Think your child is a golf phenom?

So you think you have the next golf phenom on your hands. How do you react? Let the child decide his or her next move, according to Doug Lemons, Ohio Junior Golf Academy director and head professional at both the Legends of Massillon and Rolling Green Golf Course, who recently was named one of the top 50 Kids Teachers nationally by U.S. Kids.

So you think you have the next golf phenom on your hands. How do you react? Let the child decide his or her next move, according to Doug Lemons, Ohio Junior Golf Academy director and head professional at both the Legends of Massillon and Rolling Green Golf Course, who recently was named one of the top 50 Kids Teachers nationally by U.S. Kids.

“I have a little trick I do. I tell the parent, ‘Let’s ask so-and-so what he or she wants.’ Their answers have never disappointed me,” Lemons said. “It’s never what the parents want to hear. It’s ‘I just want to have fun’ or ‘I just want to hit the ball.’ The next thing I hear from the parent is, ‘I’ll pick them up at noon.’ ”

Lemons says it’s wrong to underestimate a child’s wishes.

“The child is really the customer. Parents will spend the money if the child is happy,” Lemons said. “I’ve had kids come up with lesson plans for me.”

Lemons, director for the U.S. Kids Canton Local Tour, says that organization offers parents the chance to join a positive coaching alliance through its website.

“It helps parents to learn to coach on the course the right way and to play with their kids,” Lemons said. “They take a pledge to obey rules and not be a crazy parent on the course.

“One thing I’ve learned about working with kids is that you never stop learning. Interaction with them and their parents helps me to know what they are looking for. I’m trying to develop a child to love the game.

“But if they want to be the best they can be, I can help them get there.”

Where to buy

The Repository
Select Rite Aid Stores
Spee-D Foods
Buehler's Fresh Foods
Fishers Foods, including 44th Street NW, Tuscarawas St. W, Fulton Drive, Lincoln Way E. and Cleveland Ave. NW locations
Aultman Hospital Gift Shop
Mercy Medical Center Gift Shop
Gervasi Vineyard Marketplace
Carpe Diem Coffee Shop, downtown Canton and Belden Village Mall locations
News Depot
Avenue Arts Marketplace
Yum Yum Tree Alliance
Grapes in a Glass