Nothing is more important to becoming a better golfer than confidence.
Confidence in a golfer is displayed by the way they walk, the way they swing and the way they handle themselves around the golf course. With knowledge comes confidence, and this is why I believe learning the rules of golf can help you become a better golfer.
Understanding the rules of golf can be a daunting task.
If you’ve ever seen a rules book, let alone a decisions book, you can understand what I mean. There are literally rules for every situation you can imagine encountering.
There are even some rules for situations you can’t imagine happening. That being said, your ability to better understand the rules of golf will help you to become a more confident golfer.
During my years spent as a head golf professional, I would offer rules clinics for our membership.
These clinics were usually attended by those learning the game, but I would occasionally have attendees who had been playing golf for many years.
My clinics would focus on learning some of the most common rules you should know. Examples include dropping from a cart path, taking relief from an unplayable lie and where to drop if your ball goes into a water hazard.
These are scary propositions for many players, and can have a negative effect on their ability to improve as a golfer.
Golf is a game often times played out of fear. We focus on what we hope doesn’t happen, rather than on what we hope does happen.
This fear also applies to not understanding the rules of golf. I’ve worked with players who are scared of having their ball stop on a cart path because they are unsure of what to do from that point. These thoughts continue as they notice their ball rolling towards a tree, or even the water.
Knowledge is a powerful tool. The more you learn about your golf swing, the better you understand how to hit the golf ball more effectively.
This applies to learning the rules, as well. Take some time to study the rules of golf. Not only will your confidence grow, but you’ll find yourself less concerned about hitting your ball into a spot of “uncertainty.”