A terrible sign... but way too true.
By Snyper on 8/4/09
Before I start talking about slow play and how irritating it can be, let's talk about how you should handle it. Look, nobody shows up for a round of golf and says, "Man, I hope it takes us five hours to get around today!" But, sometimes that's what happens. When you find yourself in that situation, you have a choice to make. You can either look around and think about how incredibly fortunate you are to be able to spend your day playing golf, or you can choose to moan, complain, curse, yell, and refuse to enjoy yourself. Regardless of your choice, your round is going to continue to be slow. So, I would suggest that you just relax and choose to enjoy the fact that you are on a golf course instead of home mowing the yard, stuck at work, or laying in a hospital bed. If I have to be held up somewhere, let it be on the golf course!
Ok. Nobody likes slow play. So, if everybody hates it, why does it still happen? Who are those guys out there that are taking forever to get through their round? The other question is, are the players the only ones to blame for slow play? My answer is definitely NO! While I do put most of the blame on the players, the courses can certainly do some things to help the situation.
Most guys who play a little slower than normal can be moved along when they are playing with faster players, but not Slowy McSlowster.Let's first look at who the guys are that are responsible for the slow play. I think there are mainly two stereotypes responsible for most slow play. The first is the guy who is anything but a golfer. He and his three buddies are on the links for strictly social purposes. They play golf because it's an 18-hole five-hour party. These guys are pretty terrible golfers who usually don't even bother to keep score, but they do like to count the number of empty beer cans in the cart at the end of the round. The unfortunate thing about this group of slow players is that they are totally ignorant when it comes to the game and its etiquette. The only thing that we can hope is that someone will eventually explain to him the concept of letting other groups play through. So, unless someone else steps in, get comfortable, cause it's going to be a long round of watching some pretty terrible golf in front of you.
The other stereotype that tends to enjoy a slow round is the guy that seems to enjoy everything at a slow pace. Whether he is eating dinner, driving his car, or playing golf, he does it slowly. This guy is the one that frustrates me the most because he is impossible to change. Most guys who play a little slower than normal can be moved along when they are playing with faster players, but not Slowy McSlowster. He's going to take his time no matter what you do to try and quicken the pace of the group. Unlike the party golfers, this guy is well aware of the fact that he should let the group behind him play through, and about half of the time, he does. But the other 50% of these guys are in denial about their slowness and just can't face the pain of letting another group through. I know a certain amount of masculinity is lost every time we are forced to go through this process, but if you aren't going to keep pace, get out of the way!
What is the one thing that slows down the play of a group no matter how fast the golfers are? LOST BALLS!Now, let's look at the course's responsibility in this tragedy. What is the one thing that slows down the play of a group no matter how fast the golfers are? LOST BALLS! So, here's an idea. MOW THE ROUGH! Listen, I'm a purist if there ever was one and I love the idea that you should be punished for missing the fairway. However, 95% of the golfers out there are not going to be upset about the good lies they got in the rough. Heck, they might even be happy about the fact that they didn't lose a ball after missing the fairway by five yards! So, courses, either raise your rates to triple digits to keep high-handicappers away or mow down the rough to a responsible length and keep it there! Another great idea to prevent lost balls is to eliminate blind shots. Why anyone in their right mind would design a public golf course with any blind shots at all is way beyond my comprehension. It serves no purpose except to slow down play as guys ride up to see where they are supposed to aim before they tee off and then spend 20 minutes looking for their ball after they hit, because it obviously didn't go where they were aiming. The sad part is, in most cases, after the course is constructed, it's tough to get rid of the blind shots. So, if your course has some blind shots, make sure to get rid of as much trouble as possible on those holes, and MOW THE ROUGH!
It's sounds nice to say that courses should have rangers to watch out for slow groups, but a good ranger is hard to find. Nobody wants a ranger ruining their round and, unfortunately, that's what most rangers do. They tend to just be old angry guys who ride around and yell at the wrong groups for the wrong things. I've been a ranger, so I can say that. In all the rounds of golf that I have played in my life, I have probably only encountered a hand full of rangers who did their job correctly. It is much more likely that they disrupt you in the middle of a shot, slow you down while they shoot the bull with their friends in the group in front of you, get lost looking for lost balls in the woods, or yell at you for going 75 degrees across the fairway instead of 90. A good ranger is like a good woman, seen but not heard! Sorry ladies, kidding of course.
