try finding an area where one putt is downhill, and one is uphill.

Has it been difficult growing in an industry so dominated by men?
I think it’s definitely been tough for sure. Golf is such a social sport which makes it fun for anyone. It has definitely been dominated by men and is still the case now, however, we’re starting to see the ratio between men and women golfers grow closer. Do I think that ratio will ever become even? Probably not, but each year I am starting to see more and more female golfers which is great. Even from a teaching perspective, I have taught more female golfers each year. To be honest, I enjoy teaching women a little bit more because, well, they listen ;).

What was your best golf experience thus far?
I would have to say my best golf experience was when I successfully passed my Playing Ability Test and got my pro card with my dad caddying for me. My dad has been a big influence on my life and my golf game so to have him there with me when I achieved that was pretty special. 

What is your favourite golf course and why?
I have a few favorites but out of all the courses that I have played, Greywolf in Invermere, British Columbia would probably be my favorite. Pebble beach is easily a favorite that I haven’t played yet.


What do you feel are the benefits of playing a Par 3 Executive Golf Course?
I think the best thing about par 3 executive courses is the fact that anyone can play them. They are shorter which allows juniors and beginners the opportunity to practice and get comfortable with the game before making the jump to a full course. It also gives the more skilled or experienced players a chance to work specifically on their iron play.

Who is your favourite player on the PGA?
Tiger Woods has always been my favorite. I saw him play in the 1996 Bell Canadian Open when I was 7, the next year I started golfing. His GOLF GAME has always been an inspiration to me.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In 5 years, I hope to still be with the course I am currently working at. By then, maybe as the Director of Golf. I have been fortunate to achieve the Head Golf Professional position at such an early age, and I will continue to work hard to further my career.

What is your favourite golf brand?
Working at a Nike exclusive golf course for the past 5 years, if I said anything but Nike I might lose my job! Not to take anything away from Nike though, the technology they have put in to their clubs over the past few years has been incredible and I’ve always been a big fan of their clothing lines. I am very exciting to play the new woods that they’ve released for 2013; red is the new black ;)

What Club has been in your bag the longest?
I have had a 7-wood in my bag since I was 12. Although the actual make and model of the club has changed over the years, a 7-wood has always been in there. It’s just been one of those clubs that seems to get me out of trouble when I get into it, and trust me; when there is trouble on the golf course, I seem to have no problem finding it. So the club has come in handy quite a bit.

No comments:

Post a Comment