In this video, we take a look at the rules many golfers still get wrong. Golf Monthly’s rules expert Jezz Ellwood picks 10 rules that many golfers don’t know exist. In competition, some of these could lead to penalty shots or even disqualification. In some cases, these rules are there to help you so they are well worth knowing. So if you are planning to play any competitive golf in the hope of getting your handicap down, take a look at the 10 rules golfers still get wrong to make sure simple mistakes don’t end up costing you!

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    48 Replies to “10 RULES GOLFERS (STILL) GET WRONG!”

    1. I played with a pal recently who played his ball into some bushes. He believed that he could take relief from the edge of the bushes rather than from where his ball had landed. My understanding of the rules is that he had 3 options. To place a marker 2 club lengths from his ball and play from within that area, to go back in a line keeping his ball in line with the pin and play from any point along that line, or, to play from where he played his last shot. Sometimes a ball can be more than 2 club lengths within bushes or trees, in which case taking relief as my friend suggested would be most advantageous. Am I correct or is my pal?

    2. David Hodson says:

      I would like to know what a path is in respect of relief. If you land on well trodden grass between a green and the next teeing box would you get relief from that? What defines a path?

    3. Steve says:

      The last one about unplayables — you suggest telling your playing partner to take one. That is 'advice', can't do it.

    4. touristguy87 says:

      seriously find one of Golf Monthlys' videos in the recommended videos list to the right
      click on the 3 vertical dots to the right
      select "don't recommend channel" and do yourself a world of good

    5. touristguy87 says:


      Look, seriously "golfers" are going to get every rule wrong.
      I doubt there's a single rule that everyone who plays golf gets right 100% of the time.
      Sometimes we even get them wrong intentionally BECAUSE WE'RE NOT PLAYING STRICT RULES

    6. touristguy87 says:

      while interesting i find the idea of a series of videos picking 10, 12 or whatever rules out of the PGA rulebook and discussing them to be somewhat more than I want to see, considering that there is a rulebook, it has a lot of rules and there are many options when considering those rules. The video on unplayable lies out of bunkers? Interesting. An abstract list? I'm not going to bite on that one. It's just too clickbaity.

      top 10, top 12, fuck that…that shit is just played-out…probably why I'm just now seeing this 2 year old video

    7. FRL2000 says:

      Why is sand in your path not cosindered a loose impediment? Seems odd. What if it was a leaf or twig?

    8. jo ko says:

      #3, you say that you can keep playing the provisional ball until you arrive at where “you believe” the original ball to be. But if you play the provisional forward of the original, you no longer have the option of playing the original ball. That’s a critical distinction. Regardless of where you believe the original ball to be, if you play forward of that line, you relinquish the option to play the original.

    9. Tim Hewitt says:

      In the US, virtually every club has embraced the local rule 14.6 in order to keep up the pace of play. I'm surprised that the UK has not more widely embraced this one as well.

    10. David Bates says:

      We use the local rule to drop in from out of bounds during social golf with a 2 shot penalty, great idea IMO

    11. I think club golfers break rules every round! Hard to police.

    12. The no. 1 rule that all golfers get wrong relates to an outa date ham and cheese sandwich from the bar, this must be returned to the chair of the greens committee with a covering letter from your Medic or indeed Vet stating lack of flavour and soggy bread were unacceptable to a Five day member and should only be sold to the dreaded green fee ! Yup,dreadful business

    13. Peter McGill says:

      Interesting information. I have Never known a provisional ball to be worse than the one I sprayed out into the shrubbery. When I go into the golf ball manufacturing business, I’m going to call them Provisionals…V1s

    14. With regard to the third rule in the video about hitting more than one provisional, I assume that if you hit, say, 3 provisionals and don't find your original ball, you would be playing your 6th shot next. Is this correct?

    15. The useful grass tellingly rot because bush postsynaptically settle alongside a thundering lier. placid, blushing politician

    16. Paul Casey says:

      But what is the penalty for no 1 mate

    17. Todd Mcleod says:

      Love your channel, I'm trying to improve my golf game by knowing the rules better. I did notice that when you talk about penalties you don't say how much of a penalty, one stoke or two stokes. I think this would help your viewers. Thanks. TODD.

    18. John Taylor says:

      What is the rule regarding provisional ball with regards to a possibility of the first ball being lost in a water penalty area on a par 3.

    19. Would love to see you guys address how to properly take a drop backwards in your line of play. Almost every single golfer I have ever played with misinterprets this rule to their benefit. They go backwards the same way the ball flew into the hazard. As opposed to backwards from the flag to the position of the ball and backwards on that same line.

    20. So it's the advice given that gets penalised. Good luck with enforcing that one.

    21. Rose Aussie says:

      In a recent sudden death playoff a player was given a distance measurement from a friend who was a spectator. Is this considered a rule impingement. It annoyed the other player and she was distracted enough to make a poor shot. Should she have referred it to the referee for a ruling. 🏌️‍♀️🌹

    22. The Canauzie says:

      RULE QUESTION: didn't know what to do – so asking here as a shot in the dark. Yesterday I shanked a shot into the trees, and while chipping out, completely lost my ball. I lost sight of it at the moment of impact cuz leaves and sticks and things went everywhere, i didn't get a full swing, there were branches…..etc….but it was a 1/2 swing chip shot max so i knew it couldn't be far. my mate and i spent a minute looking for it, before suddenly hearing the ball drop to the ground. It had gotten lodged in a bush/tree, and while walking through the branches looking for it, my mate knocked it free and it fell to the ground. it would 100% have been unplayable if we'd found it where it landed, but because he hit the branches he inadvertently dislodged the ball, and it fell to somewhere I could play it. I chipped it out from there, and DID NOT take a penalty for it at the time – we don't take ourselves too seriously, and i ended up winning by 6 strokes anyways……but after the game we were discussing that situation.

      unplayable lie – opponent knocked it free accidentally – i played it from it's new position with no penalty. What's the actual rule on this one?


