Archive for the 'Rules of Golf' Category

2019 Golf Rules Update from our Rules Chair

Below is a link to an excellent video on the 20 most important Rules changes for 2019. If you have ANY questions don’t hesitate to e mail me and ask. 

 Pace of play has ben a driving factor for many of these changes so hopefully play days may have shorter rounds for you all.  There is a new Local Rule in 2019 for “Out of Bounds and Lost ball” that the NGGA is highly recommending to be instituted at Clubs where pace of play is a serious problem.

The NCGA itself will be using this Local Rule in some of its tournaments next year.  HOWEVER,  it is up to each club to decide if they want to implement its use for play.  Our Tournament Committee, Bonnie Ladd and Donna Grover, will be looking into this for us.  It however should not be used in Club Championship play.  I have pasted a link below to this also.

Remember, any questions, just ask!

 20 New Rules

New Local Rule, OB Lost Ball


2019 Rules Update – Part 1

These rules take affect on January 1, 2019 – Not prior to that date!  There will be additional posts over the next few weeks.


Ball at rest accidentally moved

There is no longer a penalty if you accidentally moving your ball, or ball marker, when it is on the putting green.  You must however replace your ball where it was before you moved it.

No longer a penalty for moving your ball during a search. The ball must be replaced, but if you don’t know the exact spot you now place the ball on its estimated spot.  The prior rule had you dropping the ball.

Ball in motion

There is no longer a penalty if your ball in motion accidentally hits you or your equipment, your caddie, the person attending the flagstick or a removed or attended flagstick.

Ball struck more than once

There is no longer a penalty if you accidentally hit your ball more than once during a stroke

Embedded ball

You may take relief for an embedded ball anywhere in the “general area” which is the new term for “through the green” but not in the sand.

Dropping a ball

You must now drop the ball straight down at “knee height”, that is the height of your knee when you are in a standing position.  You must not spin or throw the ball, and it must not hit your body or equipment.  If it does, you must redrop the ball

Last one for today, and probably one of the more surprising ones!

Loose impediments in bunkers

You are now allowed to remove loose impediments in bunkers.  Loose impediments are objects such as stones, loose grass, branches, rocks, or leaves.  You are allowed to touch the sand when doing so but you still cannot test the consistency of the sand.



October Rules quiz

Hi Ladies:

Let’s have some fun with a “loose impediments “quiz and see what we know and don’t know.

Our ball is on the fairway surrounded by little pieces of cut grass. We think, “Thank goodness they’ve finally mowed the rough!” We remove them from around the ball, and we also remove one piece that’s stuck on our ball. The ball does not move. Penalty or no penalty?

Answer. No penalty for removing the grass around the ball BUT a one stroke penalty for removing the grass adhering to the ball. Rule 21/2 says that anything “adhering to the ball” is not a loose impediment. The grass is a loose impediment when it’s on the ground, not when it’s on your ball.

Your ball is on the fringe of the green and before you make your next stroke you remove some twigs, leaves, loose soil and sand from around your ball. Penalty or no penalty?

No penalty for removing the twigs and leaves as they are loose impediments.
But a TWO STROKE penalty for removing the loose soil and sand, because here they are not “loose impediments.” You improved your lie, area of intended stance, swing or line of play. Rule 13-2.

Now you’re on the putting green. You mark your ball and, on your line of play, there’s some sand and loose soil. Can you remove them, or will it be another two stroke penalty?

Answer. Here on the putting green sand and loose soils ARE loose impediments so you can remove them. Rule 16-1
Go figure who decided this, and what DO they have against loose soil and sand eh?

Your ball lies on the fairway and a live insect is on your ball, can you remove it?

Yes, because unlike the grass in question #1, it is not considered to be adhering to your ball as it has legs and can walk and therefore is a “loose impediment”. BUT if your ball moves while removing the pesky critter you get a one stroke penalty and have to replace your ball. If your ball moves and you don’t replace it it’s a two stroke penalty.

Same ball, same insect, now in a bunker. Can you remove the insect?

NO. Even though he/she is a loose impediment it is “in the bunker” and it’s forbidden to move loose impediments in a bunker.
However, as it is capable of moving on its own you may wave your hand over it, or blow on it to encourage it to fly away on its own. If you remove the insect with your fingers you will be penalized TWO STROKES under Rule 13-4c.

I hope this helps you.


loose impediments quiz.docx

Match Play Info

Here is the handout that was given to those that attended the rules seminar in Oakdale on Wednesday. I have been asked to forward it to all team members. It is worthwhile reading!

Match Play Rule Presentation.

March Rules quiz, Match play.


Team play is coming up very soon so this month’s Rules quiz is about Match play. Go TEAMS!

I have attached a copy of the quiz and also included it below as some of you have difficulties opening some docs.


March Rules Quiz

Match Play

Your opponent concedes you a short putt in Match play. Instead of picking up your ball you casually slap it toward the hole and miss the putt. According to the Rules you should:
A. Count your score with the conceded putt even though you struck the ball afterwards.
B. Forget the concession and continue to putt out.
C. Penalize yourself one stroke and replay the ball from the original position of the conceded putt.

ANSWER: A. The conceded putt is good. Under Rule 2-4 in Match play, a concession may not be declined or withdrawn. In other words, once a stroke is conceded, it doesn’t matter what the player does afterwards.

