Golf Rules and Etiquette For Dummies
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In the UK, follow these essential golf rules on the green – they’re pretty simple once you’ve got into the swing of things (sorry, the opportunity was irresistible).

  • Rule 1: You must play the same ball from the teeing ground into the hole. Change only when the rules allow.

  • Rule 2: You must hole out on each hole. If you don’t, you don’t have a score and are thus disqualified.

  • Rule 3: You are responsible for playing your own ball. Put an identification mark on it.

  • Rule 4: You must play the ball as it lies.

  • Rule 5: When your ball is in a hazard, whether a bunker or a water hazard, you cannot touch the ground or water in the hazard with your club before impact.

  • Rule 6: You cannot improve the line of a putt by repairing marks made by the spikes on a player’s shoes.

  • Rule 7: Obstructions are anything artificial. Some obstructions are moveable. Others aren’t, so you must drop your ball within one club length of your nearest point of relief.

  • Rule 8: If your ball is lost in a water hazard, you can drop another ball behind the hazard, keeping the point where the ball last crossed the hazard between you and the hole.

  • Rule 9: If you lose your ball anywhere else other than in a hazard, return to where you hit your previous shot and hit another – with a one-stroke penalty.

  • Rule 10: If your ball is unplayable, you have three options:

    • Play from where you hit your last shot.

    • Drop the ball within two club lengths of where your ball is now.

    • Keep the point where the ball is between you and the hole and drop your ball on that line. You can go back as far as you want.

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