Rules of Golf
The game of golf is played on a course with a club by hitting a ball into a hole. Simple as this may sound, the game of golf goes beyond you just hitting the ball into a hole like every other sport, there are some technicalities involved. As a golfer, you should be conversant with all this to avoid penalties and disqualification.
Here, we look at some of the general rules you should know and follow when you are playing this sport.
Style of Ball Dropping
According to the new golf rules released by the governing body, you can no longer drop your ball from the shoulder height. The shoulder height is the traditional style of dropping the ball. However, it has changed. The new rule stipulates that you are to drop your ball from your knee height.
Where A Drop Ball Must come to Rest
You can continue to drop the ball in relief area, although there have been some modifications to this procedure. Here is one of the changes; If your ball happens to fall a few metres outside of the relief area, then the ball must come to rest.
In golf, your ball will be said to be lost when it cannot be found within the time frame of three minutes. In the old rule, you have five minutes to search for your ball before it is being declared lost. The reason behind this change is because the game of golf is based on promptness and such long break should be avoided.
Accidental Moving of the Ball
The effect of this rule will depend on whether you are on grass and the immediate cause of the ball movement. In a situation where you are finding your ball, and you mistakenly move it as you see it, no penalty will be given so far you can return it to the exact spot that you found it.
Impediments and Movable Obstruction
Loose impediments refer to natural materials like grass, sticks, twig, leaves, that are not attached to the ground. Movable obstructions, unlike the natural obstacle, are artificial agents capable of being moved. They include bench, scorecard, paper bag, damage tee, water bottle, among others. These two items are not seen as areas of challenge by new rules. If your ball moves as a result of moving any of this material, a penalty will not be given. You should just careful replace the ball to its previous position.
Pace of Play
As a general rule, you should not take longer than 40 seconds before you make a stroke. The reason behind this is that golf a game nor to be delayed, and it should be continuously played. All level of promptness is required when playing the game.
There are many other rules guiding the game, some of them are:
- Penalty will not be awarded if your club or the ball accidentally hits you.
- Penalty will not be awarded if your ball hits the flag when you intended to hit it in the hole.
- No replacement or penalty for a ball that accidentally rolls on green putting.
- A relief will be permitted when your ball is below the ground level in a fairway.
- In a situation of double hits, where you hit your ball two times within a stroke, whether intentionally or accidentally, you will have to count the main stroke and a one-stroke penalty will be given.
- When your game enters the bunkers, you should not have contact with the sand when hitting the ball with your club in the bunker. You should not hit the sand in the bunker when you’re doing your practice swing or during your backswing.
- You can replace a ball that is moved by the wind in the putting green. No penalty will be awarded.
- Unlike in the bunker, during practice swings, your club can touch the ground, and you are capable of moving any loose impediments, without a penalty being awarded. A similar thing applies when your ball is in the rough or on the fairway.
- Relief can be taken in the penalty zone only if you are least 95% sure that your ball falls in the penalty zone.
- Repairs can be done on the putting caused by damage from the shoes and spike mark. This is for the maintenance of the golf course.
In conclusion, knowing the rules and regulations of game of golf is important for you as golf pro or beginner. Failure to follow the rules will attract penalties which is why, as a player, you should acquaint yourself with these rules. You should also try to stay up-to-date so you don’t commit an error by applying outdated rules.