Courtesy of NZ Golf:
Golf in New Zealand continues to thrive despite the recent Covid-19 pandemic, with statistics showing an increase in membership throughout the country from this time last year.
New Zealand Golf has seen a 4.1% increase in golf club memberships across the country since the end of June 2019, with a recent spike from April to May as the country came out of isolation.
June 2020 has also seen a significant increase in rounds played compared to June 2019 despite an additional weekend in the month of June last year. An 11.1% increase in rounds played this year outlines golf’s popularity in what has been a tough year for most sports in New Zealand.
Golf plays a vital part in the lives of New Zealand golfers mentally, physically, and socially; bringing people together in a safe environment, often creating a community hub at local golf clubs around the country.
New Zealand Golf Chief Executive Dean Murphy says “The state of golf in New Zealand post Covid-19 is quite amazing. We’ve seen a record in number of rounds played this year and we were up 28% for the first 15 days of June compared to last year. There is a lot of great golfing activity happening throughout the country.
“When New Zealand moved into isolation it was highlighted how important golf was to both members and casual golfers. As New Zealand started to move out of Covid-19 Alert Level 4 the playing of golf was relatively simple under Alert Level 3 guidelines compared to other sports, so a lot of people started playing as it was a great way to get outdoors during a difficult time.
“There are a lot of golf clubs that have signed a number of new members as a result, which is a great thing for the game in New Zealand,” Murphy says.
For the first time in 10 years junior membership and rounds played by young people has substantially increased. Junior membership has increased 13% and rounds played being up by 12%.
Over 105,000 golfers are currently members of a golf club, with over 120,000 golfers registered as casual players.
Canterbury has seen an annual increase in membership of 3.5%, and rounds played through the start of June increased by 30%.