GOLF Magazine has released its biennial list of America’s Top 100 Teachers in America for 2017-2018, and to no surprise, the Pinehurst Golf Academy’s Eric Alpenfels is on it.
The Director of the acclaimed Pinehurst Golf Academy and a Master Golf Professional, Alpenfels has consistently been named among the game’s best instructors throughout his career in teaching and in research. He has been a Top 100 teacher since 2001.
“It’s an honor and humbling to be included on GOLF Magazine’s Top 100 list,” Alpenfels said. “These are some of the finest and most respected instructors in the game today, and I’m proud to be associated with them.”
Since its inception in 1991, GOLF Magazine’s Top Teachers in America ranking has become the industry standard for teaching excellence due to the diligent selection process that GOLF Magazine employs to assemble the list. Joining Alpenfels on the list are many of golf’s best-known coaches and instructors, including Hank Haney (who taught at Pinehurst), Dave Pelz, Rick Smith, Cameron McCormick, Todd Anderson, Michael Breed, Chris Como, Sean Foley and Claude Harmon III.
“Every two years the Credential and Selection committees dedicate a lot of time and research to recognize the golf industry’s best teachers by naming them to our Top 100 list,” said David DeNunzio, Managing Editor for Instruction for GOLF Magazine. “These individuals have been selected because of their commitment to broaden the appeal of golf by helping their students understand and enjoy the game.”
“It’s an honor and humbling to be included on GOLF Magazine’s Top 100 list. These are some of the finest and most respected instructors in the game today, and I’m proud to be associated with them.” -Eric Alpenfels, Director of Pinehurst Golf Academy
Alpenfels is devoted to continuing education in golf, and in partnership with Dr. Bob Christina, the Pinehurst Golf Academy continues to conduct research to pioneer the development of new practice techniques and innovative drills. Alpenfels has been a regular presenter at the World Scientific Congress of Golf at St. Andrews, and in addition to teaching at Pinehurst, he has served as an Adjunct Faculty member for the PGA of America Education Department. In 2013, Alpenfels attained Master Professional status in Teaching and Coaching, becoming one of the first two graduates of the program.
Alpenfels’ additional awards include the 2008 GOLF Magazine’s “Innovators of the Year” and the 2008 “Outstanding Research Award” (shared with Dr. Christina) from the World Scientific Congress of Golf. In 2006, GOLF Magazine was awarded the “National Magazine Award” presented by the American Society of Magazine Editors based on Alpenfels’ research with Dr. Christina.
The Pinehurst Golf Academy offers a unique blend of situational practice and on-course instruction. Students enjoy a round of golf each day, so after working on skills on the practice range, players have the opportunity to transfer what they’ve learned to the golf course – with an instructor.
Candidates for GOLF Magazine’s Top 100 Teachers in America list are selected from nominees submitted by the PGA, LPGA, United States Golf Teachers Federation, top industry executives and GOLF Magazine readers. More than 250 nominations on average are accepted from the country’s 25,000 instruction professionals.
The applications are screened against 15 baseline criteria recommended by the Top 100 Teachers Credentials Committee and are then examined and ranked by a group comprised of 15 active and former Top 100 Teachers. Final recommendations are then made by a separate Selection Committee, comprised of GOLF Magazine’s instruction editors, established Top 100 Teachers and alumni, and invited World Golf Teachers Hall of Fame members. The recommendations of the Selection Committee are submitted to GOLF Magazine for the final decision.
The Top 100 list is the only national golf instructor roster that combines outside academic and PGA Professional peer review. In addition, candidates are judged on their willingness to give back to the game and to the PGA and LPGA through one of the following: apprentice education, member continued education, research or lesson programs.
New members and the complete list will appear in the March 2017 print issue, and online at Golf.com.