The Ladies Who Pioneered Professional Golf for Women
The world today is more aware of gender equality and equal opportunities for everyone. There are several groups and organizations scattered all around the world who fight against discrimination against women. Various campaigns and movements for women empowerment take place throughout the world every day. All these efforts have made this world a better place to live in than it was centuries ago, though there is still a lot to be done. Women in all fields have a representation today, be it sports or politics. Women’s golf is a huge market today and has a large number of audiences, which is multiplying every year. Young girls are taking up the sport, but it was not the same a few centuries ago. Some brave and talented women have taken golf for women to where it is today. Here are some of the women, who changed the sport of golf for the better, and paved the way for all women to participate.
Royal Family Women
Queen Mary was the Queen of Scotland in the mid-sixteenth century. She became interested in golf after playing a game quite similar to golf in France. After returning from France, Queen Mary ordered to build a golf course, which is today known as the St. Andrews golf course. She is also credited for inventing the word, ‘caddie.’ The Queen’s love for golf made it quite famous in Scotland and the UK. Many people objected at women playing golf at that time, but Queen Mary didn’t pay any attention to those objections.
Other Women Who Spearheaded Women’s Gold
- Issette Miller was the top female golf player in the 1890s. She was the first women to call for equal opportunities for the new players and introduced the handicap system in golf. This system helped the players with less ability to compete against the best players.
- Didrikson Zaharias became the first female golfer to compete against the men at a PGA tournament in 1938. She again participated in three more golf tournaments organized by the PGA in 1945. Also known as babe, Didrikson co-founded the LPGA, an association for ladies golf. Didrikson was a sports superstar in America even before she became a golfer. She was an Olympic gold medalist in javelin and hurdles. She was also a great basketball player, and by the end of her golf career, she had won every award, and title there was to win in ladies golf.
- In the year 1978, Nancy Lopez achieved something which no female golfer had met before. The LPGA awarded her the Rookie and player of the year, which was unheard of before in one year. She attained the status of amateur golfer at the age of just 12. She won numerous trophies till she stepped into the professional golfing world at 19. She had achieved a very close bond with her fans because of her charming and friendly personality.
- Karrie Webb, the most celebrated Australian female golfer, showed the world and aspiring young female golfers that there is a lot of fame and money in women’s golf. She became the first female golfer to win one million dollars in just one season in 1996. She just took two to complete the journey from amateur to a professional golfer. Karrie played a significant role in popularizing the sport in the 1990s and 2000s.