Courses: MOW THE ROUGH!In conclusion, golf is a slow game that takes a while to play. That's the nature of the beast. If you want to hurry, go to work! Golf courses should be smart about how they maintain their course to keep things moving, but most of the responsibility lies with the players. Hurrying your shots is only going to lead to frustration, bad shots, more lost balls, and even slower play. However, all golfers should do the simple things like being ready to play when it's your turn, getting off the green and to the next tee as quickly as possible, and only spending a reasonable amount of time looking for lost balls in order to keep things moving at an acceptable pace. If you do get stuck behind a slow group, RELAX. Life could be worse.
[ comments ]
I think you're forgetting one other really annoying slow player... the really good golfer who watches too much tv and has a 3 minute "pre-shot routine." Some of the slowest golfers I've ever played with are really good- just super annoying.
And then there's the other side of the coin... Golfers who play too fast? No. Could it be?
I played a round this weekend that took 7 hours. It almost made the entire experience of playing golf miserable. Almost.
@Lerxst - You cannot play golf "too fast", you can play very quickly but what is wrong with that. If it makes you play poorly its your own fault but will it annoy other people on the course? I hope not.
I can get through a 9 hole round in a little over an hour if Im with a buddy and we get to play through the groups ahead of us, if we dont get to play through it can take 2 and a half hours easily. Do we play too fast or do the other people play too slow?
2 more things that add to slow play.
1. pin positions on fast greens. in Texas, we don't have a lot of high rough, but we do have super fast, hard greens and guys that want to put the pins on top of a severe slope making it almost impossible to lag put. you either have to hit the hole, or have your lag putt go 6 to 8 feet past. and with the players trying to emulate tour players by taking their sweet--- time reading greens, it adds way too much time to the round.
2. people who sit there by the greens, after they've holed out, to count their strokes and write down their scores. PLEASE! go to the next tee and do that to allow the group behind you to hit their approach shots! it's down right annoying.
Matt Otskey says:
When I play by myself or with one other guy I play with a lot, we too can also get through nine holes in a little over an hour. HOWEVER, if you are playing a public course, on a day where there are a lot of groups out there, I think that trying to play nine holes in an hour is disrespectful to the other golfers.
Let's face it, who actually enjoys letting another group play through? It is usually pretty annoying. If you were playing in a foursome, on pace for a round in under 4 hours, and a twosome was constantly pushing up on you, wouldn't that annoy you?
I adjust my pace of play. If I walk on to a course by myself in the afternoon, and I know there are a bunch of foursomes ahead of me, I make a conscious effort to slow down my pace. I do this by really focusing on every shot, and reading every putt from every angle. And then when I'm playing with three other guys, I cut down my pre-shot routine dramatically.
Well, I respectfully disagree. I have experienced this on more than one occasion. It's similar to the folks that are drinking without the drinking. I was paired with a guy that would go up to the tee with no practice swing hit the ball(s), and then hit the second shot(s), then hit the putt(s) (without any thought or lining up) and not keep score. It was like aerobic golf! I was almost out of breath by the third hole. On top of that, this person would complain about others being slow! :O
I go by the pace of play on the scorecard, and IGÇÖm usually finished early or on time. I like to enjoy my round, but with tempo that is not in excess either way.
What about the people who take 5 minutes to read their putt? They're usually also the ones who don't start reading their putt until it's their turn to putt.
I can play 18 holes (riding) in about 2 hours, 15 minutes when our course is empty. I have a +2 handicap. My routine is assess the yardage, assess the conditions (wind, lie, uphill/downhill) - this usually takes about 15 seconds. I pull my club, stand behind to get my alignment, take my stance and pull the trigger. I feel like most higher handicaps think too much. With friends that need help, I get them to be more natural and they seem to not have time to put the bad thoughts in their head.
7 hours? Did u have to wait for the rain to go through? I've been stuck in some 5 1/2 hour rounds, but 7 hours is outrageous, thats when all the groups behind the slow play should hit all their balls directly at the slow Ba%45*rds at the same time, there charge down and run over them with their carts, then back up and say "hey, idiots get a lesson! we are playing through!!!"
