Pick up the Flag Stick
Ever have that awkward moment where you're the last to finish, and as you head to the next tee box, you realize the pin remains on the ground, forcing a walk of shame back to the green? Luckily, it wasn't your fault. If you’re the first to finish out, you should immediately grab the pin.
Make Your Golf Cart Invisible
Carts are very much a part of the modern game. Think about it: They're mentioned on the backs of scorecards, discussed in the Decisions on the Rules of Golf, bags and other items are designed specifically for them, and they're used at most courses. The sheer pervasiveness of them makes cart etiquette vitally important.
Your goal when driving a cart should be to leave no trace you were there. Because we tend to look where we're going and not where we've been, it's easy to damage the turf and not realize it. Avoid wet areas and spots that are getting beaten up from traffic. Golfers tend to play "follow the leader" and drive in single file out to the fairway before branching off. It's usually better to "scatter" -- everyone take a different route -- so cart traffic is spread out.
We get it: Golf balls are expensive, and it's nice you're risking the threat of poison ivy to find another's ball. But there's a difference between making an honest effort and belaboring the point. After five minutes, come to peace with the ball's disappearance and move on.
Placing Bag on a Tee Box
Congrats, you decided to walk over ride. Alas, many that shoulder their sticks fail to keep their stand off the tee box. There's the potential to scuff up the hitting area, but of greater note, bags can be distracting if it's in a player's striking vision.
Make a Proper Divot at the Range
There are lots of ways to go about hitting your balls, but if you don’t want to tee up take some advice from the USGA and hit it like this. There are three ways to create a divot.
A scattered divot
pattern removes the most amount of turf because a full divot is removed with every swing. Scattering divots results in the most turf loss and uses up the largest area of a tee stall. This forces the golf facility to rotate tee stalls most frequently and often results in an inefficient use of the tee.
A concentrated divot
pattern removes all turf in a given area. While this approach does not necessarily result in a full-sized divot removed with every swing, by creating a large void in the turf canopy there is little opportunity for timely turf recovery.
The linear divot
pattern involves placing each shot directly behind the previous divot. In so doing, a linear pattern is created and only a small amount of turf is removed with each swing. This can usually be done for 15 to 20 shots before moving sideways to create a new line of divots. So long as a minimum of 4 inches of live turf is preserved between strips of divots, the turf will recover quickly. Because this divot pattern removes the least amount of turf and promotes quick recovery, it is the preferred method.
Fix Divots, Rake Bunkers
Now that you’ve made a few divots it’s time to fix them. Using our favorite divot tool, a long tee or just the tip of your shoe if it works, clean it up. Putting is hard enough without having to navigate past potholes. The rule of thumb is to fix your own ball mark, as well as one more. Same with bunkers: the sand should be just as pristine as it was when you entered. Leave no footprints or ball marks behind. A good rule of thumb is leave the bunker as you wish to play out of it. Smooth out the bumps and don’t just drag the rake behind you as you exit the bunker.
Tee it Forward!
Last but certainly not least, play to your strengths. The narcissist golfer believes he's attractive, funny, talented, and he insists on playing the championship tees, as if anything less than 7,500 yards is an affront to his “stellar” game. Don’t hold everyone’s game up by starting much farther back then you should. Can’t hit 300 yard drives? You are not alone. The average golfer only hits their drive with 220 yards of carry. Enjoy your round and move up a tee or two. Heck even try out one of our favourite games, 1 club. Tee it up from the shortest yardage possible and only carry one club for the entire round. Explore the course and learn the importance of shot placement and scoring. You’ll actually play better when you grab the other 13 sticks for your next round.