Picture a football game, a soccer match, a tennis match up or even basketball tournament. What do all of these sports have in common besides extremely impassioned fans? All of these sports make use of some kind of referee. Golf, while still just as much of a sport as the previously mentioned entries, has long gone without the direct oversight of a referee. This is because the game of golf lends itself heavily from the idea of the individual holding themselves accountable for their actions, adherence to the rules and yes, how they treat others before, during and after the game.
The first important rule of golf comes down to the notion of safety. Often times, golf courses schedule specific tee-off times that largely off-set any chances that players will run into one another when playing a round. But for those who play in large groups, waiting your turn seems like an elementary precaution on the outset but very important in practice. More than 13,000 injuries occur each year from golfing related activities. Before you tee off make sure they way is clear and you have adequate room around you. When driving a golf cart, adhere to the speed limits and be observant of those around you.
It goes without saying that golf requires an immense amount of concentration and focus. When a player is about to tee off or swing, it is absolutely imperative that no on be talking or making any sort of loud noise that would impair the golfer's ability to get of a clean shot. Another thing to look out for is how your shadow is being cast. Try not to stand in such a way that your shadow is to the detriment of the golfer at tee.
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Along the lines of scheduling, all golfers playing on a public course that is open to other golfers need to be aware of the pace that they are setting. This by no means rushing through your set, but being aware of the groups in front and behind you. Little things can be done along the way to speed up this process. Form having your golfing bags ready to be pushed along to the next hole in a timely manner to not loitering around a hole that is next in queue to be used by another group or golfer.
Having a golf ball become lost due to a sand trap or nearby shrubbery can be an annoyance for you and your group, but it's important that your missed shot's time delay not be imparted to the group behind you. In the event that a ball becomes lost to one of these hazards, golfers should play an extra ball. In the event that it becomes necessary to retrieve the ball that has become lost, the golfer should alert the group behind them that is okay to share the hole that they are on.
Another important thing to be aware of is the impact you as the golfer make on the course. When teeing off or putting make sure to carefully replace any divots you create in the process. On the same note, tracks made in sand traps should be brushed away to give the next golfers the same experience you had.