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Anyone else tired of hearing the PGA and USGA talk about pace of play? - Page 5

post #73 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post

So it has nothing to do with the "big city".... Like everywhere else, it's just about people who drag their feet, courses that allow them to do so, and golfers who make excuses and continue to support those courses rather than taking their business elsewhere.

 

Based on my little keyhole of experience, it's demographics. The wider the spread of old/young, beginner/expert, douchebag/not douchebag, etc... the slower the pace. That's my theory. And usually, it's big cities, or high population areas (closely bunched smaller cities) where this happens.

 

The bigger the city, the more the I'll do whatever the hell I want no one can do anything about it attitude. Usually.

post #74 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aguirre View Post
 

Absolutely yes.  In fact, stroke and distance could be done away with on any level.  Tom Watson favors this, and so do I.  

 

You hit your ball into a water hazard, and don't get stroke and distance.  But some arbitrary (in terms of course design) property boundry's force you to take distance as well?  

 

Tidewater in North Carolina has a good local rule here.  It's lined with homes and if you hit it OB there you can take a drop, as if it's a lateral hazard.  This stops provisionals and cuts down on ball searching, since the penalty is less severe.  When I plan golf trips and I'm making the rules, I make this standard, because nobody ever hits two provisionals or actually drives back to the tee.  

Personally I would never play at a course that mandates that players break the rules.

post #75 of 131
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtleback View Post
 

Personally I would never play at a course that mandates that players break the rules.

 

Appendix A Part 1 Local Rules.

 

If they obtained USGA  permission, it's perfectly within the rules.

post #76 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aguirre View Post
 

 

Appendix A Part 1 Local Rules.

 

If they obtained USGA  permission, it's perfectly within the rules.

 

There are no abnormal conditions that interfere with the proper playing of the game and in doing so the committee would be waiving a Rule of Golf, so I guarantee that no such permission was obtained from the USGA.

 

 

33-8. Local Rules

 

a. Policy

 

The Committee may establish Local Rules for local abnormal conditions if they are consistent with the policy set forth in Appendix I.

 

b. Waiving or Modifying a Rule

 

A Rule of Golf must not be waived by a Local Rule. However, if a Committee considers that local abnormal conditions interfere with the proper playing of the game to the extent that it is necessary to make a Local Rule that modifies the Rules of Golf, the Local Rule must be authorized by the USGA.

 

 

For an interesting and concise explanation as to why that particular rule and penalty is impractical and not in keeping with the principles of the Rules of Golf, I suggest the book The Principles Behind The Rules of Golf by Richard Tufts.

 

This isn't a rules thread so let's get back on topic.  There are plenty of threads about this, and similar topics in the rules sub-forum that make for interesting reading for those so inclined.

post #77 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnclayton1982 View Post
 

I'm sick of hearing about it because I don't think its justified for two reasons.  First, there is no set time for "slow" or "fast".  Second, I think its unreasonable to both expect to play at the speed you want AND the time you want.

 

First, if the course posts a time a round should be completed inside, and its known before you pay, then fine.  No problem, the expectations are clear.  But what is "fast" ?  I've played a round in less than 4 hours before and had people asking to play through and getting frustrated, etc... I've played 5 hour rounds where everyone seems content.  If there is no standard, its impossible to complain.  Considering almost everyone defines slow play as "play that holds me up", NOBODY ever thinks they are slow.  They always think they are normal / fast, and everyone else is slow.  Until we have an objective standard posted at the first tee at most clubs (i.e. "A round on this course should take 4 hours").

 

Second, you can't get everything you want.  I play 4 1/2 - 5 hours on Saturday mornings.  I can play as fast as I want when I play at 3 pm on Tuesday.  You don't get both.  You want to play fast?  Great, play at 1 on Tuesday.  You want to play on Saturday morning, when its most convenient for your schedule?  Tough, you're going to be slow, because that's when everyone wants to play.  It seems to me like you are choosing to drive at rush hour when you don't have to, then complaining about traffic.

 

I think without an objective standard the whole discussion is silly.  Further, I think its greedy to want to play BOTH when you want AND at the pace you want.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnclayton1982 View Post
 

So obviously, according to your theory, if the course is packed and everyone is keeping up and the round takes 5 and a 1/2 hours, that isn't slow?

 

Most people you would ask out on the course during a round like that would disagree with you.

 

There is no agreed standard put out by the PGA or the USGA, relating back to the point of the thread.  The USGA says "play faster" to which most players say "Yeah, EVERYONE ELSE needs to play faster, your right".  Whereas if the USGA said "play your round in 4 hours" some people might say "Oh, I'm slow then."

