Women of all ages and stages are taking the opportunity to hone their golf skills.
Golf Southland is running a She Loves Golf campaign at the Mataura Golf Club on Wednesday nights.
Golf Southland development manager Simon Boland said the campaign was a Golf New Zealand initiative to encourage more girls and women to play golf.
‘‘She Loves Golf is all about getting women to come along and have their go at golf which is their version.
‘‘We have the traditional form of golf that— believe it or not — for some is a barrier, so we’re trying to remove those barriers and letting the ladies come along and explore and have fun.
‘‘There’s lots of banter and laughter already.’’
There was a driving range and putting and chipping games set up which gave the women the chance to practise different aspects of the game.
The programme was for all of Eastern Southland and while it was being held in Mataura, the Gore and Wyndham clubs were also involved.
‘‘The idea is the clubs will follow up from here and hopefully keep encouraging more women to come along and have a go . . .to allow the women to come in and feel safe in this environment.’’
After running similar campaigns elsewhere, he had discovered while many women might not be members of a golf club, they had played before.
‘‘A lot of women just won’t rock up to golf clubs any more but they will turn up with their friends and have social time.
‘‘The longer they do that the more chance there is of them, one day, joining a golf club.’’
Golf was a sport all members of the family could play together.
‘‘Golf is more than just a game.
‘‘It’s a great social and recreational activity. It’s the game for everyone.’’
Mataura Golf Club secretary Mel Borthwick said about 35 women registered for the programme.
‘‘Just fantastic to see them out there smiling, having a great time.’’
Any woman who would like to come for the next four sessions was welcome, she said.
‘‘The more the merrier.’’
Amy Alksne, of Edendale, said she was taking part in the programme to improve her skills.
‘‘I want to improve so I can have a good round of golf.’’