I wrote a (lengthy) reply about this from the perspective of a slow player in the forums here:
what about the golfer that think they are professional, so they play the back tees, spray left and right. flub on every approach shot, skull most of ther chips/pitches, and 3 putt all the time. i'm not that good, but i know to speed it up when i'm struggling. some people don't care and play on.
i also hate the people behind that think it my groups fault, so they decide to hit into my group. so when we confront them they say we shouldn't be playing so slow. then we say "look at the next tee" and they apologize. idiots. almost been hit twice, morons.
What drive me crazy are the two guys in a cart. One is hitting his ball and the other is just sitting in the cart. Instead of going over to his ball on the other side of the fairway and be getting ready to hit. I know this only takes a minute or two but when its done 20 times in a round it adds up.
It pains me to get behind a group who won't let me play through and there are kids in the group. That's a perfect opportunity to show them how to let people play through and what golf etiquette is all about. Instead, they are breeding a new generation of golf slugs. Would hitting into them be considered Darwinism?
@Stymie: Ugh .. I'm with you there. I must say that that seems to be one of the more common traits among slow players.
A few weeks ago, I got trapped behind a foursome while I was alone (and walking). It was two dads and two sons. For some reason, they decided this hole was cart path only (I looked, it wasn't) and dad's ball was the other side of the fairway. So he walked, leisurely, over to his ball. He examined his lie, and decided that he had the wrong club. He proceeded, with the same pace, back across the fairway to his cart to get a new club (nevermind that the son could have brought it to him). What killed me was that he saw me standing on the tee box the whole time and never let me play through that round.
I like some blind shots, but there needs to be some sort of signaling mechanism to show the group behind it is ok to play. At an old 9 hole muni that I used to play at in college there was a traffic light installed at the tee box. You pressed a button to set it to red when you left the tee, and then when you finished in the landing area (the blind spot) you pressed another marker just off the fairway that would turn the signal to green at the tee letting the group behind you know it was clear to play.
I agree with the rough mowing, keep it lower so we can find our balls, nobody likes losing a ball because they were just off the fairway and have to step on the ball to find it.
Slow play is not always the fault of the group in front of you, so be patient. Hitting into the group or playing quickly and always pressuring the group in front of you may actually work against you. The group in front may have someone who gets a little flustered under pressure and may play slower because of it.
@stymie- couldn't agree more. that is def one of the worst.
after reading many of these post, it seems to me that a major culprit fo slow play are carts. i walk and seem to always be right behind the groups that are riding. maybe carts should be used by those that really need them. i know some players could use the exercise anyways.
@eggdog- carts do seem to be a major problem. Pair your average weekend golfers together and how often will they both be playing from the fairway. Usually one is in the weeds and the other is in the tree on the other side. Maybe we need more single carts to speed up play.
@backquack - Dyker Beach, public course in Brooklyn. Pretty much one of the only mass transit-accessible pulbic courses in NYC. Played 36 that day, and was on the course from 7:30am to 8:30pm.
While I agree with what all are saying we are always going to have a percentage of golfers for whatever reason: rough, lack of etiquette, beer, juniors in the group etc. that play slow. From the perspective of a golf course operator we despise slow play as much as those on the course. We have signs in the carts asking to let faster players through. We seem to be cutting the rough lower each year and we still have slow play at times. I also hope that those of you talking about playing 9 holes in an hour or 18 holes in 2 hours and 15 minutes realize that these times are not realistic at all unless of course the course is empty or near empty. Two hours to play 9 holes or 4 to 4 and a half for 18 is reasonable. However we still get the twosome who played 18 is on the course for 3 and a half hours only to come inside and complain the round took forever beacause they actually saw someone else on the course.
Eric Duquene says:
I think that slow play is sometimes unavoidable especially at muni courses on the weekends. I have never played a round in under 5:15. But I have always been a weekend golfer and always kept up to the group in front of me.
However someone talked about getting hit into. I have a penalty system I go by for that. Do it once... ok honest mistake. Do it a second time and I'm stepping your ball into the turf. Do it a third time and the ball is getting hit back at you.
I am McLovin says:
It's simple. Courses have a pace of play and Marshall's. Marshall's do your job and enforce the policy. Me and my two partners can walk 18 in under 4 hours and never feel rushed....all have handicaps between 15-20 and even with the fast play we are lowering our handicaps all the time.
