Meet Karen Furtado, the new President of the Executive Women’s Golf Association Board of Directors, and the organization’s chief volunteer leader. With nearly 20,000 members in over 120 Chapters, the EWGA is the proven industry leader in getting women engaged in the game of golf.
Karen Furtado, is a true testament to the organization’s success in attracting women into the game of golf. A 15 year member of the 16 year old EWGA, Karen has experienced first-hand the benefits of organized play activities, championship competition, networking and game improvement programs. As a member of the Southern New Hampshire Chapter she was a Chapter board member, then moved into a Regional Director volunteer role in New England before joining the EWGA Board of Directors. Her involvement on the Association Board includes serving a term as the Secretary of the EWGA and the EWGA Foundation as well as President of the EWGA Foundation Board of Directors.
In addition to her EWGA volunteer commitments, Karen also serves as the Vice Chair of the LPGA Foundation as well as working on a number of non-profit initiatives. For more information visit www.ewga.com.
Recently, G had the pleasure of meeting and talking with Karen and learning a bit about her goals as EWGA president as well as how she incorporates golf fitness into her daily life.
THM: Karen, what are your goals and objectives for the EWGA as the new president?
KF: Every five years, the EWGA embarks on renewing our strategic plan. There are many changes within the golf industry and the community which will influence the direction of the organization. As we begin this process, my goal would be to create a growth vision of the future to guide us through the next five years and be well positioned to continue our role as the premier force for women’s golf.
In addition I want to see our organization achieve significant growth of the sport as well as retention of the members we have today. Although this can be a fine balance it is essential that this remain a key focus.
THM: Will you try to instill into your members how golf specific fitness should play a vital role in their game in order to prevent injury and improve their game?
KF: EWGA encourages their membership to be fit for golf. Many of our members for example have a shorted golf season due to weather, so rather than putting their golf and their golf fitness on hold for several months, they pursue off season conditioning. . Many chapters have chiropractors, physical therapists or trainers run clinics on off season golf conditioning programs so all members can better enjoy the season when it comes around.
THM: What has golf fitness done for your golf game?
KF: My golf fitness program has really enabled me to enjoy the game of golf without the pain that would previously accompany a round of golf. When I was younger, I had a number of knee surgeries that make the twisting motions a challenge. My professional jobs are typically desk jobs with a number of miles logged running through the airport with luggage so just jumping into a season of golf takes some preparation.
THM: What does your typical golf fitness routine consist of?
KF: I look at the preparation holistically utilizing a varied regiment of routines to keep all aspects of my fitness in place. The routine includes biking at the gym 2–3 days a week, yoga twice a week, stretching as well as static exercises most days. In addition, I am scheduled for a deep tissue massage every week to keep my muscles receptive to strengthening and stretching, as well as a visit to the Chiropractor weekly. When the golf season arrives I feel well prepared physically to be able to enjoy the game and all the mental challenges that come with it, without being concerned about the physical aspects of the game. I have tried short cuts in the past but they usually do not sustain me for the entire season which causes an impact on the enjoyment of the game.
THM: What do you want people to know about the EWGA?
KF: EWGA is a non-profit nationwide organization considered the largest U.S. amateur golf organization geared toward the schedules of working women. We welcome all women interested in the sport and strive to bring more women into the game.