Golf is an honorable game that has been rooted since ancient times. It is a unique game with many rules and traditions. And what makes golf more unique than other club-and-ball sports is the golf etiquette. Golf etiquette gives the game its integrity and prestige.
One of the essential things that you need to learn about the sport is etiquette before you start playing golf. Here is the basic knowledge to learn for an enjoyable golf game.
Before the game:
- Leave your bags at the pro shop or outside the clubhouse.
- Be early. Arrive at the golf course at least 30 minutes before the game. This will allow you to do the necessary things before the tee time such as paying, warming up, and practicing.
- Be friendly. Whether you are playing with friends or strangers, shake hands.
- Do not cancel at the last minute. Chances are, your playing partners are already at the golf course getting ready for the game.
- Dress appropriately. Most golf clubs won’t allow you to play if you are not adhering to the required dress code. For men, wear collared polo shirts, long pants made of cotton or knee-length cotton shorts, soft spike golf shoes with ankle-height white socks. For women, you can wear polo-style or a crew-neck top, skirt or skort, golf shoes with white socks. You can also opt for a dress with a collar.
During the game:
- Play silently; this includes your cell phone. Players are concentrating during the game, and unnecessary is a sure way to disturb it. Should you be making an important call, do this a few feet away from the players.
- Maintain a good pace. You can take your time but make sure not to play too slow. Make preparations before the game so you won’t keep other players waiting.
- Pay attention to where you walk and stand. Do not stand behind someone as they putt. Do not walk or stand on the player’s putting line.
- Be respectful at all times. Make sure to repair and replace your divots and pitch marks immediately. If the ball you hit is moving to where there are people, shout “fore” to warn them.
On the tee:
- If it is your first time playing golf, check the scorecards to learn more about the game.
- If you play by the rules, the player who is furthest away from the pin or the hole will be the one to hit first. However, this doesn’t apply to the tee box for each hole.
- Understand the “honor” and “ready golf” system and respect it.
- Do not leave the tee area and check your ball while everyone has not teed off yet.
- Don’t forget to mark your ball for identification and inform your fellow players about it.
- After you have marked your ball, put your putter down at a 90-degree angle with the heel touching your marker.
There is much more golf etiquette that you will get to learn as you play the sport. But the most important thing that you should not forget is to enjoy the game and play safely.