One of our local courses is trying a Fast-Paced Fridays promotion: www.county.milwaukee.gov/Promotions10295/FastPac
It has gotten good reviews for those that have tried it.
"If golfers sign up for a Fast-Paced Friday but cannot maintain the pace of play, a golf marshall will simply ask them to come back another day and will award them a rain check."
It's usually just a few people that can mess up the whole show. To be diplomatic the Senior Mens Golf Association at Hollytree decided to put a list of tips to speed up play into their directory and on the rule sheet of every tournament. This list got weeded down from about 20 suggestions.
TIPS TO SPEED UP PLAY
1.Play GÇÿready golfGÇÖ any place on the course.
2.Limit the number of practice swings.
3.Turn off your cell phone.
4.If you can, as you wait for someone to hit their approach shot, prepare yourself to hit yours; distance determined, club selected, direction, etc.
5.In GÇÿcart path onlyGÇÖ situations, estimate distance from cart path then take one club more/less (three clubs) to the ball. Bring distance finder, towel, divot sand, etc. with you
6.Do not search (ball hawk) for lost balls unless you are searching for your own ball or the lost ball of someone in your group.
7.When someone is playing from a trap, the person whose ball is on the green and closest to the hole should go to the trap and when the bunker shot is made, rake the trap for them, freeing the other player to set up the next shot/putt.
8.If your putt is first in the hole, tend to the flag and replace it when your groupsGÇÖ last putt is holed.
9.Once you have holed out, you are finished putting, no re-dos or practice putts.
10.Once everyone has putted out, move directly to the next tee box to mark score cards.
Second Ball BIlly is my thorn in the side guy. the guy that takes a second or 3rd shot after a badly hit ball. Weither it be a Tee shot or approach, when they hit a badly hit ball they throw down another ball and hit another one.. Usually just as bad. Then you have to go find 2 balls instead of one and then when they find that ball they get to do the double repeat business all over again.
a big part of the issue in my area is that the courses are so crowded, the tee sheet will be solid full from sunrise to 3-4 many times. when the course is just dead solid full of golfers, there's nowhere to go and everyone slows down the pace
if the entire course just collectively slows down by just a small amount the whole works get gummed up, I have been out on a slow round many times where there is no single group holding things up, it's just collective slowness
if the golfshop spread the tee-times a bit farther apart, that should help.....
@whoever said trying to play fast is disrespectful.
If the course is crowded i dont try to play through or try to rush, but I also dont slow down on purpose. If someone doesnt want to let me play through they dont have to, and if its another group of 2 they can let me and my buddy join their group. I dont try to play fast, I take practice swings/read putts (I dont take 5 minutes to do this though), and have a short preshot routine. I walk pretty quickly and dont stand around and talk on the tee/green. We talk while we walk and while we wait for others to play in front of us.
I also play fast (about 1:30 per nine walking) but there has to be a line. If the group in front of you is waiting for or keeping pace with the group in front of them then there is no reason to try to play through. I usually play solo and rather than sitting on the group's ass in front of me I will hit a couple approach shots and screw around on the green if there is no one behind me. If there is someone behind you group up with them. If it's 4 in front and behind you then your starter sucks.
The 2 people in a cart both waiting for each's shot horks me off. Another thing is people who don't watch their ball off the tee and then head to the wrong spot. Even if it leaks into the woods you can usually find it right away if you mark the exact spot it entered in your head.
7.When someone is playing from a trap, the person whose ball is on the green and closest to the hole should go to the trap and when the bunker shot is made, rake the trap for them, freeing the other player to set up the next shot/putt.
I never thought of that. Great idea.
@ Matt Snyder (author):
Great article, most sensible entry I've seen on the topic in quite a while. And thank you for saying it, rangers/marshals do more harm than good.
The biggest problem I see is people looking for what seems like ages for a ball that is clearly in water, waist high grass, OB, Etc. I understand 5 minutes is the rule, but let's be honest. It's playable or it's gone.
Some courses don't help the problems either. Managing starts better makes for less congestion. If I call and ask for a noon tee time and the course has a 11:54 and a 12:06 and big gaps on both sides, they should at least offer me a time with a bigger gap. I would likely take a tee time +/- 25 mins of my intended start. I just hate being bottlenecked and seeing 3 holes with not a soul on them.