    23. Simon Leach says:

      #3 If you play a provisional ball and then find your first shot, you are not allowed to play your provisional ball even if you consider your first ball unplayable; the player must proceed under Rule 19. The principle being that you are not permitted a choice of two balls. However, if you don't look, you can declare your first ball not found and play the provisional. But if you have not been clear about your decision and an opponent or fellow competitor finds it, how should you proceed?

    24. What about the new ruling on ready golf where if youn are ready to play and your opponent is not youn can play neven though he is still away being further from the pin?

    25. Ian Godsell says:

      The drive into a red staked lateral water hazard off the tee. What are the options here now?

    26. So what do you do if you got out of bounds??

    27. In regards to taking relief from puddles on the green, does that include if a puddle is in your line? Are you allowed to move your ball to a point where you have a puddle free line on the green??

    28. Rebel07979 says:

      Taking relief from a bridge over the confines of a hazard. Twice iv'e had to tell players its not a free drop. its definately a rule not many players are aware of.

    29. James Endo says:

      Always great videos. Can you clean debris in front of the ball on the fringe? Leaves, twigs, bugs, cigarette butts?

    30. boru says:

      When is not permissible to play a provisional ball?

    31. Sounds like a barrel of laughs…

    32. achillesTWOk says:

      A helpful video that would be better if you also shared the penalties for breaking each of the rules.

    33. If in match play (or any other game) I notice a competitor getting ready to tee the ball ahead of the markers or some such other error, is it illegal to tell him that he's committing an infraction?

    34. Mike Ice says:

      #7, I had no idea

    35. GHKY HNeu says:

      7:49 is morrissey your caddy?? 😀

    36. David Hall says:

      Also, see Rule 1-4 in the USGA rule book. My dad suggested that rule be adopted in the book. He was the Head Professional and Director of Golf at the Santa Ana Country Club in Orange County, Ca. for 25 years and Instructor of Rules and Tournaments at the Golf Academy in Temecula, Ca. Allow me to "brag" about my dad, I'm very proud of him being my father and his professional accomplishments. He was also honored with numerous golf awards. You can find his name by Googling " A History of the Santa Ana Country Club."

      As this gentleman wrote:
      Rule 1-4: Points Not Covered by Rules

      1beardedgolfer / September 8, 2014
      Rule 1-4 is an inevitable rule. It is the catch-all, the umbrella policy, the caulk for all the situations and nuances that aren’t specifically covered by the labyrinth of Rules and Official Decisions.

      And it just might be the most sensible Rule in the entire rule book. Simply put, Rule 1-4 requires golfers to use their honor and common sense to allow an inherent sense of fairness to guide their judgment of abnormal situations not contemplated by the Rules otherwise.

    37. Hi guys, thanks for the video, can I ask for a clarification on Nearest Point of Complete Relief – dropping from a cart path, can the nearest point of complete relief be inside a hazard area eg an area bound by red stakes? If the nearest point could be in a bush can it also be in a hazard area?

    38. Erich Tupper says:

      As a beginner , these rules videos are great! Keep them coming. Quick Q: When taking a provisional off the tee, must I look for my first tee shot, or can I simply say I’m playing my provisional ? Cheers!

    39. Sloe Bone says:

      They tried to simplify the rules, they failed miserably. Nobody knew the old rules, nobody cares about the new ones.

    40. brocky 34 says:

      I'm new and we just play for fun. But what happens when you slice it into another fairway? Can you play it back to yours?

    41. Matt Howard says:

      The OB stroke and distance is a rule that should be nullified for all non-professional events.

    42. Lachlan Ryan says:

      If you hit a provisional but then find your first ball and determine it is unplayable can you then play the provisional or would you have to go back and hit another one off the tee (if that was the option you thought was best rather then a drop)?

    43. Andrew Rubin says:

      Logically, if one can fix a ball divot on the fringe if the mark was made after your ball came to rest; the same should apply to sand that was deposited on the fringe in front of your ball after your ball came to rest (if your companion hit a bunker shot before you had a chance to play)

    44. Iain Mackie says:

      Provisional ball. Many golfers I know think they can play a provisional if they find the first ball and it's unplayable. I think this is Wrong. Provisional balls can only be played as a ball in play if the first ball is LOST or OUT OF BOUNDS. If you play a provisional and you then find your first ball, you have to play the first ball.

    45. Steve Johnny says:

      Do people who play with Neil Tappin have a rule about him not saying things like "That's just a tap-in" when putting? I'd have a very hard time not making puns if I had that surname

    46. Matt Golf says:

      You are playing with a group. Everyone hits their shot on a Par 3 for example. Is it against the rules after everyone hits (no pending provisionals etc.) to share club info then? E.g player 1: I hit a hard 7 I should have probably hit a light 6. Player 2: I had a similar thought and went with the 6.

    47. david green says:

      Hi,I would like to see the rule,where you can now take penalty drop out of bunker,if at all possible.

    48. alydar21 says:

      I have a question regarding the 'teeing area' and the two club lengths of permissible area behind markers. At times I have seen the markers set so near the rear of the mowed tee box that there isn't a two club length choice, but maybe only a foot or two. Most recently this occured at a scramble tourney where the was a substantial prize for a hole-in-one. There was a person assigned to watch all shots that day to deter any false claims for the prize. So this hole was made a long as possible with no regard for the two club length rule. Any ideas?

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