Pace of Play Month: Ten Ways to Speed it Up


Charlie Rymer    June 1, 2013, 7:00 am


Anybody who plays golf slower than me is an idiot. Anybody who plays golf faster than me is a maniac. Yes, I stole that concept from the late George Carlin.

And boy does it apply to pace-of-play issues we have in golf today. Nobody thinks slow play is their fault. But I'm here to tell you that everyone is guilty.

We all play too slow. And I'm not talking about touring professionals. Let the tour pros creep around at whatever pace they can tolerate. After all, they are being paid to be out there. The rest of us are just trying to fit in what golf we can in our ridiculously busy lives.

Many of us make the decision to not play golf because it takes up too much of our day. I'm one of those golfers. I'm mad. And I'm going to do something about it.

Awareness and education are the keys. I'm not talking about turning golf into a track meet. Incremental improvement is the goal. I am suggesting that by making all golfers aware that slow play is a problem and educating players on practical ways to be more efficient with their time that we can all get a better golf experience.

June is Pace of Play Month at Golf Channel and you’ll see plenty of on-air and online pieces throughout the month. I'm making it my personal mission to help speed up the game. It's not rocket engineering. And it's going to be fun. In a time when we all can't seem to agree on anything, I believe I've discovered common ground. If we all play golf faster then we all get to play more golf.

And if you don't think that's a good thing then you are a KNUCKLEHEAD.  Don't be a #knucklehead!

Ten Ways to Improve Pace of Play

1. Move promptly: Proceed quickly to your ball and be ready when it’s your turn to hit.

2. Play promptly: Take 30 seconds, maximum, to hit your shot.

3. Be quicker on the greens: Read it. Hit it. Tap it in. Go to the next tee.

4. Treat the rules with discretion: Take no more than 3 minutes to look for balls and take relief.

5. Do your housekeeping on your own time: Start the round with tees, markers, balls and a ball-mark repair tool in your pocket. Replace headcovers while you walk. Write down scores on the next tee. Don’t make others wait.

6. Be cart smart: Drop off your partner and drive to your ball. When you leave the cart, take three clubs, not one. Park behind greens.

7. Be a good teammate: Know your playing partners' strengths and weaknesses; help them when it’s convenient, move on when it’s not.

8. Play the right course for your ability level: Choose a set of tees with a rating of 142 minus your handicap index. Or just tee it forward.

9. Demand accountability from the course you play: Ask them to set up the course properly and, most importantly, to manage the tee sheet responsibly.

10. Accept responsibility: Recognize that slow play isn’t just the other guy’s fault.