@Ward Unfortunately, research on traffic patterns for cars have proven what you say is true for golf courses. One slowdown can affect a golf course for hours and hours. You could still be affected at 2pm because of a slowdown at 10am. Theoretically, if the course were to continue to work at full capacity 24 hours a day, it would last forever. Check out the graphic after the video on this page trafficwaves.org/trafexp.html. It shows how one slowdown can feed a jam for hours.
Sadly, most of the slow play isn't because of course traffic, but by folks who aren't thinking about others around them. I'm started three weeks ago. I had to let a few folks play through my first round, a few less the second time, played with a group that helped me learn to speed up the third, and played alone again with only having one person having to play through. I was fine until I was slowed up by the greens keeper who made me stop so he could mow, which, like the traffic pattern, backed up the person behind me.
any course i play that pays a ranger to keep play moving is wasting their money,i havent seen a ranger say anything to a slow group in years,even when they were requested to
During my round yesterday I heard a new one that really blew me away: one cranky old retiree I was paired with refused to let a single in a cart play through because "Singles have no rights on the golf course." We were a group of three, with one golfer in a cart, the aforementioned crab walking with a pullcart, and myself, walking. The single kind of caught up to us around the 14th so we picked up the pace a little bit. On the 15th I suggested letting the guy play through or join us and was plumb shocked when my partner defiantly refused. I told him I never heard anything like that before, but didn't really feel like starting an argument with only a couple holes left, so we just carried on playing ready golf. Luckily the golfer behind us seemed to still be having fun even with the wait, I certainly can't say I'd be as patient or cool-headed. Regardless, I've never seen such righteous indignation against singles before and thought it was pretty outrageous.
i think that courses should mark all high grass and wooded areas with at least red stakes, if not white (OB stakes). I hate losing balls, but if I do, I'd like to be able to drop where i lost it, not have to walk back to the tee to reload. On a course you never played before, sometimes you can't tell if high grass is a hazard or not so you can't hit a provisional from the tee if you hit your ball towards the high grass (since the provisional would then be your ball in play in the event you can't find the original ball, instead of being able to drop where it went in).
I don't think anyone has mentioned the main cause of slow play. Many golf courses schedule tee times too close together. The courses I play vary from 7 minutes apart to 10 minutes apart. On the 7 minute courses it is always slow on Saturday mornings. On the one 10 minute course I play I have never had a problem even though they are always completely booked on the weekend. Why are the highways slow during rush hour? Is it because the guy in front of you wants to drive 15 mph? No, it's because there are too many cars on the highway. The same is true on the golf course. Like most people, I hate being rushed by the group behind me and prefer to let them play through. But, if I'm waiting on the group in front of me and that group is waiting on the group in front of them, what's the point. Take note of the interval between tee times next time you play. It makes all the difference in the world.
@Tenesseeboy - agree with you completely, but unfortunately that costs the courses much needed revenue especially on busier weekend days.
10 mins = 6 groups / hour
7 mins = 8 groups / hour
18 holes @ $30 -> $480 / hour in additional revenue
Let's assume peak tee times are from 7 AM until 1 PM - that's 6 hours
Difference for 1 weekend day @$30/18holes -> $2,880/day
That's real money even to a golf course operator and only goes up as green fees increase.
Sadly, I think the majority of golfers (not oobers) are ok with 5-6 hour weekend rounds and that's where the courses are going to make the majority of their money. This discounts the fact that if you're on the course longer you are more likely to purchase food/drinks. As much as the course tries to give you the best experience possible (will keep you coming back) they have to balance that with optimizing their revenue stream.
@BME_Badger - I agree. Golf courses are trying to make money. Nothing wrong with that. It is the good (expensive) courses that have longer intervals between tee times. The 7 minute interval courses I play are municipal course that cost less than $25 on the weekend. The 10 minute interval course I play cost $59. You get what you pay for. If you're playing on a Saturday morning on a golf course that sending foursomes out every 6 minutes, expect it to be slow and bring extra money for refreshments.
My advice is play with people you like and enjoy your time on the course. Use the time you spend waiting, to rag your buddy about the putt he just missed. That's what friends are for.
