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The Strangest Rules in Golf

With so many rules in golf, there is bound to be some strange ones.

From what once started as a simple 13 rules game has since become an expansive list of official rules. There are hundreds of side rules that most people do not know, and of course, there are some bizarre ones!


1. Oranges on The Course “If your ball is lodged in an orange, you cannot take relief without penalty.” – USGA decision 23/10. Don't you hate it when you hit a beautiful drive, you walk up to it, and it is lodged into an orange. You have no idea what to do! Thankfully, there is a rule for that, but it is not ideal. You have two options, take relief with a stroke penalty, OR play it as it lies (meaning hit the orange with the ball inside.) While this may sound like fun, your score might disagree. How this rule came about is unknown, but I doubt it is often needed.


2. Don't Touch The Bug! “If the player’s ball lies in a hazard, the insect is considered to be in the hazard and the player may not touch or physically remove the insect from the ball (Rule 13-4c). However, as the insect is animate and capable of moving on its own, the player may take action, such as waving his hand, a club or towel, to encourage the insect to move.” – USGA decision 13-4c/16.5. This is a very strange rule as there is no need for an insect to be hit by a club. You must wonder how the conversation for these rules went down.


3. Indoor Golf “If a shot ends up in the clubhouse, and the clubhouse is not out-of-bounds, you can open a door or window and play the next shot without penalty.” – USGA decision 24-2b/14. This is great. Most likely, there are not many clubhouses in bounds, but the idea of eating lunch and people are taking shots next to you is amusing. It would seem a frat house made this rule.


4. Broken Bones "One shot penalty for breaking a limb/bone on a practice swing" - USGA decision 12-4c/3 The final rule is also the worst. I do not imagine you would finish a round after breaking a bone, but to rub it in your face with a penalty is just rude. Immense respect to anyone who has broken a bone on a swing and continued.





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