• Golf originated in Scotland and was introduced to America in Charleston, South Carolina, in the mid-18th century by Scottish traders.
  • There are about 40 million American golfers (defined as anyone age 5 and above who either played a round of golf or visited a golf practice facility).
  • There are more than 15,800 golf facilities in the nation.
  • Experts say that about 70% of putts are made from 7 feet or shorter and that about 62% of an average round of golf takes place on the putting green.
  • Golfers spend about $25 billion a year on golf equipment and fees, almost $20 billion a year on public and private course fees and dues, and over $26 billion a year on golf travel
  • In the U.S., an average round of golf at a daily fee course on the weekend is $40.
  • An average 18-hole daily fee golf course records 30,000 rounds per year and employs 13 full-time people.
  • Currently there are roughly 60 million golfers in the world and about 30,000 golf courses.
  • The Buick Scramble is the world's largest golf tournament with more than 100,000 participants. The Ryder Cup, played every two years between a team of American players and a team of European players, is the most prestigious team golf event in the world.

Interesting Golf Tidbits

  • Several countries claimed to have originated the game of golf, but Scotland is the choice "home of golf." Golf was introduced to America in Charleston, South Carolina, in the mid-18th century by Scottish traders.
  • In 1998, a National Golf Foundation report projected that between 32-34 million golfers will play 730-780 million rounds by the year 2010.
  • According to the NGF, golf is one of the few sports that players spend more money on as they age; more than 50% of new golfers are women.
  • The PGA (Professional Golf Association) of America was founded in 1916, in New York with 35 members. Until 1928, a membership cost $5 when it was increased to $10. Today, the PGA conducts four premier golf events: the Ryder Cup Matches, the PGA Championship, the Senior PGA Championship, and the PGA Grand Slam of Golf; and is the largest working sports organization in the world with over 27,000 members.
  • In 1922, the maximum price charged by manufacturers for a PGA line of irons was $3.00.
  • About 4 million, or 15%, of all golfers are permanent residents of a golf course community.
  • Since 1996, the African-American golfer population has increased about 30%, and more than 100% since 1991.
  • Today, China has more than 50 golf courses with 100 under construction. Spring City Golf & Lake Resort, designed by Jack Nicklaus, will soon feature the first Club Med in China.
  • Golfing under floodlights at night is becoming popular in Malaysia, as it can get excruciatingly hot during the day.
  • There are more golf courses in Japan than any other nation except the U.S. Golf Club Memberships in Japan are bought and sold like stocks. At one time, Kogenei Country Club sold memberships for $3.2 million!
  • The oldest golf club outside the British Isles is "Royal Calcutta" in India with a history dating back to 1829.
  • For a fifth of the world's inhabitants the cost of a day's round of golf at Pebble Beach would be enough money to live on for a year.

Facts & figures taken from Planet Golf, Golf Digest, June 1999,
and the National Golf Foundation.