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Rules of Golf

The USGA, in conjunction with The R&A in St. Andrews, Scotland, writes, interprets and maintains the Rules of Golf to guard the tradition and integrity of the game.The two organizations are joint authors and owners of The Rules of Golf and Decisions on the Rules of Golf.Through an agreement with The R&A, the Rules jurisdiction of the USGA includes only the United States, its possessions and Mexico.The latest version went into effect Jan. 1, 2012, with the next revision taking effect Jan. 1, 2016.

Golf Rule 7 - Practice

PRACTICE: I see this rule mostly violated when a player finishes nine holes and goes to the driving range before playing from the tenth teeing ground.

MATCH PLAY---on the day of a match before or between rounds, the players can practice on the course being played before their round begins.

STROKE PLAY---a player may not practice on the course being played before or between their round or playoff. This includes testing the surface of any of the putting greens. This rule also includes not allowing practicing between rounds on the course being played if the event is on consecutive days.

EXCEPTION FOR STROKE PLAY---it is permitted to practice putting or chipping before or between rounds or playoff, near or on the first teeing ground.


PRACTICING DURING A ROUND: during the round it's acceptable for a player to practice putting or chipping near or on the putting green of the last hole played, or on any practice putting green or the teeing ground of the next hole to be played.. It's not acceptable to play a practice stroke anywhere else on the course between holes or during a hole.

TIPS: *A player cannot play a practice stroke from a hazard, and cannot delay play to practice. *After a hole has been decided (match play) strokes played in the continuing play of the hole do not count as practice. *When play has been suspended, the player may practice before play starts other than on the course being played, or where the commitee permits.

PENALTY FOR PRACTICE DURING A ROUND: Match play--loss of hole; Stroke play--two strokes (if a penalty under this rule occurs between the play of holes, the penalty applies to the next hole).