Most people do not realize that when you are playing on those green hills on a beautiful Saturday morning there are rules to follow. You can’t just show up, hit some balls into some holes and call it a day. There are rules of golf. There are even long, descriptive, detailed books about these rules. Well, I will make it easy for you. I am giving you the five basic etiquette guidelines to follow when playing golf. Guidelines that veteran players need to brush up on as much as beginners need to know.
Tee Times – Most of the time, you may want to reserve a tee time to arrive at the gold course to play. When you and your golf buddies schedule a tee time, actually show up for the tee time. There is nothing ruder than making an appointment and not sticking to it. If your group misses your tee time, you could lose your spot and have to wait around for another opening. In fact, a good rule of thumb will be to arrive earlier than your scheduled time. This way you can warm up by hitting a few balls at the driving range.
Equipment – Make sure you have your equipment with you. Borrowing clubs is not necessarily frowned upon but you do not want to bother your companions by continuously asking to borrow their clubs. When arriving at the golf course, make sure you have all the clubs you need, not to exceed fourteen. Also, have enough tees and balls with you.
Dress – Check on your golf course’s dress code. Most courses do require certain attire. Khaki shorts and a button up shirt will fit the attire at most courses, but you may want to check just to make sure. Golf shoes and golf gloves are usually up to the player but you should check before arriving empty handed. Be sure to have extra loose bills on you for tipping purposes.
Course – These beautiful courses don’t deserve you coming in and being all rough and rude to it. Follow the rules of the golf cart. Do not drive where you aren’t supposed to, and especially keep them away from greens and hazards. Be sure to repair any divots and ball marks on the green. Never take a divot on a practice swing. And, finally, rake all sand traps to erase footprints and damage to area where your ball was.
Pace Appropriately – Having to wait on people is annoying. Making people wait on you is rude. Watch the game. Be ready for your turn. Wave faster groups around you if you are moving slowly. Keep pace with the group ahead of you. Do not waste too much time looking for a lost ball. If you want to keep to the five minutes allowed, wave groups behind you ahead so you will not hold them up.
Golf can be a fun, relaxing way to spend a morning, afternoon or even a full day. You can enjoy that time either alone or with a group of friends or coworkers. Just remember that golf is a game and just as in most games there are rules to follow. Remember the golden rule? Yeah, keep to that.
SUMMARY: Golf may be fun and relaxing but it has rules. Keep to the rules and the etiquette guidelines to make it enjoyable for yourself as well as all the other players on the course.