Golf is a unique sport in that it relies on the players to police themselves when out on the course. It is unlike baseball, which has umpires to call balls and strikes, and basketball, which has referees to whistle fouls and assess appropriate penalties. Golf is a game built on the honor code, where players keep track of their own penalties and the scoring punishments that go along with them. Golf camps for juniors are a great way for young golfers to learn every aspect of golf, from training and mechanics, to rules education and experience on the course. As your son or daughter grows older and develops his or her game, understanding different golf penalties and how to avoid them is important for his or her overall improvement.
Common Golf Penalties
There are a number of penalties that can be charged to a golfer, over the course of a round, which will often lead to additional strokes on the scorecard. Some penalties are exceptionally rare, like the two-stroke penalty handed to Seung-Yul Noh in the second round of a FedEx Cup playoff in 2014 when he took his second shot from a neighboring hole’s green after his initial tee shot went astray. Others, however, are fairly common and happen more often than golfers would like. Take, for instance, the two-stroke penalty you get for hitting another golfer’s ball. While that may seem unthinkable to some, it is likely that you and another person in your foursome could drive the ball to the same relative location. It is important to ensure that you are only hitting your ball in order to avoid this penalty, which you can do by marking your ball before starting a round.
Another fairly common rule that is broken on the golf course concerns equipment. Golfers are allowed to carry no more than 14 clubs with them, while out on the course, and exceeding this limit typically results in a two-stroke penalty for each hole in which the illegal equipment was used. In addition to too many clubs, golfers are penalized for using clubs with an illegal design or illegal golf balls. If you happen to hit the ball into a water hazard, you could add at least three strokes to your score: one for the initial shot into the water, one for the hazard penalty itself, and one for the next shot after repositioning the ball. While some of the penalties you find in golf have to do with the physical aspect, many can be addressed mentally.
Improve the Mental Game
Remaining aware on the golf course is one of the best ways to avoid silly penalties that can send you from the top of the leaderboard to the bottom. By improving your mental game and taking a measured approach to each round and shot, you will find that you are having more success with golf overall. One of the best ways to do this, as you grow as a golfer, is to enroll in golf camps for juniors.
These camps are designed to teach the finer points of the game, in addition to mechanics and the tools needed to be successful down the line. You can learn more about various camp opportunities by getting in touch with the International Junior Golf Academy. You can contact a representative at IJGA today by calling (888) 452-6642.