Golf Magazine

Tips to Speed Up a Slow Round of Golf

By Golfforbeginners
Tips to Speed Up a Slow Round of GolfIf the ranger has ever told your golf group to "pick up the pace", or if you are playing with one "turtle" in the foursome, this article might just help keep you on track to a four-hour round.
In golf, there is nothing worse than being stuck behind a group with empty holes ahead of them.
Your choices are slim as to what to do - you can "play through" making the group ahead wait for you to finish or you can drive past, politely letting them know that you are skipping the hole. Neither option is ideal as it throws you off of your game, interrupts your pace and may not allow for an accurate score.
If you or your group is guilty, it can throw off your timing and pace and your round will suffer. Amateurs see this problem occurring on a regular basis but it does happen within the ranks of the PGA Tour pros as well.
A Golf.com poll recently confirmed that there is a pace-of-play problem among top amateur junior golfers. Although measures are starting to be taken within the professional ranks, slow play is harder to control among average players.
Recently, Golf for Beginners offered three tips to speed up slow play on the golf course based on a recent occurrence by a tour pro. Since this hot topic is not going away any time soon, let's start by stating the pace of play rules for our readers and penalties for the infraction.
The R and A states that “The player must play without undue delay...”. The penalty for a breach of Rule 6-7 is loss of hole in match play and two strokes in stroke play, and for a repeated offense, disqualification." Depending on the number of times the infraction occurs is directly relevant to the consequences.
In addition, the R and A has come up with a possible way to monitor the infraction at the club level. "Formulate a simple condition whereby the management establishes a time limit that it considers is more than adequate for players to complete the round and/or a certain number of holes (which will vary depending on numbers in groups and form of play). In the circumstances where a group exceeds the prescribed time limit and is out of position on the course, each player in the group is subject to penalty."

Golf for Beginners offers a few tips for those who are personally guilty of slowing down the pace of play. If you are new to the game, start at a forward tee box, count your number of shots and pick up your ball and move it forward if you find yourself slowing the group.
Be considerate and you will still have fun - you will continue to learn no matter where you are on the course.
For better amateurs, the USGA suggests that golfers become, "more efficient with your valuable time, as well as everyone else’s." Make assessments before you get to your ball so you are ready to hit your shot.
Speeding up pace of play will only happen if golfers recognize the gaff and take positive action while maintaining the decorum of the game.
How do you help speed up slow play? Let us know in the comments section of this golf blog and on Twitter @Golf4Beginners.


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