Grateful for the Game, Emmy Martin Shares Her Passion with the Next Generation

This week many people across America will share what they are grateful for, and there is no doubt a few young girls who are just picking up the game of golf will say Symetra Tour rookie Emmy Martin.

Nearly two years ago, Martin was inspired to take action into her own hands and make a difference for girls who might hope to follow in her footsteps in becoming a professional golfer. Through hours of planning and support from fellow golfers, friends and family, she launched Played with Heart Inc. It is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that seeks to equip the next generation of girls with the essentials needed to play the game and bring to light a greater purpose she has found in the sport.

“I’ve learned the value in working diligently with all my heart not only in this game, but in whatever I do. Played with Heart was inspired by Colossians 3:23 which says, ‘Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters.’ My hope is that this next generation may be encouraged to pour their heart into this sport and have the opportunity to experience all it has to offer,” said Martin.

Emmy Martin

September 24, 2020

Before competing as a professional on the “Road to the LPGA,” Martin attended Texas Christian University where she earned 2017 All-Big 12 recognition. Over four years of competing for the Horned Frogs, she learned lessons beyond how to compete at the next level of golf.

“When I think back to my experience as a student-athlete at Texas Christian University, it just sparkles in my mind. It was then that God revealed the impact golf has had on my life, allowing me to see golf in a whole new light. This sport has shaped my life in so many ways,” Martin said. “It has taught me many valuable life lessons, I’ve built lifelong relationships, and it has brought me some of my very best friends. It has taken me to some of the most beautiful places, paid my way to a college education, and it has served as a platform God has given me to glorify Him. I truly wish that every girl had this same opportunity.”

From Indiana all the way to Florida, Martin has made donations to nine different LPGA*USGA Girls Golf locations since she started Played with Heart Inc. In 2020, Martin did not let any obstacles come in the way of her charitable efforts, but rather she was inspired to find new locations to donate to throughout the country. She buckled up for the road on tour and made sure to bring donations with her along the way.

“I donated to the local LPGA*USGA Girls Golf site when I played in the Four Winds Invitational in South Bend, Indiana. The program instructor, Jenny Zimmerman, was so excited to receive the outfit bundles from Played with Heart,” Martin said. “She shared with me that many of the girls she works with do not even own a collared golf shirt. She knows that the girls in her program will be so excited to have a cute golf shirt to wear on the course, rather than having to wear their school uniform shirt. Stories like this are such an inspiration to me. I love hearing how Played with Heart is impacting the future generation.”

Emmy Martin

September 24, 2020

Constantly looking for new ways to collect contributions, this season Martin started leaving a donation bin for other Symetra Tour Members to bring any equipment or attire they might not need. From hats to golf clubs, donations flooded in over the weeks, but several people off the course have also helped her get to where she is today.

“There have been many people who have helped me along the way… too many to name. Laura Diaz connected me with LPGA*USGA Girls Golf which has allowed Played with Heart to impact the girls of these programs. The generous donations from players and others amongst the golf industry have been instrumental in supporting Played with Heart.

“My coach at TCU (Coach Angie Larkin) has had a significant impact on my journey. She made my college experience at TCU so special, on and off the golf course. She coaches with such a competitive fire while caring so deeply for each of her players and who they are becoming in the process. Within her program, she has instilled a mindset of gratitude which was a theme consistently threaded throughout my college career. This mindset really shifted my perspective, showing that regardless of circumstances, we have so much to be grateful for.”

Played With Heart Accepts Donations

Played With Heart accepts monetary donations as well as donations of new/gently used golf apparel/gear including: golf clothing, hats, shoes, towels, gloves, clubs, head covers, balls, etc. To donate golf gear, please contact playedwithheart@gmail.com to coordinate a collection.