Golf is a gentleman’s game with unsaid etiquette rules guiding the interactions between players. It is possible to win a game of golf and receive cold nods, while the guy behind you gets wild applause. It all comes to good manners on the golf course. Here are some etiquette mistakes you should avoid, for a smooth game.
Mobile phone distractions
Mobile phones are nowadays allowed on golf courses. But you should use your mobile in a way that does not distract other players. A ringing mobile could be a distraction when another player is concentrating on the backswing. It is also time for a game, so no one wants to hear why your laundry delivery has not been made.
Not repairing the turf you damage
You can make ball marks using a small knife or a tee. Remember to replace divots or spread some seed-mix. Make a point of properly raking bunkers after your shot. The rake should not leave deep furrows but rather a smooth surface.
Slowing other people down too much
It is understandable that not all people can play at the same pace. However, slowing other players unnecessarily such that the group behind catches can spoil the game. If you are the slowest player, encourage the other players to be fast so that you are always ahead of the group behind. Do not spend too much time searching for a lost ball. Spend a maximum of 5 minutes looking for a ball.
Not tracking your ball
It is downright unprofessional and punishable mixing up balls. You lose the hole in a match play and incur a two-stroke penalty in a stroke play. You will also have to go back and play the correct ball, otherwise play on under the rules of a ball in the hazard or a lost ball. Ignoring this and teeing off at the next hole will get you disqualified. Always mark your ball uniquely using an indelible marker to identify it easier in the bushes.
Stepping onto another player’s line
Stepping between a player and the whole while on the green is just rude. While it makes no difference to the player’s play, it is bad manners. Inspect other player’s positions before stepping on the green.
Losing your temper
Different players have different skills. Just because your shots are off-target is not an excuse to go cursing and making theatrics. Your bad temper can become infectious. Remember it is a game after all. You are there to enjoy it and improve your skills.