Golf is infinitely worthy of discussion. We could talk golf swing forever – the concepts, the nuances, the technical aspects, etc. Or course design – links style, parkland, risk-reward, target golf, etc.
Today, I’d like to talk about the Rules of Golf. One of the things that most attracts me to golf is its purity … its simplicity of concept. Though its nuances are infinite and one of its fascinations … its inherently simple concept is the heart of the game and why it’s so fascinating.
Golf is basically the art of hitting a ball with a stick from a specific area to a hole in the ground. You can’t kick it or throw it … you have to advance it with a golf club.
To give this game a little more definition … you start play from a tee box … and the hole (which is your goal), is on a putting surface. There are many routes to your destination … and many ways to advance the ball. In between the tee box and the green are dangers which are best to be avoided. To steer clear of the danger involves strategy and skill.
And, the same golf course changes everyday depending on the weather. This is a game rooted in reality. It is not played under a dome.
Because it is not a convoluted game and its premise is simple … it’s rules should be simple too.
We’ve already discussed the point of the game – to hit the ball from the tee box, and then again on the golf course, until the ball is in the hole. And it can only be advanced by swinging a golf club.
What other rules are needed? Well, if the ball is lost or unplayable … we need a rule.
What else? Or … why? In an attempt to make golf more fair … more rules ruin the inherent beauty and fairness of the game. Potential bad lies are just as available to everyone … it’s just bad luck to land in one.
Isn’t the point of the game to deal with whatever situation you put yourself into?
That question would lead to a great discussion. And discussing golf is almost as fun as playing it.
GM/Head PGA Professional