Ellie Perks, 14, is a rapidly improving golfer who has dwarfism. She’s a member at Hagley Golf Club in Worcestershire where she’s helping inspire other disabled children to play and enjoy golf. Here’s her story…
It makes me feel independent and it’s a game for all. Anyone can play, it doesn’t matter whether you’re tall or short or in a wheelchair.
How did you get started?
My dad took me to the golf club to try it out, when I was about seven or eight – and I liked it! My handicap is now 21 and I’ve come down from 54 in the last eight months! I’ve been playing a lot of competitions and I won a stableford at our county schools’ championship.
Now you’re helping other people enjoy golf?
When I started, my coach introduced me to the charity, Golf for Disabled Children at Hagley. There’s sessions every Tuesday and Saturday to get people together and give them a chance to try it out.
I’ve been going ever since and now I’m an ambassador and help out at the coaching sessions. It’s good experience because it’s what I want to do as a job and I enjoy thinking of different ways to explain what to do.
How has dwarfism shaped your own golfing experience?
It’s sometimes challenging, but handicaps are a big thing in golf and that’s what makes it a game for everyone. I can outdrive quite a lot of kids I teach, it’s not about height, it’s about timing and the way you set up to the ball.
Sometimes people say ignorant things, like how much further they can hit it than I can. But I just think ‘mate, you need to grow up a bit.’ I don’t take it to heart.
Other people tell me I’m an inspiration and it’s really good to think I’m doing something that makes them feel that.
What’s your golfing dream?
To be a pro!
And to show people that having a disability shouldn’t stop you from doing what you want.