Tag Archive for: Anders Mankert
Mankert, from Cosby Golf Club, Leicestershire, was recognised at the England Golf Awards at the Royal Lancaster London, which highlighted all that’s great about golf in England.
Mankert was celebrated for the difference he has made to blind and visually impaired golfers and to young players making their way in the game.
Guests at the glittering, black tie event – including influential figures from across the sport, volunteers, coaches, clubs and counties – applauded Mankert for his remarkable volunteer contributions which span more than two decades.
He was nominated by blind students who put him forward for “being a unique inspiration and primarily for introducing us to the sport which has changed our life!” The judges agreed, commenting: “Anders has literally given time, expertise and selfless dedication over 20 years, helping to extend the game’s inclusivity.”
Mankert said of his award: “It’s not why I do it, but it’s a lovely, lovely thing to be recognised for your efforts and to know that people actually care. It’s quite humbling and it’s the most amazing thing that has happened in my career.”
His story begins back in the mid-1990s when he saw a group of blind and visually impaired players making weekly visits to a golf range. He realised he could help them, tentatively offered his services and has been working with them, and others, ever since, without charging a penny. “We have just carried on for the next 20 years!” he said.
Mankert, an Advanced Fellow of the PGA and an honorary life member of the England and Wales Blind Golf Association, does far more than teach the technical skills. When one of his students was unable to find an all-important guide to accompany him on the course, he persuaded a local newspaper to feature the blind golfer – with the result that 17 people volunteered to help.
When other students, often unable to work, cannot afford golf club subscriptions he contacts local clubs to ask if they will waive their fees. Some willingly open their doors, but it can also be a tough task – Mankert wrote to 15 clubs on behalf of one player and didn’t receive a single reply.
But the setbacks are far outweighed by the achievements. The player who was very depressed after losing his sight overnight and is now British No 1, has competed in world championships and counts Mankert as a personal friend. The visually impaired girl who is now able to play weekly golf with her dad. The young offender who almost blinded his victim with a shot from an air rifle and was ordered by a judge to act as a blind person’s carer for a week. “It was genius,” said Mankert, who described how the surly, unhelpful young man transformed into a phenomenal carer.
There’s also satisfaction achieved by player after player. “It strikes me that golf must be the hardest possible game for a blind person to take up,” said Mankert. “But I think they feel that if they can play golf and see some progress they can pretty much have a go at anything and you can see their confidence growing.”
There’s also satisfaction for Mankert. “I get masses out of this. I have really enjoyed it, it’s very rewarding to see how something small on my part, giving up a little bit of time, has had such a tremendous impact. It’s unbelievable.”
Mankert also runs a scholarship programme offering young golfers the opportunity to work like a tour pro for a year. They receive unlimited coaching and mentoring from Mankert together with support from specialists such as a physiotherapist and a dietician.
He’s just awarded his sixth scholarship, selecting the winner from 387 applicants from across the country. One of his former protégées, Ryan Evans, is now a European Tour player, and another is a PGA professional, while all have improved their golf and grown personally and in confidence.
“When I was young lots of people helped me and so it’s quite important to give a bit back, it just feels the right thing to do,” said Mankert.
Main feature image: Anders Mankert (left) receives his award from Stuart Attfield on behalf of event sponsors Bridgestone.
Tag Archive for: Anders Mankert
Anders is an award winning Pro and owner of the new 100% Toptracer facility Leicester Golf Centre which was recently named by BBC Radio 5 Live as the 3rd best Driving Range in the UK. He is an Advanced Fellow of the PGA, 3 times Coach of the Year runner up, voted the UK’s #1 Instructor in the Best of UK Awards and in 2018 became the first Professional ever to be named in The England Golf Awards Lifetime Achievement Winner. He can be contacted on 0116 2750549 or email@example.com
“As we come out of winter and having played winter rules for several months I see many of you who have got used to scooping the ball off the turf, which cleaning and placing the ball can create. This leads to a huge increase in the club’s loft, so in effect your 6 iron performs like a 9 iron as in the picture below. It also leads to the low point of the swing being moved to before the impact causing fat and thin shots.
Here is a fantastic way to learn the correct hand position: Place an old shaft of an alignment stick under the grip of a short iron and do a few half swings. If you can successfully swing through without the extension hitting your side then you’ve achieved a correct and very powerful impact. However, if it hits you in the side then you’re still scooping and need to keep working on the feeling until the shaft is leaning more towards the target, and boom your distance will rocket!”
THE LEICESTER GOLF CENTRE
In a familiar location to many, the old Oadby Golf Club, situated next door to Leicester Racecourse. The nine hole venue closed its doors back in 2011 and has been lying idle ever since, until Anders purchased the centre from the racecourse back in the spring, and has been busy ever since, bringing the club back to life and adding a few extra things too.
A huge undertaking though which hasn’t been without some hurdles to climb, but Anders and his team of helpers who include family members have been working day and night to ensure that Leicester Golf Centre will be ready to welcome golfers this autumn.
The centre is now open, complete with a 16 bay floodlit range and adjoining teaching bay, a large short game practice area and a new reception area. The range is the first one in The Midlands with 100% Toptracer bays.
The golf course will have a couple of newly designed holes, but will remain as a full length 9 hole course with tee lengths to suit all golfers.
Anders – “We’re building a pay and play facility here for all golfers in the city to enjoy. Everybody is welcome to come and play the course, and hit balls on the range too, and there will be no dress code either.”
“It’s taken a lot of grass cutting to bring the course back, but everything here is pretty much back to how it was before 2011. The tree growth over the years though will surprise a lot of golfers; it looks like a completely different course now.”
Anders mentioned how indebted he is to a number of local people and organisations who have pitched in to help out.
“We’ve had an amazing reaction, several local greenkeepers came over to help, and gave us their free time. The racecourse have been fantastic too, donating us some greens equipment, we’ve been so humbled by the help we’ve received.”
The driving range is now fully open with the course to follow this spring and a new large sized short game area under construction too. This is just the beginning; much more will be coming to Leicester Golf Centre.