First, tee times that are too close together. We have a course here that schedules 7 minutes apart and the course is always stacked and a 5 hour round. The only reason I play there is that it is an Arnold Palmer course and they have a PDP program that is very affordable. At courses where the tee times are 9-12 (varied) minutes apart, it moves much more smoothly.
Second, Bad marshalling. When I play courses that tightly monitor pace of play, it is always a good time. But you have to play ready golf.
I agree with the author that there a plenty of things that are worse than spending time on a golf course. I hate the two old men in a cart giving you the hand on the hip stance while they're playing bogey golf up your ass when the course is full. Get some friends or get some exercise and walk. If neither are an option, then get some game. Many of these guys judge the quality of their round based on how fast they play and not on how well they play. They couldn't tell you about a single shot they hit but they could go on for an hour about how there were 3 groups backed up on the long par 3. They could shave 5 strokes a round if they focused more on the game and less on speed of play. If you don't like being on the course, then get all your golf shit together, put it in your car, and drive around the block a few times. Then, come home, sit on the sofa (or do whatever it is that golf is keeping you from) and smile about how you didn't waste your entire Saturday afternoon on the golf course.
Im not even old (at least by my defenition) and I wish I was playing bogey golf. No hand on hip thing though...
@Lerxst- No disrespect to bogey golfers. I was just trying to make the point that the old guys who think they are good roll up on a group of younger players and automatically think we are a bunch of hackers that need to get out of their way. Beginners and higher handicappers don't typically fit the description of the golfer(s) I described above (like you said, you don't have your hand on your hip). I agree with you that there are some people that play too fast (or at least they focus entirely on how fast they play). I'm all for playing quickly but not if it means sacrificing my score in the process.
Carts are the reason for slow play and are a killer to playing ready golf. Instead of going directly to your ball, they drive to one ball, then the next for each shot they take up the fairway. Then park off the green, intstead of walking up to it ready to play. Your really in for along day if it is cart paths only!
Another pet peeve is the guy who can depart with a golf ball. If you cant find immediately, drop one and move on.
Wow - 50 comments. Obviously a hot button topic in the oob community. Slow play does blow, but for those of you more interested in the time the round takes than the score you shoot/enjoyment of the game - checkout this site and start training:
I clicked on one of the tournaments at random and saw the winner shot a 76 in 55 minutes. That's approx 1 stroke every 43 seconds. Crazy!
I usually get stuck behind the guys that cant drive the ball 150 yards off the tee but then sit and wait in the fairway for ten minutes for the group in front to get off the green like they can hit it the remaining 200/300 yards
There is nothing worse than looking at the foursome in front of you with all four players huddled around one ball. Three watch as one player preps and hits the ball and then moves on to the next playerGÇÖs ball and they do the same thing. That is the one thing I have seen that makes me loose my mind!!! I have seen this time and again, they play like they have their own private gallery. Six hours is not out of the question. Ready golf is the key here folks. Everyone should go to their ball and be ready to hit in succession. Watch your cart mates ball but from the position of your ball. It should look like synchronized golf. Those of you who wait and watch each shot before you even locate your own ball should be drawn and quartered. If you do this please stop. Ready golf will allow everyone to have plenty of time to be prepared to make a great shot without breaking the time bank.
Don't forget the slowplay with people in carts. they are the worst. Thay are good targets for the refreshment carts being added to the courses. I was playing alone the other day then came up behind 4 women in carts and they seem to be wondering aimlessly they used the course bathroom then as they were working another hole with all 4 with balls on the green the young ladie shows up with her cart of goodies and those ladies were on that cart like a pack of wolves at the 6th hole.
As a Caddy, i've been out on eight hour rounds. Typically these rounds are the guys who are drinking beers, getting away from the family/work/kids/stress, and don't care they're taking 8 hours.
When I play, on an open course, I can get around in two and a half to three, depending on hitting fairways.
You are either a considerate golfer or your not when it comes to slow play. I was behind a twosome last round and I am waiting to hit my approach shot with them on the green. They putt out, walk back to the cart. Instead of driving off to the next tee, the guy walks to the front the cart gets a rag, wipes his ball, throws it in the cart. Then walks to wipe his club, take a drink etc. all right in front of the green without moving the cart from the front of the green.
edditude- that happened to me also, 4 older women taking 8-9 strokes to reach the 140 yard par three. Then celebrated when they got thier balls on the green.
