Гольф (англ. golf) — спортивна гра, в якій окремі учасники або команди змагаються, заганяючи маленький м’яч для гольфу в спеціальні лунки ударами ключок, намагаючись пройти відведену дистанцію за мінімальне число ударів.
Golf rules are based on the main principle, which is engraved on the inner side of a cover of the official R&A Rules Limited edition (company established on the base of the most ancient royal club Saint Andrews, Scotland): “Play the ball as it lies, play the course as you find it, and if you cannot do either, do what is fair. But to do what is fair, you need to know the Rules of Golf”.
Taking into account that a full text of Golf Rules is not only a complex, but a solid document, as of 2004 R&A 2004 issues a handy brochure Rules in Brief: “A quick guide to the rules of golf”. Since recently, the document is included to the main edition called “A Quick Guide to the Rules of Golf”.
The introductory part of a document is saying that the main book of Rules serves to regulate disputes on the course, and it is not mandatory for reading. However, every golf player should know the basic principles for the game of golf. Thus, “A quick guide to the rules of golf” and section “Etiquette” in this edition are highly recommended for each and every beginner in golf.
Below are the key principles, which every golf player should “know by heart”. To get a more detailed information, please refer to an official set of rules.
According to the main provision of a quick guide, the game of golf should be played in the correct spirit and to understand this every golf player should be aware of the Etiquette and the Rules of Golf.
- In particular, every player should show consideration to other players. He should play at a good pace and be ready to invite faster moving groups to play through, and should take care of the course by smoothing bunkers, replacing divots and repairing ball marks on the greens.
- Before starting a round, a sportsman is advised to read the Local Rules on the scorecard and the notice board. Do not forget to put an identification mark on your ball; many golfers play the same brand of ball and if you cannot identify your ball, it is considered lost. Count your clubs; you are allowed a maximum of 14 clubs.
- During the round, do not ask for advice from anyone except your partner (i.e. a player on your side) or your caddies. Also, do not give advice to anyone except your partner; you may ask for information on the Rules, distances and the position of hazards, the flagstick, etc.
- Golfers are not allowed to play any practice shots during play of a hole, as well as to use any artificial devices or unusual equipment, unless specifically authorised by Local Rule.
- At the end of a round in match play, a player should ensure the result of the match is posted. Thus, in stroke play, one should ensure that scorecard is completed properly, including being signed by a player and a marker, as well as returned to the Committee as soon as possible.