Golf Etiquette: What You Need to Know
Golf is a respected sport the world over, viewed as a pastime with a sense of refinement and dignity, not as evident in other sports.
Regardless of how skilled a player you may be, or your social status off the fairway, the basics of golf etiquette assure that all players receive proper respect on the course so that everyone can have the best time possible on the links. There’s no official out there enforcing the rules of play and conduct. It’s up to you personally as a golfer to maintain consideration for the rules of the game and for other players as well. Here are a few basic considerations every golfer should know.
Safety is the main concern pertaining to golf etiquette. After all, you may not intend for your play to cause injury, but sometimes things go awry on a swing. So, make sure your fellow players are an adequate distance away before you take your stroke, lest dirt, pebbles, possibly the ball, and yes, even the club, might hit them. And it goes without saying, if you feel your shot could hit others ahead of you, please wait before hitting. If your shot heads in a direction other than the one you expected and may hit or come close to other golfers, please loudly yell “FORE” to let the possible victims seek cover.
A round of golf is a great opportunity to spend some time with friends, associates, or even business acquaintances. Alas, this area of golf etiquette has gotten a bit trickier with the advent of smartphones, where business or personal calls can creep in. If you do have your phone on you for emergencies, try to keep it from being a distraction to those playing alongside you by silencing the ring tone. If you can, postpone that million-dollar business call until your fellow golfer takes his/her swing. Now that’s really showing consideration!
Keep the fair in fairway by not forgetting a few shots here and there. We understand you are never, ever guilty of breaching this bit of golf etiquette, but we’ve included this tip here for that one guy we have our suspicions about. Plus, if your final total isn’t satisfactory, that just means you’ll have to fine-tune your game, which means more golf. So, in the end, did you really lose?
We don’t want to rush players, but keeping a good pace of play is great golf etiquette for players waiting behind you. That includes making sure you’re ready to play when your turn arrives. Also, if your ball is lost, don’t devote an enormous amount of time, making others wait while you locate its whereabouts. Time to let it go and break out a new ball to keep the game moving.
The Course, of Course
Any one of us can leave a sizable hole in the turf from an errant golf swing, or even a well struck iron-shot. When such a thing occurs, it’s a part of golf etiquette to try and make repairs for any damage incurred. Usually, just replacing the divot or filling the divot with sand will do the job (check the course’s procedures before venturing out). If you’ve spent a few strokes in the bunker, please give the sand a good raking for the next poor soul that meets the same fate. Generally speaking, having consideration for all golfers on the course is the true essence of golf etiquette. Etiquette is only part of the game of golf.
If you’re looking to turn your hobby into a fulfilling golf career, you’ll need to know the ins and outs of the game.
At Keiser University’s College of Golf, we give you the knowledge and training you need to help you succeed in the world of golf. Contact us today.
Updated from blog originally published Feb.9, 2015