Creator of Tee It Forward Weighs In

By Barney Adams
September 8, 2011

Barney Adams, the founder of Adams Golf, provided the concept that led to Tee It Forward. 

The recently conducted national golf initiative known as Tee It Forward has attracted interest, enthusiasm, and more than a few comments from golfers nationwide. Barney Adams, the founder of Adams Golf, provided the concept that led to Tee It Forward and has been tracking comments posted by golfers on the Internet about the initiative.  

Here, Adams provides candid responses to some of the more interesting and direct comments made about Tee It Forward: 

Comment: “You are trying to make the game easy, and golf isn’t supposed to be easy.”  

Adams: This is not about easy - it’s about enjoyment. Tee it Forward gives you a chance to play the game, to hit shots into the green that you’ll still mis-hit. And those fairway bunkers you could never hit? Guess what? You’ll have to be a little more careful now!” 

Comment: “I am a 13 handicap. I play at 6,700 yards and can hit every green. I don’t need to move up and I resent the implication.” 

Adams: “I’m an 11 handicap and I can hit the greens from 6,700 as well.  That’s not the point. I try to hit these greens with a hybrid or in some cases a fairway wood. Plus, I’m not hitting high soft shots into the green. I’m trying to hit bullets and fit the ball between greenside hazards. I want to be in a position where I can play golf, play shots. This is a triumph of golf pleasure over ego.” 

Comment: “I pay $100 for a round of golf and I want to see the whole course.”  

Barney Adams: “Thanks for playing! As long as you can keep up the pace and enjoy the game, play from the tips. This initiative is about adding speed and enjoyment by playing from the distance that’s right for the individual golfer.” 

Comment: “I don’t care what you say - I’m not moving up to the white (or red or whatever) tees.”  

Adams: “I agree! This isn’t about the white or pink or chartreuse tees. It’s about setting up a playable course that’s right for you. Many things are involved, such as prevailing winds, fairway slopes, green sizes and more. Flexibility is the key. For example, you could ruin a 145-yard par 3 or a 360-yard par 4 by moving up. So don’t!” 

Comment: “It’s you clubmakers who did this with all your new drivers. With advanced technology we’re hitting the ball 30 yards farther than we used to.”  

Adams: “One of my playing companions made the same comment recently. All I could think of is that he must have been really frustrated in the past, because with those extra 30 yards he still only hits it about 220 now.” 

Comment: “Mr. Adams, you are a male sexist trying to impose a 4,600-yard course on women golfers. It is insulting.” 

Adams: “For women, a 4,600-yard course puts their average tee shots where they have an opportunity to enjoy the game more. If that’s sexist, then I plead guilty.” 


Comment: “You obviously don’t play for money. Harry hits it 30 yards past me and you want to move him up. Why don’t I just give him the money?” 

Adams: Actually I do make the occasional wager and play with more than one Harry who hits it 30 yards past me. The fact is he’s going to be 30 yards longer from whatever tees we play. From the back tees when he hits a 5- or a 7-iron into the green and I’m hitting a 3 or a 4, he has a big advantage. But move up and he’s now hitting a 9-iron or even a wedge, but I’m hitting a 7-iron or even an 8-iron. Now I like my chances better.   

Furthermore on some of those holes I get a stroke. Now I really like my chances better. Remember that on tour when the longest hitters play with the shorter guys they still play the same tees. The shorter guys are still in a position to play the game and that’s the principle here. 


For more information on Tee it Forward, visit and click on the Tee It Forward icon. 



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