FROM QUEENS TO GREENS

RECOGNITIONS
 
  • "Teacher of the Year 2012" Middle Atlantic PGA

  • "No. 1 Teacher in Virginia", Best Teachers in State List 2015-2016 &  2017-2018 Golf Digest

  • "Best Young Teachers in America" Top 40 under 40, 2012-Present Golf Digest

  • "Top Golf Pro" Washingtonian Magazine 2011

  • "Top 50 Kids Teachers, Honorable Mention"  U.S. Kids Golf 2010, 2012, 2014

CERTIFICATIONS & EDUCATION
  • PGA Certified in Golf Instruction

  • Titleist Performance Institute Certified Golf Fitness Instructor

  • AimPoint Green Reading Certified Instructor

  • FlowMotion Golf Certified

  • Lynn Blake Certified

  • BioSwing Dynamics Seminar

  • James Madison University, B.S. Business Marketing  '02

  • JMU Women's Golf Team Scholarship '98-'02

AFFILIATIONS & SERVICE
  • Elected PGA Class A Member, September 2006

  • Proponent Group Member since 2009

  • Cobra Puma Golf Advisory Board Member, Elite Staff Member since 2015

  • Golf Channel Academy Lead Coach 2015

  • Volunteer Instructor for First Tee, Paul Berry Golf, 2006- 2011

  • Disabled Sports USA/ Wounded Warrior Project – Volunteer Golf Instructor 2007-2014

  • Education Committee for PGA Middle-Atlantic Section 2013-Present

  • PGA President’s Council 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010

 

 

ERIKA'S STORY

I was born and raised in Jackson Heights, New York (a.k.a. Queens).  I lived one block from the 7-Train. I could see the Empire State building from my black-topped roof, my six-story apartment building was in walking distance from LaGuardia Airport, and the closest thing to green space was the St. Joan of Arc School’s L-shaped parking lot that served as my bike route, roller-rink, tennis court and jungle-gym. No one in my family played golf.  My Dad is a Russian immigrant from Venezuela who became a top Executive Chef in New York. My Mom was raised by a single mother in Bridgeport Connecticut and did not have the means to pursue sports or activities growing up.  I was a first-generation city girl whose chances of ever being exposed to golf were slim-to-none.

 

Five subway stops away, we stumbled on "Pitch & Putt" in Flushing Meadows Park. I was eight years old and my adventurous parents and I — an only child —  decided on a whim to try our hand at golf.  The three of us spent two years playing in the shadow of Shea Stadium before ever stepping foot on a "real" course. When we did, we were hooked for good.

 

Self taught primarily until age 15, I played and won junior golf events locally and regionally.  As luck would have it,  I met an amazing PGA Professional named Frank Darby whose encouragement and mentorship helped me earn a college golf scholarship to James Madison.  I graduated in 2002 with a B.S. in Marketing, a continued passion for golf, and a strong desire to work in the industry.

 

I worked for American Golf Corporation, in management, but along the way I was roped into some teaching by Steve Loesher, PGA Director of Instruction at one of the properties and loved it.  I became a PGA Class A Member in 2006 while working at International Country Club in Fairfax, Virginia. In 2010, I founded the Larkin Golf Learning Community at Stonewall Golf Club in Gainesville, Virginia where business grew, I added staff, earned numerous accolades and even national exposure! 

 

In 2016 I started a new chapter, literally; I became the first ever Director of Instruction at The Club at Creighton Farms in Aldie, Virignia and I wrote my first book, "A True Swing" which was released May 2017!  In 2019 I teamed up with FlowMotion Golf to add even more great ideas and drills to help students unlock their swings and Mental Coach David MacKenzie to offer more ways golfers can improve their performance on the course .   I am looking forward to the addition of a state of the art Learning Center at Creighton in 2020 and the many new "toys" that come with it!  Stay tuned for updates :)

 

With a lot of heart, a little talent and a few kind people along the way, I am excited at how far I've come and where I am going. At 37 years old, I have a lot of goals and time ahead of me to impact the audience I hope to reach... you! 

 

 

Erika  Zwetkow Larkin, PGA

 

© 2016 by LARKIN GOLF

HS Golf Team 1995