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Golf: Rules

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The main rule of golf is to play fair. Even on the back cover of the rule book it states to 1) play the course as you find it 2) play the course as it lies and 3) if you can't do either, do what is fair. So fairness is a key to golf. There will be times when playing golf that you are tempted to cheat. Standing out in the woods and your ball is right behind a tree, the temptation to kick the ball over a few feet to get a good shot. Don't do it! Golf is a game of etiquette and conscience. The game will be more rewarding if you always play by the rules and play fair.

The golf flag and green
Photo by Ducksters

When starting to play a round of golf, it's always a good idea to read the local rules on the scorecard. These will give you guidelines that are specific to that course.

The official rules of golf in the US are governed by the United States Golf Association (USGA), but here are some basic rules to keep in mind when playing golf:

Two soldiers playing golf about to putt
Source: US Army

In addition to the rules of golf, golfers also need to adhere to the etiquette of golf. Fixing divots, not hitting into other players for safety, yelling "fore" if you do, being quiet while a golfer is hitting the ball, and playing at a good rate are just a few rules of the etiquette of golf that make the game more enjoyable for everyone.

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