Mel Reid this week brought her inspirational golfing story to life in a fascinating web chat with the current England squads and coaches.
The 32-year-old LPGA player became the latest professional to offer insight and advice through an online Q&A hosted by Performance Director Nigel Edwards.
Reid came through the England Golf system and was twice an English Girls champion before making her way to the professional ranks.
A six-time winner of events on the LET, Reid returned to form last year with a third placed finish at the Women’s PGA Championship and was a vice-captain when Europe’s Solheim Cup team edged the USA in a thrilling match at Gleneagles.
Now based in Florida, Reid is a strong advocate for the women’s game and her passion for golf shone through in her frank and honest discussion with an enthralled audience.
Reid said: “I think that it’s important that you leave the game in a better place than you found it.
“Some golfers have foundations or are mentors. I feel that I have a voice and that’s where I can make changes – by being authentically myself.
“It is important to show young girls and guys that the golf game is not old-fashioned.
“I want to show people my story and if that helps people then great.
“My story is a little bit different and it is important for me to fight for things I believe in.
“I’m passionate about it and if I am a role model that’s a huge honour.”
Speaking from the Floridian Club near Jupiter in Florida, Reid revealed the importance of mindset in golf indicating that this was the key difference between a player ranked one or 100 on tour.
She opened up on her fitness regime which has allowed her to become one of the strongest and most athletic players on tour.
Reid also reminisced on her work ethic as a junior which saw her play 45 holes a day and spoke of a desire for young players to develop a natural game rather than become obsessed with the game’s gadgetry and technology from too early an age.
“I was in the England squads at the age of 13 and involved with GB&I at 15. There are friends from those days who remain my best mates,” confessed Reid.
“Some of the fondest memories I have in golf are from my amateur days and people you met became like family.
“It taught me a great deal travelling round the world as a teenager.
“It’s a really cool experience that I was lucky to have.”
Having taken time to rest and reset during lockdown, Reid is now eager to get safely back on tour and is hopeful that the evolution of golf will see respect for the women’s game grow.
She added: “I’d love to see a mixed team event on the PGA Tour.
“I also think golf at the Olympics should be mixed.
“It shouldn’t be every golf event. I don’t feel that would be appropriate.
“But it would be awesome to have some mixed events – the guys and girls would love to play each other.
“I see how much higher the mountain is for girls to climb and I fight for more respect for women athletes across the board.
“Golf is one of the most financially rewarding sports second to tennis, but we still have a long way to go from a respect point of view.”
England squads have enjoyed a number of Q&A sessions with stars such as Matt Wallace, Tommy Fleetwood, Matt Fitzpatrick, Bronte Law, Meg Maclaren, Danny Willett and Chris Wood in recent weeks.
Forthcoming sessions are pencilled in with LET rookie Alice Hewson and former world number one Lee Westwood.