New proposed rules to speed up golf

08 March 2017

Do golfers frustrate you when they take ages looking for their golf ball amongst the undergrowth following a wayward shot?

Things are looking to change with arguably the biggest shake up in the rules of golf for a long time.

It is being proposed that you are only allowed 3 minutes to look for your lost ball, currently this is set at 5 minutes and players only have 40 seconds to hit a shot.

They are proposing to relax the dropping procedure currently you have to drop it from shoulder height: The only requirement is that you hold the ball above the ground without it touching any growing thing or other natural or artificial object, and let it go so that it falls through the air before coming to rest; to avoid any doubt, it is recommended that the ball be dropped from at least one inch above the ground or any growing thing or object.

Other rule changes that are being considered are being able to putt on the green with the flag still in the hole, removing any penalty for accidentally moving your ball and having a fixed distance when measuring where a ball should be dropped from. They are also looking to allow you to repair any spike or animal damage on the greens.

The change are being proposed by the two governing bodies, the Royal and Ancient and United States Golf Association, these rules will be drawn up into a new rulebook that will be designed / written from a players point of view.

Following these proposed rules changes they have set a six month period for golfers to feedback and respond to the proposed changes with the aim to launch these new rules in 2019 rule book.