Ginny Golding Golf

Discovering what GOLF really means

Posted Jul 5th 2010 | News

Article by Gayle

I’ve been hearing about golf escapes for guys for years, always feeling a twinge of envy when I read about the fun they have and lifetime memories they take away from their trips. I always wondered sadly why we never hear about getaways for golfgals. I figured it was just that women were too wrapped up in the daily grind of life and didn’t place enough value in weekend escapes to golf with their buddies.

But then I met Sue Daugulis and Ginny Golding.

These two women have been planning golf getaways for years for women just like me. They commit countless hours of their time to research, plan, organize and execute exciting golf adventures for women who love golf.

And it’s not like these ladies have lots of time on their hands. Sue is president of a highly successful meeting and conference management company in Vancouver, Venue West ( She works round the clock and I can’t imagine how she finds the time to even golf, let alone, create golf adventures for others.
Meanwhile Ginny is a very busy, full time Canadian PGA instructor at the University Golf Club (, the founder of Golfbug Adventures, and golf fashion diva extraordinaire. No one puts orange and purple together better; just check out her very cool Freddie Couples shoes!

I had been hearing great things about Ginny for years and chose her as my coach this spring – I love working with her. She has a refreshing style that brings common sense into golf (an amazing feat given golf is a completely senseless game IMHO).

With Ginny, there is no confusing jargon or useless comments like, “Keep your head down”. Instead, she explains the logic behind the instruction in simple language and funny analogies. In a single lesson, you’ll discover some “ah ha!” moments that will make you pause. And then you’ll walk away feeling like you just snagged a precious gem that will take strokes off your game. You’ll want to share it because it’s such an amazing revelation, but you won’t – it’s your little secret ;)

When I learned about this year’s adventure – 20+ women heading to Kamloops for 3 nights/3 rounds of golf, I jumped at the chance to sign up. And it didn’t take me long to convince my good friend Christine to join me.

Christine and I met on the 1st tee at Langara Golf Course when I was just learning the game and we’ve been great friends ever
since. She has the flexibility of an elastic band, giving her a beautiful fluid swing that is always 30 yards further down the fairway than mine. On second thought, I think I hate her ;)

We drove up to Kamloops in torrential rain, sure that we were dead when the never-ending 18-wheelers sprayed so much water on the windshield, we were driving completely blind. More than once our hearts stopped; it was terrifying. But when we finally arrived at the hotel, we were immediately greeted by women who knew exactly what we needed to forget the harrowing drive – good wine, good food and good friends. Within minutes, we felt right at home with the ladies of the links.

The weekend was one good time after another. Each day started with a clinic with Ginny. Those sessions alone were worth the price of the entire trip. After each clinic, Ginny would tell us to keep track of one statistic during our round.

The first day it was “fairways hit”. I was really blessed with a great team (Shirley, Dorothy & Christine) who hit not only their share of fairways, but mine too. At the end of the day, we had 37 hits, only 1 behind the winning team.

The next day Ginny focused on our short game, so naturally we were being asked to keep track of the # of shots inside 100 yards at Rivershore. In the blistering rain, we laughed our way around the course, but never gave up on trying to win that competition. In planning shots, we would make sure that if we didn’t think we’d get close to the green on our second shots, we’d lay up at about 102 yards, so our 3rd shot didn’t count in the stats. Haha, yes, we were a competitive, but fun group ;)
In the end, with the amazing short games of Michelle, Roslyn and Christine, our team captured first place.

All weekend, funny anecdotes of the day filled the evening conversations. Trash talking was part of the whole experience, but not in the way one might think. Let me explain…

During our first clinic, we learned the value of positive thinking and that GOLF doesn’t stand for “Gentleman Only Ladies Forbidden”. No, G.O.L.F. stands for:
Gratitude + Opportunity + Learning + Fun

You would think that it would be easy to practice good “GOLF” on the course, but it’s amazing how often we let destructive beliefs enter our brains or come out of our mouths, negatively affecting our attitudes and our game. Dan Baker, author of What Happy People Know calls these destructive beliefs, VERB: Victim, Entitlement, Rescue and Blame. Although Dr. Baker probably wasn’t thinking about golf when he came up with VERB, Pia Nilsson and Lynn Marriott of Vision 54 sure saw the connection and passed along their wisdom to Ginny, who thankfully shared it with us by pointing out even on the practice range, how easily we can fall into the VERB trap.

