The USGA rule book is one of the most quoted and feared books in the game of golf. We all want to play by the rules of golf but we don’t always want to know if we are breaking any rules that result in stroke and distance. (Damn you OB and white stakes). There are however unwritten rules of golf that are not written down but rather passed down. These are the unwritten rules of golf my dad taught me.
Unwritten Rules of Golf #1:
Repair all ball marks you come across on the green. Whether you made them or not, take the time tops them back out. Taking care of ball marks shows a respect for the golf course and the game of golf.
To learn more about ball marks repair, check out the USGA’s article 5 Things every golfer should Know About Ball Marks.
Here’s a quick USGA video to show how it is done.
USGA Rule 16-1(c) says a player “may repair an old hole plug or damage to the putting green caused by the impact of a ball.” I am saying your repair any ball mark you see whether you created it or not.
Unwritten Rules of Golf #2:
Keep pace of play by helping your fellow golfers. Pace of play is one of the top factors in determining the enjoyment of a round of golf. As a foursome, you should work as a team to help the group keep up with the group in front of you. If someone in your foursome is searching for their ball in the rough, go over and give them a hand. Take your shot first if you must but aid in the search. They might return the favor on a future hole.
Unwritten Rules of Golf #3:
Compliment other golfers on their good shots. Call this being neighborly but it is common curtsy. You are not in competition with your foursome (unless you are playing for money then mind games are acceptable). If someone hits a really beauty give them a “Nice shot, Dave.” Keep it simple and keep it positive. Don’t BS them with a fake comment. Be sincere and show them some respect.
Unwritten Rules of Golf #4:
On the 18th green once everyone has putted out, doff your cap and shake hands with every player in your foursome. Thank them for a finedayoy the course. You never know if you might play with them again.
What are some of the unwritten rules of golf you play by?