This lack of golf course etiquette translates even further to a lack of courtesy within the social structure of the group affecting both the spirit and integrity of the game.
This timely article sent to me (below) struck a nerve at the heart of golf courses and players worldwide. It is with pleasure that I use it as a Spring reminder as a new season of golf is in the air. Enjoy!
Vigilant of Others
Before you tee-off, golf better practices would be to take a moment to look around to make sure that you won’t be obstructing anyone else’s game. Look ahead to make sure no one is in front of you and in the same manner of thinking, be aware of the golfers behind you. Tee times are often flexible on courses, but spending too much time on one hole can disrupt a whole day of careful planning.
Mind the Noise
I always like to equate the golf green to the inside of a library. It has become common courtesy over the years to be as quiet as possible while playing your round. At approach, golfer’s require an immense amount of concentration and focus before they take their shot. Being distracted by loud talking, yelling or laughing can throw off someone’s swing and perhaps lead to a stern talking to from course managers. Also (from GFB), either set your cellphone to vibrate or just plain turn it off!
Smooth the Sand
Launching your golf ball into a sand trap is just a natural part of the game; frustrating indeed, but that is what they are there for. After you take your chip shot, make use of those tiny rakes that are situated around the bunker and smooth out the irregularities you’ve made with your swing and steps as your approached it. It’s common courtesy to leave the sand in the same condition that you found it.
Fill Your Divots
Repairing your divots after a shot is synonymous with good golf etiquette. No golfer wants to be playing a hole only to find themselves tripping and stumbling over someone else’s mess they failed to clean up.
After you take your shot, take the few moments necessary to find your divot and then, replace it. A lot of work goes into the design and maintenance of a golf course. Do you part to keep the course you play on looking great for your future games and the future games of others.
The Player’s Line
The player line is a golf term that signifies the imaginary line between the player’s ball and the hole. If you are on the green and notice that your ball might be in the way of another player’s ball, take a moment to switch it out with a coin or a ball marker as not to get in the way of their game. When the way looks clear, go ahead and replace the marker with your ball and proceed with your game. The rule holds true for shots taken on the putting green and on the rest of the course. Be courteous to and vigilant of those around you!
One final note from Golf for Beginners: Be sure to yell FORE if your golf ball is heading towards another group of golfers! Read more golf tips: USGA: Golf Etiquette 101
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Photo Credit: The Girl Next Door Drinks and Swears: FORE!, Bleacher Report