Many professional players work as club or teaching pros and take part mainly in local tournaments. There is small elite of pro players that are called “tournament pros” who participate in international competitions. Numerous club and teaching pros started their career as caddies or were just the fans of the game, working at some golf courses and waiting for the certification in the desired profession. The necessary Class A golf professional certification can be obtained at independent universities and institutions. “Tournament pros” began as amateur golfers that became “pros” after some successful competitions with money or prize won from the sponsors. For instance, Jack Nicklaus was the 2nd in the 1960 US Open after Arnold Palmer and became famous with a 72-hole score of 282. He spent one more year with a victory at US Amateur Championship before becoming a pro in 1962.
Golf instruction requires teaching and learning of the game secrets. You need not only technical and physical skills for the game, but also the knowledge of laws and etiquette. In many countries, the instruction is well fulfilled by teachers that have the Professional Golfers Association certification. Such instructors could use physical conditioning, classroom sessions, mental visualization, club fitting, on-course play in real conditions, driving range instruction, and review of videotaped swings in motion to help prepare the players for the game.
About 20 professional tours powered by a PGA or some independent organizations are available at present. They are responsible for events’ organization, sponsors’ finding and competition’s regulation. There are “members” that take part in the majority of the events and “non-members” that participate only in some of them. It is very competitive to become a member of the elite competition and not all golfers can achieve this.
The most famous tour is the PGA one apart from the four World Golf Championships and the four Majors events. The first prize in many PGA events are $800K. The second in the rank of such competitions is the European Tour. Among other major events, there are the Japan Golf competition, the PGA of Australia, the Asian and the Sunshine Tour, the Canadian one, Tour de las Americas, China Golf Association, the Korean Professional Golfers’ Association, Professional Golf Tour of India, the OneAsia Tour, and so on.