The United States Golf Association hosted 125 industry experts Jan. 19-20 at Brookside Golf Club in Pasadena, Calif., for the Association’s Pace and Innovation Symposium.
The two-day symposium marked the third time that the USGA has brought together experts and leaders from throughout the industry to discuss the issues that often serve as barriers to participation and enjoyment of the game.
Golf Canada continues to work with the USGA and R&A in the administration of golf and the rules of golf, and pace of play is certainly one area that has been under the microscope. A lot of research and studies have been conducted to help all of us gain a clear understanding of all the variables that affect pace of play. Ultimately, everyone has a role to play in ensuring that pace of play does not have a negative impact on a golfer’s experience.
Golf Canada will continue to work with our national and provincial partners, including course owners/operators, manager, superintendents and PGA of Canada professionals to communicate best practices and address factors that contribute to pace of play.
Here are a few aspects to consider that could improve pace of play:
- Minimize time on the tee and between shots – encourage your group to play “ready golf”, keep your pre-shot routine to a minimum and place your clubs in a convenient location in relation to the path to your next shot (i.e. close to the next tee when you’re near the green).
- Keep up with the group in front – your goal should be to keep up with the group in front, not immediately in front of the group behind. A good rule is to arrive at the location of your next shot as the group in front is leaving your landing area.
- Tee it Forward – this initiative encourages all golfers to play the course at a length that is aligned with their average driving distance. For more information, click here.
- Other forms of play – match play, stableford, best-ball and foursomes are a few examples that take less time to play while still offering a fun and competitive environment
- Course set-up – courses should set up the course to encourage a good pace by having a reasonable height for rough, appropriate green speed for the contour of your greens, clearly identified yardage markers and fair hole locations.
- Play 9 – if you don’t have time to play a full 18-hole round, we encourage everyone to get out and play nine holes. This is in accordance with the rules of golf and Golf Canada’s Handicap System.
If you have any suggestions, please feel free to email them to me at email@example.com.