The PGA of New Zealand caught up with PGA member Brydie Hodge, who shared a colourful insight into her involvement in golf and her love of being a PGA member.
Name: Brydie Hodge
Age: 26
Position: Trainee Professional at Manawatu Golf Club.
When did you first begin your involvement with golf?
I began my journey at a small 9-hole golf course called Hokio Sands near Levin at the age of four, and in 2002 I entered my first scorecard at the age of five to try and get myself a handicap. My older brother Tyler would go along with dad and his mates to golf, and I would ride along on dad’s Keen Kart trundler.
How did that exposure evolve into a PGA career?
I grew up living and breathing golf. One of the older juniors at the club was Andrew Henare, who Tyler and I looked up to, and now he is one of the top coaches in the country. Being a part of a golfing community like what we had at Hokio Sands allowed us to play, learn, and grow from such a young age and fall in love with the game. Having such a positive and encouraging start to our golfing journey, it is no wonder why Tyler is now a playing golf professional, and I am a teaching professional.
When will you qualify as a PGA professional?
Hopefully at the end of 2023
What has been your career path to date?
After 20 years of playing - starting from little Hokio Sands to Levin Golf Club and playing club pennants, junior and senior rep’s and representing NZ junior’s in Australia - I made the decision to begin my PGA career at Manawatu Golf Club just after the Covid lockdown. I am currently in my third and final year of the traineeship.
Where has that career path taken you to – either around New Zealand or internationally?
I have been lucky enough to travel all around NZ playing a range of district and New Zealand events, Australia, and America where I studied for a year on a golf scholarship at Tulsa University.
What skills and qualifications have you acquired along the way, and how have they enhanced your service delivery?
Through the PGA traineeship education, I have learnt a massive range of skills that allow me to become the best version of myself whether it be coaching, running events, club repairs, or interacting with all our members and guests. I have been upskilled in first aid training and golf rules which allows me to help anyone. I look forward to graduating at the end of this year and continuing to use the qualifications to best help all golfers.
What attracted you to your current role?
The people make the place. Manawatu Golf Club has a great facility and club environment, but it’s the people at the club who make the place. Working with hardworking, dedicated yet fun colleagues makes you strive to do your very best and excited to come to work each week.
Where do you see a PGA career taking you?
I’m not sure yet, maybe some travel? I’m excited to see what the future has in store for me.
If you could work anywhere as a PGA professional, where would that be, and why?
If I could dream big it would be somewhere prestigious like Augusta or St Andrews.
Have you had any mentors during your career or people who you have been able to lean on for advice? If so, who and what have you learned from them?
Stephen Wood – my amateur golf coach. Although I haven’t been coached by Stephen in many years, he was hugely influential in my golf development.
Alan Hyatt – my trainee member. He has supported me through my transition into the golfing industry and guided me through the last few years.
Andre White - a colleague who has supported me through not just my role here at Manawatu, but I can also go to for any advice needed. Andre has over 30 years of industry knowledge and has been able to pass on many of his tips and tricks to me.
Tim Berry – another colleague. Tim was in his final year of his traineeship when I begun mine and the person I worked with the most at Manawatu. I would count Tim as one of my closest friends as he has encouraged and bolstered me throughout the last three or so years.