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Special Reports

NGF’s reports and publications are free to members, providing data 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. 

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2020 Golf Industry Report

Golf Industry Report

The Golf Industry Report compiles many of the…

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Rounds Played Summary

The National Rounds Played Summary provides an overview…

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Golf Instruction Report

An inside look at the $1 billion golf…

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Off-Course Golf Specialty Retail

NGF’s annual update on off-course golf retail store…

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Summary of Golf Participation in the U.S.

This one-page summary of consumer engagement in golf…

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Golf Participation in the U.S.

The NGF has surveyed Americans regarding golf participation…

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Summary of Golf Facilities in the U.S.

This one-page summary includes a look at golf…

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Golf Facilities in the U.S.

This comprehensive report provides an overview of golf…

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NGF Reads

NGF’s 2022 GolfSAT Award Winners

By National Golf Foundation | April 21, 2022

NGF recognizes 10 facilities in annual GolfSAT customer satisfaction awards

GolfSAT – Explained

By National Golf Foundation | April 14, 2022

NGF’s GolfSAT platform is a golfer satisfaction survey that enables participating courses to compare satisfaction measures against benchmarks of similarly-priced properties nationwide.

Is Golf Coming Up Short?

By Joseph Beditz | April 14, 2022

Are we really in the midst of a short course movement in golf? Yes. And no…

A Longer Look at Short Course Supply

By Erik Matuszewski | April 14, 2022

The U.S. has more Par 3 courses and executive courses combined – over 1,600 – than the total number of golf courses in every other country in the world except Canada, the U.K. and Japan. It’s an abundance of so-called short courses, the kind of golf offering often lauded as being more affordable and appealing for golfers regardless of ability or experience.

Yet amid the ongoing market correction (with more closures than openings every year since 2006), it's been short courses that have closed in the U.S. at a more rapid clip than regulation courses.

This is particularly true with Par 3 …

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Beginning Golfer Makeup

By National Golf Foundation | March 30, 2022

Females and juniors account for a higher proportion of beginning golfers than they do among the overall U.S. on-course golfer population.

As this graphic indicates, women and girls accounted for 37% of those who played on a golf course for the first time in 2021. By comparison, females make up 25% of the 25.1 million on-course golfers overall.

Juniors comprised 31% of beginners in 2021. Overall, kids between the ages of 6 and 17 accounted for 12% of U.S. on-course golf participants.

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Golf Facilities Report Now Available

By National Golf Foundation | February 3, 2022

After two of the most unprecedented years for U.S. golf courses in history, there are signs the decades-long supply correction is dwindling as the market moves toward equilibrium.

The world’s best-supplied golf market saw more total rounds of golf played in 2021 than ever before, with play and engagement continuing to thrive as the coronavirus pandemic stretched on. Amid the correction that’s thinned the number of U.S. facilities about 13% from its peak, the number of golfers per 18 holes is returning to a balance that existed two decades ago, when golf courses were, on the whole, more economically …

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Santa Is On the First Tee

By Joseph Beditz | December 2, 2021

Consumer surveys indicate that gift-giving for all things golf – including equipment, apparel and accessories — is projected to remain strong this holiday season, even as manufacturers and retailers wrestle with production, inventory and shipping challenges.

Military Golf in the U.S.

By National Golf Foundation | November 11, 2021

Lee Trevino had wins big and small during his Hall of Fame playing career, but when asked about the trophy that meant the most to him, he cited the silver bowl he was awarded as a member of The Marine Corps. That trophy, which his wife even went to the trouble of refurbishing, was the prize for winning the 1959 Okinawa Chamber of Commerce Open over the sand greens at Awase Meadows while stationed at Middle Camp Fuji in Yokohama, Japan.

In more recent years, Tiger Woods cut his teeth at Navy Golf Course in Cypress, California, Paula Creamer was introduced …

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Green Fee Changes and the Cost of Golf

By National Golf Foundation | October 22, 2021

When rounds increased almost 14% nationwide in 2020 amid the pandemic, the increased green fee revenue helped some operators offset losses in other areas such as food & beverage, events and tournaments, and merchandise, not to mention the spring stretch when over half of U.S. golf facilities were closed due to the coronavirus. It also prompted questions about whether, in 2021, there was any correlative increase in playing fees — whether in response to the heightened demand, a rise in operational costs, lost revenue, minimum wage increases, or other reasons.

In a summer survey of public golf course operators, 67% reported some kind …

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Course Openings That Bucked the Trend

By National Golf Foundation | August 21, 2021

There have been far more golf course closures than openings in the U.S. over the past 15 years. But did you realize that almost 740 U.S. golf courses have had openings during that period? That total, during what’s looked at as a “down period” for the industry, is more than the entire golf course supply in nations such as Scotland, Ireland, Spain and South Africa.

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