Mind your manners on the golf course, please!

Donate Today Buy This Video

While the game of golf began as a “gentleman’s game” long ago, in recent decades it’s grown and evolved worldwide to welcome individuals representing many different demographics and abilities. However, the one essential aspect that grounds the game in its longstanding tradition is its dependence on etiquette.

By definition, etiquette is a set of rules that governs how individuals interact with one another, and within the golf realm there are some very specific “manners” that are expected to be practiced throughout the course of playing a round. According to Naperbrook Golf Course’s Head Golf Pro Tim Dunn, golfer etiquette essentially is what is commonly referred to as sportsmanship across many other sports, and it’s what helps keep the game enjoyable and fair.

Here are five key golf course rules to start with, but recognize that there are many more to grasp before you show up for your next lesson or round:

Be timely for your reservation

Most courses recommend that you arrive a bit early for your tee time. This provides golfers with ample opportunity to check in, get your cart, practice your swing, etc.

Maintain pace of play

This means keeping an eye on the speed at which your group is playing in addition to being aware of the pace of groups ahead and behind you. Basically, you should be ready to play when it’s your turn. If you notice that your group is a bit slow, let the golfers behind you play through.

Don’t spend too much time trying to locate lost balls

If you lose a ball (which will happen), limit your search to no more than 3 minutes. Otherwise, a longer search can end up impacting the pace of play.

Avoid traversing “through lines”

While you wouldn’t want to walk between a golfer and the hole they’re playing, you also don’t want to walk through the imaginary line that continues two to three feet past the hole. Walking across this line is disruptive and distracts the player while potentially interrupting the momentum of the game.

Replace and repair divots

Divots happen in golf. It’s what you do with them that counts. Repairing/replacing divots shows respect to the course by helping preserve its appearance in addition to keeping players safe by ensuring that the ground is as even as possible. A repair can be as simple as retrieving the tuft of grass and carefully tamping it back down on the hole. Some courses also provide a sand/seed mix that can be shaken in the hole before replacing the divot to help the turf germinate.

The PGA is a great resource for a more comprehensive overview of golf etiquette. Check out this article on their website for additional information: https://www.pga.com/story/golf-for-beginners-golf-etiquette-rules-and-glossary.

Whether you’re interested in playing golf and/or learning the game of golf, the Naperville Park District’s two 18-hole courses (Naperbrook and Springbrook) are great places to enjoy. More information can be found at www.golfnaperville.org.

630 Naperville welcomed the Naperville Park District’s Sameera Luthman, Director of Marketing and Communications and Naperbrook Golf Course’s Head Golf Pro Tim Dunn, for this edition of Park It.