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Which Rules of Golf would you change if you could?

Which Rules of Golf would you change if you could?

Which Rules of Golf would you change if you could?

Golf Chats is a website to encourage discussions on various subjects relating to the game of golf. I am Mel Sole, Director of Instruction of the Mel Sole Golf School and SAPGA Master Professional.  I invite you to enter into a discussion on this or any article on the website.  The input is for the entire subscriber base to learn something new each time!  Please post your comments below.  Keep it clean and tasteful.  We are here to learn from one another!

Which rule of golf would you change?  This has been a question asked over the years, and it looks like the USGA and the R&A are getting together to simplify a complicated process.  I have always felt the stroke, and distance penalty for out of bounds has never made sense. So instead, I feel there should be a one-stroke penalty and drop the ball at the point it went out of bounds, just like a lateral hazard.  Here are a few more from Josh Sens of for you to ponder!

You can’t argue with stupid, but you can complain about it. And in this game we love, there’s plenty of senselessness to go around. Witness the Rules of Golf, an encyclopedic catalog of dos and don ts that often fall beyond the bounds of reason.

For argument’s sake, here’s our take on eight of the stupidest rules of all.

1. The DJ Rule

Which Rules of Golf would you change if you could?

This was such a debacle!

In the official ledger, it’s Rule 18-2. But ever since the 2016 U.S. Open, it’s more widely recognized as that *&%$!!!-ing Dustin Johnson Rule. You know, that nonsensical one under which the eventual tournament winner was slapped with a one-shot penalty for supposedly causing his ball to move a nano-millimeter on the 5th green. Never mind that he clearly didn’t intend to set the ball in motion, or that the micro-movement gave him no discernible advantage. The punishment stood. But we shouldn’t have to stand for it in the future. How about this? Next time around, no harm, no foul. Move the ball back, and play on.

2. No Relief from Sand-Filled Divots

Which Rules of Golf would you change if you could?

Not sure which one is worse.

Let’s see if we understand correctly: if we spray a tee shot off-line and our ball winds up in ground under repair, we’re entitled to relief. But if we smoke one down the middle and it settles in a sand-filled crater left behind by another golfer, we’re doomed to play it as it lies. That ground we landed in was damaged. Someone tried to repair it. Sounds to us like… ground under repair.

3. Penalizing a Player Whose Ball Hits a Flagstick Lying on the Ground

Which Rules of Golf would you change if you could?

The flag should never be laid down on the green.

We’re all for taking personal responsibility, but should it really be our problem if a putt rolls past the pin and rattles against a flagstick that our playing partner set down in the through-line? According to Rule 17-3a, it is. Worse still, it’s punishable with a loss of hole in match-play and a two-stroke penalty in medal play.

4. Dropping the Ball

The words every golfer likes to hear “Free Drop!”

You’d think that hitting a shot into a hazard would be punishment enough. But you’d be wrong. Under the Rules of Golf, the dogged victim then has to go through the tedious ritual known as the drop, which brings other potential rules infractions into play. If the dropped ball moves closer to the hole (as it so often does) twice, the player gets to place it. So why not just allow placement from the start? It would spare the player undue pain, and save the rest of us a lot of time.

To see the rest of the rules that need changing, go here!

Source: Josh Sens


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