In her own words: Erin Menath of Silver Oak Golf Course |

In her own words: Erin Menath of Silver Oak Golf Course

NNBW staff

Northern Nevada Business Weekly: Tell us about Silver Oak Golf Course and your golf academy:

Erin Menath: The par-71 layout is 6,564 yards from the tournament tees. Silver Oak Golf Course is 25 minutes south of Reno and 30 minutes from Lake Tahoe. Dramatic elevation changes on the opening nine holes produce scenic views of the valley. The finishing nine offers a unique contrast to the front as it winds through the Silver Oak master-planned community. Erin Menath Golf Academy at Silver Oak, meanwhile, specializes in student-centered teaching. We focus on practicing strong fundamentals to create golf swings that are repeatable and tailored to the student.

NNBW: What role do you play?

Menath: At Silver Oak, I am responsible for the booking, organizing and billing of all golf tournaments; in addition to tee sheet operations and merchandising of the pro shop. It’s not rare to find me tending bar, heating a golfer’s meal, or creating fliers and advertisements for the course. As the Silver Oak director of instruction and owner of EMGA, I organize lessons, create lesson plans, email/catalog students’ lesson videos and best of all … instruct.

NNBW: How did you get into this?

Menath: As a child, I was interested in team sports such as competitive softball and club volleyball, but you would rarely find me setting foot onto a golf course. However, my parents are both avid golfers, so upon returning to Carson City after living in Phoenix for a few years, I figured I should get in some quality time with them, and why not pick up a golf club? I became addicted; I didn’t set the clubs down for three months, dropping my handicap from a 24 to a 5. Needless to say, I was hooked!

NNBW: What does someone need to succeed in this job?

Menath: An LPGA/PGA teaching professional not only needs to know the golf swing but also possess the capacity to recognize even the most subtle differences in people. Not one student that steps on my lesson tee is the same as the previous; I treat their golf swing as a piece of art. We begin with the fundamentals: figuring out their learning style and checking each student’s physical ability by learning about past injuries, flexibility, etc., to ensure they can get into positions that will ensure swing success. Therefore patience, knowledge of body mechanics (anatomy/physiology) and sports psychology are an absolute necessity. With all that said, you need to love when a student succeeds and do whatever you can to ensure their success on the course.

NNBW: If you could have had any other profession what would it have been? Why wasn’t it your first choice?

Menath: Possibly a travel show host; they just haven’t found me yet! I tried the whole eating bizarre foods thing, but it’s hard to beat Andrew Zimmern.

NNBW: What are some of the important trends you see in the golf business?

Menath: For the last decade, we were seeing a decline in youth playing golf. With a more focused direction through Play Golf America initiatives and SNAG (Starting New At Golf) programs with modified equipment, more children are picking up the game. Golf is a life sport that teaches so many incredible values; we need our children involved.

NNBW: What do you do when you’re not working?

Menath: Mountain bike, road bike, rock climb, travel, cook, drink fabulous wine and try new things.

NNBW: Have any advice for someone who wants to become a golf professional?

Menath: Find a professional in the area that will mentor you through the process; work in a pro shop to understand golf course essentials; and understand that you are here to help others, not work on your own game.

NNBW: What’s the best advice anyone ever gave you?

Menath: “I am glad that I paid so little attention to good advice. Had I abided by it, I might have been saved from some of my most valuable mistakes.” Edna St. Vincent Millay.

NNBW: What are five things you can’t live without?

Menath: Flip flops, laughter, lip balm, JCrew and good food.

NNBW: If you could have one superpower, what would it be and why would you want it?

Menath: Teleporting: I could go to a tropical island everyday, eat at the finest restaurants and see my friends that live oceans away.

NNBW: What does the content of your refrigerator say about you?

Menath: Funny you should ask, because it definitely talks to me every time I open it … “clean me!” But seriously, I would say, that I’m a balanced individual who eats healthy organic food … but can’t get away from my vice, chips and salsa.

The basics:

Name: Erin Menath, LPGA, director of instructor and tournament director at Silver Oak Golf Course and founder/owner of Erin Menath Golf Academy

How long have you been in this job? Five years

How long in the profession? Nine years

Education: LPGA Teaching and Club Professional Program and a student of life

Best book you’ve read? “A Handmaid’s Tale” by Margaret Atwood and “Every Shot Must Have a Purpose” by Pia Nilsson and Lynn Marriott

What’s on your iPod? Everything … but I do appreciate a good polka

The best movie ever? “A League of Their Own”

A spouse and/or animals? Significant other and two crazy cats


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