On the issue of course marshals ... they yell at the 4-some to pick up the pace because they are over a hole behind the single or 2-some in front of them, but say nothing to the 4-some that is a hole-and-a-half behind the 4-some they're following, because someone in the group is friends with the manager. It is also always a joy to be the single stuck behind the 4-some with no one in front of it. But as I try to tell myself every time I start to get steamed by slow play, "A bad day on the course is always better than a good day at work."
I donGÇÖt consider myself a fast golfer; I did just start back playing this year and canGÇÖt believe that some golfers wouldnGÇÖt have the common courtesy to let a faster group play thru. I guess a lot has changed in the last 8 years. I golfed in a foursome about a month ago; if anyone came up on us we always gave them the right of way and play thru. I guess the other good thing is that my days off land thru the week and not the weekend.
Ready Golf to the max. When my buddy and I play, it's like we are playing as two singles. We don't wait for each other (unless our balls are next to each other in the fairway). We each walk directly to our ball. Who's ever ready first hits. If we are far enough apart, sometimes we hit almost simultaneously. Who cares? Or if in a cart, drop one guy off and drive off to the other ball immediately. The first guy has often taken his practice swings and shot by the time the 2nd has gotten to his ball, then begins the walk back toward the cart so the cart doesn't haven't to be driven all the way back to the first spot. (No waiting for a pick up.)
On the green, whoever gets there first and is ready, putts first. If I'm stuck in a greenside bunker and you're already standing on the green, go ahead and putt. I don't care. You play your game and I'll play mine. Obviously, use some common courtesy so as not to disrupt your playing partners game, but otherwise, keep things moving at a singles pace whenever feasible.
What I don't understand is why, when play is all backed up, guys insist on putting out every 12"er and even take extra time to line it up. Unless you are in a tourney, it's a gimme, move on.
Also, if you know your ball went in the woods, unless you see it right away, drop another and move on. 4 guys all searching for a $2 ball for even a minute can really disrupt play behind. And many who do this are playing with 'found' balls they got in the first place while they were screwing up the pace of play searching the woods in a previous round. It's a cheap ball for Christ's sake. Come on!
Park carts as far behind the green as possible (walking carts also), so when you are done putting, you can move off the green and AWAY from the next group immediately. Also, drop your wedge between the pin and the cart so there is only one direction to walk after the final put: AWAY! (Fewer wedges will be lost this way too.)
(Finally) I promise you, if you are behind me, you will not wait for me if I have clear sailing in front of me. I hate when it happens to me and I refuse to do it to someone else. Considerate play means much more than being quiet when someone else hits or walking across someone else's line on the green.
(I've got lot's to say.)
If golfers would play from the proper tees, it would speed things up dramatically. People, especially men, are reluctant to play from the tees from which is reccommended for their handicap. This by itself will slow down play dramatically. The various tees on nicer courses are designed to take certain hazards and carries out of play for the higher handicapper. If the courses and starters would ask for Handicaps and make suggestions to golfers, pace of play should speed up. If a group is struggling from a certain tee, then the marshall owes it to the rest of the golfers on the course to speed them up by making them play from the proper tees. The most frustrating thing in the world is to watch a 20+ handicapper play from the members or pro tees and slow down the whole course.
Remember we are not all good golfers and have just as much right to play golf as you. So when confronted by slow play, don't forget you were a high H/cap once. If you want to play without any slow play hold ups, PLAY when the course is empty and stick to tee off times!
I am not a good player compared to some, but I can finish a round in 3 to 4 hours while walking. No quicker riding. Speed it up people or stay home and watch golf on tv. Another thing that should not be allowed is fivesomes. I encounter two yesterday and neither would let me play through. Very annoying.
I used to play with a guy that was unbelievable. If he's waiting on his approach shot, he rants about how long the group is taking on the green. If he looks back and a group is on the tee waiting, he rants "Oh the pros from Dover want to hit down on us" This wasn't once in a while it was almost every hole. Here's the kicker. One day I'm out with him, this clown is 150 to the green he addresses his shot and his cell phone rings, he stops what he's doing and talks on his phone for no sh**, 3 to 4 min. No concern at all for the "pros from Dover"
Lucky for me him and his 36 handicap moved away.
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