Tough Conditions – How Will You Get Better Scores

Larry AckerContributor IMarch 30, 2010

Sooner or later most of us will experience bad weather and adverse course conditions while playing golf. Two days ago , I commenced a round of golf in cold but dry conditions, when a sudden windstorm left the greens hard to get the pars I needed in  for a close score at number 18 . So, I thought that it might be interesting to write about some of the Rules of the golf swing associated with playing golf in bad weather conditions.

The wind was fierce and difficult  to adhere  .
Therefore, my options were to either manipulate the circumstances from my line of putt, which I did with the back of a bunker rake, or take relief by placing my ball, without penalty, at the nearest point of relief that was not in a hazard and not nearer the hole (Rule 25-1b (iii)). The same definition states that manufactured obstructions, so a player may move the debris before making a stroke, and that dew and frost are not loose impediments, so a player may not clear them away before making a stroke.

When the wind is howling and the rain pouring down it is important to remember that Rule 6-8 states that bad weather is not of itself a good reason for discontinuing play. In adverse weather conditions the only legitimate reasons for players to discontinue play is if the Committee has suspended play, or if they believe that there is danger from lightning.

It is well worth being familiar with the procedures covering casual water, which under the Rules is an abnormal ground condition and is defined as , and any accumulation of water is not a hazard.

Simply put, if your ball lies in water, or you have to stand in water to play your ball, you get relief. You cannot lose a ball in because of your position  of the water, providing that it is known or virtually certain that the ball lies in it. In this circumstance you may take relief under Rule 25-1c by determining where the ball last crossed the outermost limits of the water and dropping a ball as described by the Rules, and this could varie  depending on whether the ball was lost through the green, in a bunker, on the putting green or on the teeing ground.

Another important Rule to know is that you are entitled to lift, clean, and drop your ball if it is embedded (i.e. plugs) in its own pitch mark, but only in the ground in any closely mown area through the green, not if it’s in the rough (Rule 25-2).

Be aware of my mantra that you should never commence a round of golf without first checking the Local Rules. It is possible, and in some colder climates, that Local Rules may be introduced to allow for temporary course relief that might interfere with proper playing of the game, including mud and extreme wetness warranting relief for an embedded ball anywhere through the green; or permitting lifting, cleaning and replacing a ball within a specified distance anywhere through the green, or on a closely mown area through the green. These are commonly referred to as ‘Winter Rules’ and are sometimes not defined as accurately as they should be.

Players are permitted to protect themselves from the elements, for example by holding an umbrella over their head while putting, but they may not have someone else assist them by holding it for them.

So just remember when winter comes ,spring is not far away .Click the link below for your better golf swing in Bad Weather conditions