"Failure is OK, it happens, it's how you react that makes you a good role model"

​​Golf4Girls4Life Ambassador Stephanie Meadow chats about her journey in the game to date

  • 13 February 2018

​Caption: Stephanie Meadow signs autographs for her young fans

Stephanie Meadow, originally hailing from Jordanstown, Co. Antrim, is arguably the most successful professional female golfer to come from Ireland. Following a world class amateur career, she turned professional in 2014 and although working through some ups and downs since, she is still determined to follow her dreams and continuously work on her game.

The Golf4Girls4Life team got the chance to speak with her on one of her short trips home a couple of months ago and this is what she had to say:

Morning Steph, thanks for chatting to us today. So first tell us, how did you get started in golf?
“No problem, glad to be back in Dublin for a couple of days! It was pretty much my Dad who got me started, he would take me to the course when he was babysitting me and I just wanted to try it, from there I fell in love with the game straight away.”

And what or who has enabled you to get to where you are in golf now?
“Definitely both my parents. They gave up loads of their time taking me places and obviously moving to the states was a big commitment from them. As well as that though, I am grateful to all the ILGU Coaches who helped me, I remember going to the winter training camps with David Kearney and the girls. Now my coach is Alan Johnston but there have been a lot of people who have influenced me and enabled me to progress along the way.”

If you were to tell yourself one thing starting out, what would it be?
“Failure is OK, it happens, life stuff happens but it’s how you react to those things and get through them that makes the difference and that’s what makes you a good person and a good role model.”

And you are a great role model, what does being a Golf4Girls4Life Ambassador mean to you?
“It’s amazing to try and be a role model to these girls, I think it’s great that they have someone to look up to. I am not saying I have accomplished everything I have wanted to accomplish yet but to have girls look up to me is pretty special!”

What tips would you give to a girl just starting her golf journey?
“Stick to the basics! I am a professional golfer competing on the LPGA Tour and I still work on my technical basics every day; alignment, grip, posture – I don’t go to a lesson without my coaching saying ‘would you fix your posture please Stephanie?!’ Also, short game is so vitally important especially when you’re younger.”

And what’s the most important piece of advice you’ve been given?
“’If you’re going to do something, do it right.’ My Dad used to always say that to me. It is very hard to do but I remind myself of that every day and it really makes a difference in all aspects of your life not only just in relation to golf.”

Since turning Professional in 2014, have you had a stand out moment?
“Yes, my first tournament as a Pro, I finished 3rd in the US Open and that was a big start for me! It has had some very positive effects on my career but it has affected my career in some negative ways too – I was thrown into the limelight a wee bit and wasn’t quite ready for it. I’ve learned so much from that experience though so overall it is definitely my standout moment.”

And what about before turning Professional? Top highlights as an amateur?
“Definitely when we won the Curtis Cup in Nairn in Scotland. I had the winning putt, I guess, technically it was given to me! But that was pretty special to have everyone there, there were a lot of Irish there that week and to me that was an awesome week!”

Your game and practice is important to you, but fitness is a big aspect for you as well. What would an average gym session look like?
“At the moment I am focusing on injury prevention and mobility. I recently had an older injury crop up, which was quite scary, even when you’re not a professional athlete injuries can be scary, it hurts, it’s annoying, you can’t do certain things. So for me it’s very important to be flexible and mobile – I would split my time in the gym between mobility and strength training. Keeping strong is great for those extra few yards on the course but I think it makes you feel good about yourself too!”

What has golf taught you over the years?
“Probably manners! (Laughs) I was thrown into Royal Portrush at a very young age so I learned very quickly how to behave! I think that’s a great thing though, I was in an uncomfortable environment starting off but I learned quickly how to make my parents proud and be a ‘good girl’ so to speak. Golf also teaches you to be honest, it’s a game of integrity, you’re expected to uphold that and you should uphold that in the rest of your life also.”

Ok, so obviously you’re a golfer – but outside of that tell us something we don’t know about you
“(Again laughs!) I love to cook! Not many people know that. I don’t get a chance to do it a lot because I am always on the road but I always cook when I’m home. My friends always ask me to make them dinner! I also like to paddleboard which is really fun. Although last time I fell and burst my lip so that wasn’t so fun! I don’t get a lot of free time but when I do, I spend it with my family and my friends - you realise how important that is when you’re on the road so much.”

Stephanie is a Golf4Girls4Life Ambassador, for further information on the programme, or to register your club for the programme visit cgigolf.org HERE