Tiger's effect on the links.

Position:Your Life

Tiger Woods' phenomenal golfing success and buffed-up physique have brought weight-lifting and physical fitness into the realm of professional and competitive golf in addition to putting more feet--and more socioeconomically diverse people--onto the greens, suggests a study from Indiana University, Bloomington.

To detail the "Tiger Woods Effect," Gary Sailes, an associate professor in the Department of Kinesiology, examined data from a variety of segments of the golf industry and conducted a literature review. In addition to lucrative financial gains for Woods, other professional golfers, and the industry as a whole, more golf courses are being built, with a higher proportion open to the public. Ninety percent of the nearly 500 new links built in 2003 were public. Approximately 500 inner city golf programs exist, compared to 85 in 1994. "The private mystique of golf has disappeared," Sailes contends. "Golf has become democratized and affordable"

More adults and youth are playing the game. Prior to Woods' professional golfing debut in 1996, a typical annual increase in new golfers was one percent. It now is five percent. Moreover, the percentage of...

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