With the golf industry still seeing rejuvenated and, at many courses and clubs, unprecedented participation across North America, a growing segment of golfers is taking advantage of the ability to take remote lessons from top teaching pros, anytime and anywhere. V1 Sports (V1), makers of industry-standard video swing analysis technology, reports that a record number of digital lessons were given using the V1 Pro (for teaching pros) and V1 Golf (for golfers) software and mobile apps during the month of September.
Last month’s activity on V1 Pro and V1 Golf marks the most lessons delivered in the month of September in the last five years and a 55-percent increase over 2019’s digital lesson total. Coming hot on the heels of an update to the V1 Pro app, V1 tallied a grand total of 44,520 digital lessons delivered by all of its affiliated golf academies using the V1 Pro platform for digital lessons. Among the academies seeing a continued rise in lessons delivered is the Mike Bender Golf Academy in Orlando, FL. Academy founder Mike Bender, perennially ranked near the top of Golf Digest’s and GOLF Magazine’s Top Teacher lists and the 2009 PGA of America National Teacher of the Year, says their remote lesson business was growing as an extension of their in-person golf schools prior to COVID-19 restrictions on travel and gathering, but has skyrocketed in recent months.
“People have a better understanding of the value of following up in between golf schools and lessons with remote instruction and they are realizing just how personalized, detail-oriented and effective an online lesson can be,” Bender says. “The easy-to-use V1 Golf app and the slick process of sharing swing videos keeps our students on a track of improvement, even if they’re contacting us from Mexico, Venezuela or Germany.”
V1 Sports has remained committed to helping avid golfers facilitate interactive lessons with pros during these unprecedented times. Earlier this year, V1, who saw users surpass the four-million mark in online lessons earlier this year, made significant upgrades to it V1 Pro software and mobile platforms, including a sleek, efficient user interface, dynamic integration of V1 Pressure Mat data and the ability to record real-time tips and drills videos with audio using their live cameras and microphone.
“In many ways, 2020 has served as a tipping point for the utilization of technologies that enable people to be productive from home or anywhere they may be. The V1 Golf and V1 Pro apps connect instructors and golfers in a way that tightens the student/coach bond and gives golfers the satisfaction of improving on an accelerated pace,” says V1 Sports CEO Bryan Finnerty. “Every day, golf instructors are developing ways to effectively increase revenue through the remote V1 Pro platform and that’s not going to go away. It’s a sound path to growth.”
V1’s system of interactive remote golf lessons is powered by easy-to-use tools for video swing capture and sharing as well as functions that help pros create detailed video lessons with voice-over instruction and visual feedback through telestration. From home, golfers can film and send their swings to the teaching pro of their choice and receive lessons and drills using the popular V1 Golf mobile app.
Chandler Rusk, a master instructor for the Graves Golf Academy, the “Moe Norman Single Plane Authority,” points out the increased time online people have had during shelter-in-place protocols has meant more time on YouTube and search engines, mining for swing videos and golf tips. Graves Golf’s wealth of online videos and specialization in a single-plane swing philosophy (used most recently for success on the PGA TOUR by U.S. Open champion Bryson DeChambeau) has made them a magnet for new clientele and their use of remote lessons continues to fuel the growth of the academy’s Gold membership, which includes online instruction, access to hundreds upon hundreds of video lessons, weekly coaching videos, monthly private webinars and more.
“What we can accomplish with remote lessons is helping golfers graduate to the next step,” Rusk says. “Our in-person instruction teaches them what to do and how to do it, but remote lessons enable us to help our students ingrain their proper practice habits. Before and after videos can also keep students motivated to improve. The V1 app makes it easy to engage personally and make progress with our clients when hands-on instruction isn’t convenient.”
To further assist in communication between golf instructors and their students, V1 Sports has shared some helpful points on using the V1 Sports platform to effectively teach students remotely: