Friday, January 20, 2012

What to Know About Out of Bounds Hits in Golf?

Every hole on a golf course has a predefined playing area that tests the accuracy of your shots. You must add penalty strokes to your score for every ball that goes beyond the boundaries, which can make the difference between a good and a poor round of golf. Educate yourself on the out-of-bounds rules, so that all members of your party play their next round according to these regulations.
Out of Bounds Rule
Golf courses have defined playing areas, and you will see the boundaries on every hole. When you make a shot and the ball travels beyond the markers, stakes or fence, the ball has left the playing area. Many golf courses include information on the playing area on the score sheet. This gives you a general idea of where the markers lie on the course. You can stand in an out-of-bounds area and play a shot that has stayed inbounds without receiving a penalty.
Penalty Stroke
When one of your shots goes out of bounds, you add a penalty stroke to your score. You will also have to replay the shot from the same spot as your original shot. You cannot take a drop at the location of the out-of-bounds ball because that would provide you with an advantage.
Provisional Ball Rule
During most games, you can play a second, provisional ball if you believe that your original ball has traveled out of bounds. This saves time, since you will not have to locate your ball and then return to your original spot to replay the shot. You play your provisional ball from the same spot as your original shot, but it only counts if your first shot ended up out of bounds. If you find your original ball inbounds, you pick up your provisional ball and the shot you took with the provisional ball will not count. Using the provisional ball adds one penalty shot to your score, but picking it up does not. You must inform your playing partners before taking a provisional ball shot.
Lost Ball Rule
If you cannot find your ball, consider it out of bounds and take the same penalty. You have five minutes to find the ball, and other players on the course can assist you.
Also apply the out-of-bounds rule if your ball enters a water hazard. You will not receive a penalty if you believe that your ball entered an obstruction on the playing area. In this case, place a ball where you believe it would have landed without taking a penalty stroke.

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