The Official Report on the State of the Game
Honoring the Top 100 Businesses in Golf
Engaging with technology in a traditional game

The National Golf Foundation exists to foster the growth and vitality of the game and business of golf.

NGF is a community of individuals and golf businesses committed to being the most well-informed advocates for the growth of the industry.

Learn why thousands of industry leaders support the NGF.

Learn more about the trends impacting golf businesses.

As the industry’s leading independent and objective information resource, we provide our members with a comprehensive library of golf research and insights on the state of the game.

Reports & Publications

The NGF’s reports and publications are free to members, providing information and intel to make better-informed decisions. Browse our catalog, from annual reports on participation and golf course supply to more focused reports on key golfer segments and business categories.

Don’t see what you’re looking for? Just ask. We’ve learned a lot in our 80-year history and chances are we have insights that will help.

Log in to access reports and publications.

Golf Industry Facts

24.2 Million

people played on a golf course. Roughly 8% of the U.S. Population

9.3 Million

people played exclusively off-course.

434 Million

rounds of golf played. An average of almost 18 rounds per golfer.


total golf facilities.

14.7 Million

non-golfers are very interested in playing golf. Up 15% over the past two years.

2.6 Million

people played golf for the first time in 2018. Matching 2017 as an all-time high.

107 Million

total reach (played, watched or read about golf). Nearly a third of the U.S. population.

$3.9 Billion

in annual fundraising through local, regional and national charitable events.

Golf by State

Explore golf’s geographic footprint through our interactive map to learn how many courses and golf-related businesses are in each state.

Looking for a specific course or business? Search our database.


The Q – The only publication for everyone interested in the business of golf

A Texas Muni Back from the Brink

In 2012, city leaders in Fort Worth, Texas, made the decision to close a historic 18-hole golf course, Z. Boaz, and convert it to a community park. Fortunately, the same…

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NGF’s 2019 Participation Report

The ways in which people are playing golf and engaging with the game continue to evolve. To reflect this, the NGF several years ago expanded its definition of participation, part…

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NGF Research Snapshot: Fantasy Golf

  Almost eight million Americans participated in a fantasy golf pool or league (similar to fantasy football) in 2018, according to findings from the NGF’s Participation and Engagement Study. While…

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Q&A: PGA TOUR Superstore President & CEO Dick Sullivan

Dick Sullivan has spent a decade at the helm of PGA TOUR Superstore, helping triple the company’s U.S. store count through coast-to-coast expansion. The golf retail giant, which had an…

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Better Understanding Municipal Golf

The NGF receives hundreds of media requests through our email account for data and/or our viewpoint on the golf business. While we do field questions from those with a…

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Isao Aoki on the State of Japanese Golf

Isao Aoki was the first Japanese male golfer inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame, winning 71 times worldwide on six different tours. Aoki’s pioneering spirit during his playing…

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April 2019 National Rounds Played Report

  Rounds-played were up 6.8% in April compared to a year earlier thanks to warmer temperatures in many northern parts of the country. In 2018, April rounds had been down…

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Discovery Golf President Alex Kaplan

  Discovery, Inc. has made a major splash in the golf media world in a relatively short time. Discovery teamed with the PGA TOUR to launch a new live and…

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Exploring ‘Latent Demand’

While golf industry leaders converged in sunny San Diego in April for the 2019 NGF Symposium at Rancho Bernardo Inn, Evan Malter waited in the school pickup line to take…

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NGF Releases 2018 Rounds-Played Summary

The weather picture for 2018 wasn’t a pretty one for golf, contributing to a 4.8 percent decline in rounds-played nationally. After hovering around 460 million for the previous five years,…

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We’re Not Only Golf’s Go-To Source for Data and Research

We Also Provide a Wide Variety of Specialized Services to Help Businesses Compete More Effectively

From e-mail and database marketing to custom research and course-operations consulting, businesses throughout the industry engage the NGF’s team of professional analysts and advisors for personalized solutions. Find out how we can help you.


Custom Research

The NGF custom research team designs and executes qualitative and quantitative research studies to answer specific client questions.  How is my brand perceived vs. competition? What’s the appeal of a new product idea – and how can it be optimized? Who’s my best customer target?


Market & Account Analytics

With nearly 15,000 golf facilities in the US, no company has the staff or resources to chase every sales opportunity.  And while it may be easy to identify the biggest green grass accounts and the iconic venues across the US, it becomes much more challenging to prioritize the next tiers – how to target and allocate limited business development resources.


Facility Consulting

NGF’s facility consulting division has been providing advisory services to golf course owners, prospective owners, lenders and a broad spectrum of other clients for over 30 years. The NGF Consulting practice covers all areas of golf facility businesses and we provide services to public and private golf facilities, driving ranges, alternative golf facilities and other “specialty” golf facilities.


Syndicated Services

Syndicated research may require cooperation among competitors, sharing sensitive company information with NGF which is aggregated and reported back – without compromising individual company data.  NGF is a trusted partner with many of the leading brands in golf, enabling these syndicated solutions.


Email & Database Marketing

Expert direct marketing services to help companies acquire new customers, compete more effectively and generate more revenue.

The Most Reliable Source for Golf Industry Information

The NGF’s proprietary data and research is regularly cited by national news organizations in stories that highlight the health and vitality of the golf industry. See the latest buzz:


"Following the recent report that the golf industry drove $84.1 billion in economic activity in the United States in 2016, an increase of 22.1 percent since 2011, the National Golf Foundation offered more modestly encouraging numbers about the health of the game with Tuesday’s release of its annual Golf Industry Report..."

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"But the scope of the overall golf economy – a $70 billion business -- runs far deeper.

It’s why the National Golf Foundation has released its inaugural listcelebrating the top 100 businesses in golf, a platform that in some ways is the golf biz equivalent of the popular top 100 course rankings. The NGF GOLF 100 was created by the NGF to recognize the most successful, innovative and influential companies and organizations in the game, across a wide variety of categories..."

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"...According to a report from the National Golf Foundation, roughly 51% of Topgolf guests in 2017 were people who had never played traditional golf.

Of these non-golfers, 75% said they were interested in playing traditional golf after visiting a Topgolf location..."

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Join Our Community. Support Your Industry.

People join the NGF because they believe in being smarter about the golf industry.  They want to stay on top of trends and have access to the industry’s most accurate and objective measures of the game’s vitality. Joining the NGF means connecting with a community of like-minded individuals who support the NGF’s efforts to influence golf’s long-term success. Memberships underwrite the many research projects and publications that NGF produces on behalf of the industry.

Contact us for more information.

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