You’ve read the books, hit a bucket or two of balls and even took a quick lesson from your friends or family members but are you good enough to go out onto the greens and play your first round? As a beginner, the game of golf can be daunting; from the lingo to the rules to the actual getting the ball into the hole, the game of golf is a game that requires constant work and effort. Many say that golf is a mental game, and we couldn’t agree more. With the right perspective and drive, golf can be fun and you can be ready to hit the links in no time. Women on Course put together a list that beginner golfers should be aware of, here are the basics: Your Responsibilities to the Course: Golf courses are designed to provide serious golfers with challenge and excitement but most of all they wish to provide an overall enjoyable experience. In return, courses expect a certain level of accountability amongst their guests. Player’s responsibilities are:
- Maintain the conditions of the course
- Arrive ten minutes early before your tee time
- Dress in club approved attire (varies amongst different clubs)
- Depending on the club, raking sand traps is your responsibility
- Protect the putting green surface and always replace the flag
Your Responsibilities to Fellow Golfers: You’re expected to respect the perimeters of the golf course, so respecting your fellow golfers goes without saying. However, you should be aware what other fellow golfers would expect from you while out on the links. Keep in mind that everyone is different, which means that many individuals have different preferences when it comes to noise level and styles of play. The Women on Course writers put together a few rules to follow when thinking of your fellow golfers:
- It is respectful to remain quiet during another player’s turn
- Be ready when it is your turn. Remember that there are people behind you!
- Limit your pre-shot routine to 20 seconds.
- Be self-sufficient. This is not the place to work on your swing or to ask constant basic questions. Those questions are most appropriate for the driving range or with your mentor/coach.
- Be mindful not to step on a player’s line while on the putting green and make sure to mark your ball properly.
Your Responsibilities to Yourself: You will get out what you put in. What does that mean? What you put into getting better is what you get out of it. Many beginners get down on themselves when they transition from the driving range to a full game of golf (with the switching clubs, trying different courses and playing against another person) but don’t let those things stop you. Practice makes better. Take lessons from golf experts and work towards making your game better.
- Master the basics of each golf technique (check out our instructional section and coaching videos)
- Get to know each of your clubs; meaning know how far each one goes and what you prefer.
- Get involved in a local club and participate in local events. This is the best way to help grow your game and to get involved in the larger network of amateur golfers. If you are in the southern California area, you can look up local clubs by using the WSCGA Directory.