Golf statistics

How many people are playing golf in the UK?

Golf is much more than just hitting a ball around a green. The sport demands patience, technique and years of practice.
This isn’t a sport that you should enter into lightly, either. If you are serious about getting into golf, you will need to fork out for lessons, golf clubs and time on the green. And, to protect yourself and your equipment from any incidents, you should also think about getting insured.

Did you know?

  • The odds that an amateur golfer will make a hole in one is 12,500 to 1.
  • The longest recorded drive was 470 metres (or the length of five football pitches) by Michael Hoke Austin.
  • Golf is one of the only sports that has been played on the moon, along with Javelin during the first Lunar Olympics.
  • During these games, the ball was reported to have travelled 4,000 metres – over 8 times the 470 metres world record.

The number of people playing golf

In 2018, there were just shy of 1 million golfers (945,700) in the UK. This is the fewest participants there have been since 2016. In addition, 2018 experienced the greatest decrease in participants, with 3% fewer participants than there were in 2017.

The number of children playing golf

From 2010 to 2018, the 5-10 age group had an average of 0.9% fewer participants than the 11-15 age group every year.

Year 5-10 age group participation 11-15 age group participation
2010/11 4.5% 5.8%
2011/12 5.4% 6.4%
2012/13 5.1% 6.1%
2013/14 4.7% 7.4%
2014/15 4.6% 5.8%
2015/16 6.3% 5.1%
2016/17 4.6% 5.8%
2017/18 4.2% 3.6%
4.9% 5.8%

The years with the greatest number of participants throughout the time period were 2013/2014 for the older group, with 7.4% participation, and 2015/2016 for the younger group, with 6.3% participation.

The Masters Tournament winners

The number of Masters Tournaments won by each golfer from 1934 to 2019 is presented below. The most number of tournaments won by one person is 6 by Jack Nicklaus, closely followed by Tiger Woods with 5 wins. Click over to the table for a more extensive list of players that have won the tournament.

Name Masters won
Jack Nicklaus 6
Tiger Woods 5
Arnold Palmer 4
Jimmy Demaret 3
Sam Snead 3
Gary Player 3
Nick Faldo 3
Phil Mickelson 3
Horton Smith 2
Byron Nelson 2
Ben Hogen 2
Tom Watson 2
Steve Ballesteros 2
Bernhard Langer 2
Ben Crenshaw 2
Jose Maria Olazabal 2
Bubba Watson 2

The best selling golf products

In 2018, the overall revenue from golf equipment and accessories manufacturer Callaway was the highest it’s been in six years. In this year, total revenue was $1.2 billion, which was 50% higher than the 2012 total of $0.8 billion.

Time Woods Irons Putters Golf balls Accessories and other Total
2012 $198 $169 $93 $139 $238 $837
2013 $250 $179 $88 $131 $195 $843
2014 $270 $200 $81 $137 $199 $887
2015 $222 $206 $86 $143 $187 $844
2016 $216 $279 $88 $152 $137 $872
2017 $308 $251 $85 $163 $243 $1,050
2018 $304 $316 $96 $196 $330 $1,242
This rise in revenue in 2018 can be attributed mostly to the increase in revenue from the “woods” and the “accessories and other” categories, which make up 24% and 27% of total revenue, respectively.


Office for National Statistics
Callaway Golf Company
Masters Tournament
Sport England

Click here for more research. For all media enquiries, please contact:

Matt Mckenna
UK communications manager
T: +44 20 8191 8806

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