V1 Sports CEO Bryan Finnerty was recently named one of the nine most innovative people in Golf by Golf Inc. magazine. This honor was bestowed upon people driving improvements in sports technology, environmental practices, and facility management. Read the excerpt on Finnerty below or view the full feature here.
Finnerty’s business empire includes an apparel company, a venture capital firm, a sports training center, a news network for youth sports and several other enterprises, but he earns a spot on this year’s list because he’s transformed the landscape of golf instruction. His company, V1 Sports, has changed how golfers learn and how instructors teach.
V1 Sports creates and distributes inexpensive online tools that golfers of all abilities can use to sharpen their skills at their own pace and on their own terms. Using the company’s apps, users can watch pre-recorded lessons, review and analyze the swings of Justin Rose, Bubba Watson and other professional golfers, and, if they desire, get personal training from one of the roughly 15,000 instructors who’ve joined the V1 Sports system.
Like so much of the programming available on the internet, V1 Sports’s do-it-your- self offerings are made to order for 21st century America. V1 Sports reportedly delivers 50,000 lessons a month, and in 2013 Tiger Woods credited the company with helping “so many young golfers these days get so good so fast.”
“To democratize the ability to get instruction and not have to be in front of an instructor, I think that has been a game changer,” Finnerty told Forbes last summer. “Those 15,000 golf pros create content, they curate content, they feed our system and allow a DIYer to come in and say, ‘Let me start where I want, and I’ll find my path.’”
Not surprisingly, V1 Sports use increased during the pandemic, and Finnerty said he believes he’s barely scratched the market’s surface. His data indicates that only 15% of the golf population currently takes lessons, which means there are more than 20 million players in the United States alone who might turn to V1 to improve their games.
He expects to find some of those folks at X-Golf, America’s indoor golf-entertainment venues, where the complete suite of V1 Sports software and practice technologies is being installed.
Michael Jordan, the legendary basketball star, also sees promise in delivering online golf instruction to the masses. Through his Black Cat Ventures, Jordan has taken an equity position in V1 Sports, which will enable Finnerty to broaden his base, deepen his relationships with existing subscribers and maybe even offer lessons in other sports.
Coaches: Start a free 30-day trial of V1 Pro of V1 Pro video analysis and online lesson software by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.