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New start-up ‘Fore the Ladies’ aims to introduce more women to the game

January 14, 2020

There’s no doubt about it — golf is an intimidating sport to take up for the first time, especially for women. Acquiring the right equipment and apparel and navigating your way through the pro shop and to the range as a rookie can be incredibly daunting — to say nothing of the challenge of learning how to actually hit the ball.

Making the game more accessible and inviting has been a top grow-the-game initiative for years, and now, there’s a new solution that is making inroads. Fore the Ladies is a new start-up that aims to remove the barriers that commonly keep women away from golf. Events have a cocktail-party vibe and are specifically geared for female beginners. Women can socialize, learn the fundamentals, try new skills with challenge competitions, and shop at women’s golf apparel pop-ups, all for an affordable price in a judgment-free environment.

Founded by Abby Liebenthal, Fore the Ladies was born of Liebenthal’s observation that many of her female friends were interested in learning about the game, but had no idea where to start, and options were limited to nonexistent when it came to finding venues where you could try the game on for size. So, Liebenthal decided to bring the basics of the game to those women, utilizing contacts and partnerships she had acquired through her own work in the golf industry.

Attendees at a Chicago Fore the Ladies event listen to a guest instructor.
Attendees at a Chicago Fore the Ladies event listen to a guest instructor.
Taryn Rosenberg

“After having a strong showing at the first Fore the Ladies event, I found that when you provide an opportunity for women to try the game, they’re going to take it,” Liebenthal says. “So many people don’t know where to start if they weren’t taught how to play at a young age or just want to give it a shot. Whenever I describe Fore the Ladies, I call it a ‘drop-in class to golf.’ I wouldn’t join a cycle or barre studio without taking a class and feeling it out first. I’m trying to bring that mentality to golf. Give a try to see if you like it, and let Fore the Ladies provide the resources and tools to continue. Golf needs to put women at the forefront when trying to host female-focused events, and I’m not sure that has always been the case.”

Fore the Ladies currently has four events planned throughout the country in the coming months: Jan. 26 in Newport, R.I., Jan. 28 in Scottsdale, Ariz., Feb. 12 in Los Angeles and April 5 in Indianapolis, Ind., with more events being added all the time.

Tickets are $25 and include drinks, use of clubs and an hour and a half of professional instruction. Ready to attend, or know someone who would be interested? You can register for any of Fore the Ladies’ upcoming events here.

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