In Match play the player who is the furthest out should play first. If your opponent plays out of turn what may you do?

A. Give them a one stroke penalty.

B. Give them a loss of hole penalty.

C. Recall their shot before anyone else has made a shot, or let their shot stand.

ANSWER: C. It is your decision whether to recall their shot or let it stand, but you must do this immediately before any more strokes are made. There is no penalty, Rule 10-1c. (Remember ladies that in some team play systems “Ready golf” IS allowed so check before you play!)

In Stroke play if you play from outside the teeing ground you incur a two stroke penalty and must then play from within the teeing ground. If you do this in Match play what is the penalty?

A. A one stroke penalty.

B. Loss of hole.

C. No penalty.

ANSWER: C. No penalty. Your opponent may ask you to replay your shot from within the teeing ground, or they have the option to let your shot stand without any penalty. If you replay your shot your first shot is canceled. Rule 11-4a.

In Stroke pay if you are unsure of a Rule or procedure you are allowed to play a second ball under Rule 3-3. What are you allowed to do in Match play?

A. You can play a second ball under Rule 3-3

B. You have to make the decision of how to play the one ball.

ANSWER: B. You have to try and resolve the issue with your opponent without delay. If you cannot agree then, before you tee off at the next hole, or if it is the last hole, before all players leave the putting green, you must tell your opponent that at you will ask the Committee for a ruling before you sign your score card. Rule 2-5.

I hope this helps you,

July Rules quiz

Hi Ladies, the July Rules quiz for you to enjoy! Yippee…….

1. Felicity marks the position of her ball on the putting green with her marker and causes her ball to move. What is the penalty?

A. One stroke penalty
B. Two stroke penalty
C. No penalty

2. Helen tees her ball on the teeing ground and while practicing her swing she knocks the ball off the tee. What is her penalty?

A. No penalty
B. One stroke penalty
C. Two stroke penalty

3. Brenda’s ball lands next to a red stake marking the margin of a lateral water hazard. Before she makes her next stroke she removes the stake as it restricts her intended swing. What is her penalty?

A. One stroke penalty
B. Two stroke penalty
C. No penalty

4. Delilah’s ball lands “in bounds” but her swing is restricted by a white out of bounds stake. Before making her next stroke she removes the stake. What is her penalty?

A. No penalty
B. One stroke penalty
C. Two stroke penalty

5. Judy asks her fellow competitor Constance to attend the flagstick. Constance is not quite awake and Judy’s ball hits the flagstick. Who gets the penalty Judy or Constance?

6. Suzie is playing hole #12 at Discovery Bay Country Club and her balls lands on the bridge over the water hazard. She grounds her club on the bridge and hits her ball onto the green. How many penalty strokes does Suzie incur?


1. C. No penalty. Rule 20-1, states if a ball, or ball marker, is accidentally moved in the process of lifting the ball, or marking its position, the ball or marker must be replaced. There is no penalty provided the movement of the ball or marker was directly attributable to the specific act of marking or lifting the ball.

2. A. No penalty. TheDefinition of a “stroke” is the forward movement of the club with the intention of striking at, and moving the ball. As the ball on the teeing ground is not in play until a “stroke” has been made, the ball may be re-teed without penalty, Rule/Decision 18-2/19.

3. C. No penalty. Under the Definition of Water Hazard stakes used to define the margins of a Water Hazard are Obstructions. Red and yellow stakes may be moved without penalty and, if your ball moves due to you moving the stake, there is no penalty but you must replace your ball. Also your ball may be cleaned when you lift it. Rule 24-1

4. C. Two stroke penalty. TheDefinition of Out of Bounds states that objects defining out of bounds are NOT Obstructions, therefore they must not be moved. If a player removes them they breaking Rule 13-2, Improving lie, Area of intended Swing, or Line of Play.

5. Sadly Judy does! She is penalized two strokes as her ball hit the attended flagstick (Rule 17-3 and Decision 17-3/2). Judy then plays the ball where it lies.

6. NONE. You may ground your club on a bridge over a water hazard. Decision 13-4/30. The bridge is an obstruction and NOT “ground in the hazard”.

I hope this helps you.

Ball on the bridge on Hole #12


Problem areas are always a problem and the question about your ball being on the bridge on hole #12 has come up again.

I have attached a photo of the situation to this e mail. Hopefully you all can open it!


The bridge is IN the hazard.

You are ALWAYS allowed to hit from a hazard without penalty.

But……You MAY NOT ground your club in a hazard.

The bridge, although it is deemed to be IN the hazard, is an “obstruction” in the hazard , NOT ‘”ground” in the hazard

Decision/Rule 13-4/30 allows you to touch an “obstruction” in a hazard.

So this is what you may do:

1. You may, without penalty, hit your ball from the bridge and ground your club.

2. You may, with a one stroke penalty, take relief from the bridge using Rule 26, Water Hazards.

As you well know that means:

Hit from where you were before, if from the tee box you may tee your ball up again.

Go back and drop a ball as far as you like, in line with the pin and where your ball last crossed the hazard.

Drop a ball within two club lengths, no closer to the pin, from where your ball last crossed the hazard.

I do not advocate plagiarism but this time I have included here link here to the USGA Rules website that will visually help you.

I hope this helps you,

Roster & Calendar


2019 Roster     (as of 1/14/19)
2019 Calendar (as of 1/14/19)

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