So when any of us uttered or demonstrated any of these VERB beliefs in our speech or demeanour, someone would immediately jump up and yell, “VERB!” Laughter ensued of course, and the negative thoughts were then tossed into the nearest hazard to dwell with the rest of the scum. There was no way we were going to become victims that weekend; no way would we feel more entitled than anyone else. We weren’t going to wallow in self pity, looking for someone to rescue us. And blame was not going to be dished out to others, even when the “other” was the weather that was almost unplayable. No, this weekend was all about G.O.L.F and everyone practiced its core values on and off the course. No wonder everyone was smiling and laughing all the time.

On our last night at the hotel we had a private BBQ; it was an evening of pure delight. The laughter was infectious. Everyone was in a playful mood, sharing funny stories and memorable moments of the day.

But nothing beat Ginny’s story of Angus of Scotland – the shepherd who according to legend invented the game of golf.

Complete with a hilarious Scottish brogue, Ginny regaled us with Angus’s crazy attempts to hit a rock into a gopher hole between his chores of tending sheep.

But what really got us going was when she introduced, Margaret (pronounced ‘Mayorgret’), a wise Scottish lass who told Angus the secret to hitting a ball far enough to reach a hole hundreds of yards away — “Just change the wee steeck!”, she said. She then proceeded to whittle Angus’ club to form a head at the end. Angus was amazed; finally he was able to whack the rock further than he’d ever been able to do with his previous pathetic shaft. Ah yes, even back then, behind every great man, there was a woman who made him that way.

The last day we spent at one of the most talked about courses in Canada – Tobiano. After hearing that it had been voted the Best New Course in Canada for 2008 by both SCOREGolf and Golf Digest Magazine, I dreamed of playing the course that Alice Cooper called, “Absolutely one

of my favourites in British Columbia…okay, Canada…okay, North America. Actually, I can’t think of that many courses anywhere in the world I’d rather play.”
Putting was the focus of the clinic and thank goodness for that! No where was that skill needed more all weekend than at Tobiano. Not because the greens were bad; on the contrary, they were in immaculate condition. But their undulations and lightening pace made them treacherous. Standing over a downhill putt made you want to turn around and putt back uphill, letting gravity do its job. Because if you blew on it, your next shot would require a lofted club. But what an amazing course! I can’t wait to play it again.

It was our last day and although we were all looking forward to seeing our loved ones at home, it was hard to say goodbye. At first I was a bit sad, but then realized that this weekend was the beginning for me, not the end. I have 20+ new golf buddies I didn’t have a week ago, and memories I will treasure forever.

I asked Ginny after it was all over what these getaways meant to her. Here’s what she said, “The success of a golf getaway is dependant on a great itinerary but most of all it’s the people that really make the difference. When you have a group like this one that gels from the get go, it’s a gift. When everyone makes a concerted effort to contribute to the joy and comfort for all and participate fully in all the activities, then it is win-win. My only challenge as a teacher was to educate the women about pregame routines and how these should not involve power shopping in the golf shops 10 minutes before tee times begin!”

Haha…I certainly can appreciate Ginny’s pregame challenge. Imagine 20+ women clambering over a 70% off rack at Macy’s. Then you’ll understand what it was like at the pro shops at every course we played.

Next year, the gals will meet up in Osoyoos for, what Sue calls, a “chip and sip”, and I wouldn’t miss it for the world. Hopefully by then I’ll be able to hit more fairways and shave a few strokes off my inside 100 yard score, to bring more points to my team. Not that I’m blaming anyone for my play, or looking for rescue (haha); I just want to give back to a group of women who gave me so much.

I want to send out a very special thank you to Ginny and Sue for giving me such a wonderful experience and teaching me the true meaning of GOLF.

I am so Grateful to have had the Opportunity to Learn this wonderful game and have Fun with you and the other golfgals in Kamloops. I feel like I just snagged another precious gem, but this one won’t be a secret. I want to share it with every woman I know!