How an international celebrity coach and golf expert kick-started his big trip to the island that inspired his life

Written by Staff Writer Federico Alba, the best-selling author of “The Truth About Celebrity Golf” and co-author of “Celebrity Golf: Secrets, Secrets and Secrets.” Former tour professional and “Celebrity Golf” expert Federico Alba is…

How an international celebrity coach and golf expert kick-started his big trip to the island that inspired his life

Written by Staff Writer

Federico Alba, the best-selling author of “The Truth About Celebrity Golf” and co-author of “Celebrity Golf: Secrets, Secrets and Secrets.”

Former tour professional and “Celebrity Golf” expert Federico Alba is teaching golf at Sea Island Golf Club, in Sea Island, Georgia. While on the coast of Sicily, Alba revealed more about his visit and experiences.

“I’m here in my home region,” Alba told CNN from his hotel in the Sicilian resort town of Messina, just outside of Palermo.

“I have a lot of memories of this place, and to visit here was my most favorite childhood memory because we were always on these beaches… it was the one beach we used to play on all the time.

“I remember how we stayed there, we never went to a hotel, just to hang out and play — especially on the beach. The seafood, the hotel industry and the food is all there. It’s the inspiration for my life and what I’ve achieved so far,” he said.

Lighthouses

Alba’s works include coaching celebrities such as golfer Phil Mickelson and musician Ricky Martin. He was also a writer and editor on the golf show “To Catch a Golfer,” a consulting editor on the Spanish golf lifestyle book “On the Range” and co-author of the children’s book “Golf for Kids.”

“When I first started out on my own, it wasn’t that you’re going to golf,” Alba says. “I had this passion for writing, I wanted to combine the two and I quickly realized that I wasn’t a writer, I wasn’t an editor, I was writing for other people and now I’m doing everything I can to get it done myself.

“It was around 1992 that I was introduced to the business world, I sold my company and then the ‘Golf for Kids’ book was a stepping stone for me,” he said.

After writing that book, Alba got fed up with the idea of teaching and began to observe the lives of golfers from all walks of life.

“I often was accused of being too tame because I didn’t make all my star students play golf, I played golf with them. I thought it was not enough to just walk in and see the golf game, I had to really observe what life and golf was all about,” he says.

“I realized that a lot of what you need to learn comes from the people around you because you see so many things, they enjoy the game but they see a thousand things that you see. Sometimes you don’t have a clue about things that are going on.”

As a result, he created “The Truth About Celebrity Golf,” written with his brother Luis, who passed away in 2011.

“I’m here, I’m teaching here, and I’m living the life of a celebrity athlete and a celebrity golfer for the rest of my life,” says Alba.

Golf do’s and don’ts

“I’ve got lots of good habits that I recommend. Golf as a sport is less important than keeping balance in life,” he says.

“I never go to sleep early, in fact I never go to sleep. But the real secret of golf is to have fun with what you have. I am a great believer in “vailing” — where I learn from what is happening, not because of what I have. And that is why you have to have fun with what you have.”

It’s advice he applies to his own life and profession — and his job as a coach for some of the world’s best golfers.

“Golf as a career is like anything else — you need to study and practice as much as you can. You have to practice because you can’t practise for forever,” says Alba.

Alba also offers some advice to men and women looking to pursue a career in the sport.

“A person must be able to relate to other people, this is the most important thing. You need to have a spirit, a spirit of fun, good energy. I think that’s the most important part,” he says.

“When you start out in golf, it’s usually not because you want to become famous or famous golfer but just to make a living — for you to be able to spend some time with your family. This is the most important thing. If you’ve got this, everything else will come pretty easy.”

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