Junior Golf Learning ZONE!
Important Golf Rules

1 You are only allowed 14 clubs in your bag.  Seems like a lot, but count them.  A driver, a couple of woods, a couple of hybrids 5 irons, a sand wedge, a pitching wedge and a putter.  You've hit thirteen already with a basic set up.  What about a fairway wood or a couple of other wedges?  Or even a chipper?  Suddenly 14 is not such a big number, so if you are trying out a club on loan, make sure you don't exceed fourteen on the course.

2 The honour.  This is who is entitled to play first.  Normally it is the person who won the previous hole.  On the fairway it is the person who is furthest away from the hole.

3 Provisional shot.  If you play a shot that looks as though the ball may be lost, a provisional ball may be played from the same place.  If your original ball is found, then that is played, if not, the provisional ball comes into play.

4 Out of bounds.  It is essential that you are aware of where the out of bounds are on a course.  Sometime it is obvious, sometimes not so much.  If you play a ball into out of bounds then you must replay the shot from where the original ball was played at the penalty of one shot.

5 Hazards.  You are not allowed to ground your club (let it touch the ground before playing the ball) if you are in a hazard.  If you are in a bunker, your club cannot touch the sand until you play the ball.  Even resting the club in the sand has a penalty of a shot.

6 Unplayable ball.  It is the player's decision as to when a ball is unplayable.  Rather than try and hack a ball out of an impossible situation and end up making several shots, you can deem the ball to be unplayable and take a penalty drop in three ways.  The first is to drop the ball within two club lengths no nearer the hole.  Secondly, play the ball from you just hit the ball or lastly, draw an line from the hole to your ball and drop the ball anywhere along the line as far back as you would like.

7 Immoveable obstruction.  If your ball lands by an artificial hazard like a sprinkler or marker post, you can take a free drop if the object is impeding your swing or stance.

8 Water hazards.  There are three options if your ball ends up in a water hazard.  The first is to play it.  Not recommended!  Secondly, to play the ball from where it was hit into the water.  Thirdly, to drop the ball two club lengths back on a line from where it entered the water.  You may come across lateral water hazards at the side of a fairway marked with red posts.  You can drop the ball on the far side of the hazard providing you are no nearer the hole.

9 Marking the green.  When you are on the green, you can lift your ball and clean it.  Make sure you mark the point where the ball came to rest.  You can also mark the ball if you are on the line of another player's ball.  If your ball is directly in line with your opponent's ball, you can use the club head of your putter to mark the ball away from the direct line of sight for your opponent.  Be sure to put your ball back where it lay rather than on your mark, otherwise you will be penalised.

10 The flag.  Once your ball is on the putting surface, it cannot touch the flagstick.  YOu can play the ball with the flagstick in, but it must be manned by your opponent or caddy and be removed before the ball hits it.

THese are not all the rules by any means but it is worthwhile getting acquainted with them as soon as you can.  Not only will it stop you being penalised for "cheating", but it can also help your game, particularly if you remember the unplayable ball rule.