 

The point is that by advocating "faster play" the USGA and PGA accomplish zero because there is no standard.  Everyone hears that and thinks "Yeah, everyone else needs to speed up".  I am suggesting it would be much more effective of an ad campaign if those bodies used a standard of some kind rather than general, generic, relative advice that everyone hears, nods, and agrees everyone else is the problem.

 

We're talking about adding 15-inch holes and other incredibly dramatic remedies from these bodies without those bodies coming out and saying "X hours is fast, Y hours is slow".  That seems silly to me.

 

This is exactly the sort of attitude that is at the root of slow play.  If you can't see the problem , then you won't participate in any suggested solutions.  Pace of play cannot be regulated across the board because courses are different.  Some are quite forgiving and as such should play faster than those which are stupid difficult.  If you choose to lay at one of the more difficult courses, then you should expect the recommended pace to be a bit slower than at that open parkland muni.  Unfortunately that doesn't seem to always hold true.  5+ hour rounds are unacceptable on any course, and the fact that you accept them doesn't make it right.   A lot of it depends on how the management deals with slow play, and how the players respond to management's efforts to keep the flow moving.  

 

I've played somewhat difficult courses where the management is proactive and involved, and play is at a good pace with no log jams.  At these courses, the pace of play requirements are explained up front and are actively enforced.  Most of the players buy into the policy and any who don't are "encouraged" to change their thinking by the staff and by fellow players.

 

I've played at pretty simple, open courses that played slow as sin, with back ups on several tees, because the rangers were ineffective or nonexistent.  The regular players are unconcerned about pace because the course management has a poor attitude toward it.  Play is slow and frustrating, and for the most part, better players will avoid a course which gets that sort of a reputation.

 

I have watched the typical round stretch out by a half hour or more longer than it took 25 years ago.  I'm not sure just what the cause is, because I've seen it happen over that period on the same course with the same pace of play and management policies.  Part of the problem is that the increase was so gradual that players didn't really take note until a significant change had occurred.  New players coming into the game can't see the problem because they never played when the normal round was 4 hours, no matter how full the course was.  When they are told that 4½ hours is too long they can't understand because for them it's always been that long or longer.

 

The fact that I see pace of play as a problem doesn't mean that I'm a proponent of speed golf.  I am an opponent of extremes on either end of the spectrum.  I'm not going to gripe if I have to wait a minute on a few tees (I'd rather have a delay on the tee than in the fairway), but I am going to play at a fairly fast pace if the course is open.  

 

I can easily play most courses at a maximum of a 4:15 pace as part of a similar thinking foursome.  That works out to 14.1 minutes per hole and any fourball that can't average that is either playing the wrong course for their skill (including the wrong tees), or they need an attitude readjustment.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rscott8 View Post

I've heard a lot of things to improve pace of play but haven't heard changing stroke and distance to just a stroke penalty, dropping anywhere along line of flight, and not taking the distance penalty weather your ball is identified or not, for anyone that plays less than 20 rounds a year or will shoot 90 or more or some such thing. Errant shots and looking for your ball to identify it hold up play. Take the stress out of it, drop one and play on, the average Joe just wants to rip it and play so let him, why complicate it for him, red stakes, white stakes?
 
The rules have nothing to do with slow play.  Most casual players don't follow them and don't care anyway.  I  do play by the rules and I can probably lap you going around the course.   Slow play is an attitude, pure and simple.

Edited by Fourputt - 4/28/14 at 9:29am
post #78 of 131

Here is what I posted on another thread about slow play awhile back.

 

"Slow players are slow and IMHO would be slow if the greens (speed) were at 5 and holes were 24" diameter.  They would still take 15 practice swings, change club at least twice, throw grass in air 4 times and never walk more than 5 feet from their cart to their ball while their cart partner hits his/hers.  Certainly you would never see them play ready golf by hitting out of turn but rather they will wait until the guy with the honors get out of the can so he can go in "proper" order."

 

For this thread I'd add even if you eliminate the stroke and distance penalty (most don't observe that rule anyway) the speed of play would not improve because in my observations the rules are not the problem and most casual players (particularly slow ones) don't play by the rules in any case. 

 

Fourputt said it right, slow play is caused by an attitude, not the rules.

post #79 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghalfaire View Post
 

Here is what I posted on another thread about slow play awhile back.

 

"Slow players are slow and IMHO would be slow if the greens (speed) were at 5 and holes were 24" diameter.  They would still take 15 practice swings, change club at least twice, throw grass in air 4 times and never walk more than 5 feet from their cart to their ball while their cart partner hits his/hers.  Certainly you would never see them play ready golf by hitting out of turn but rather they will wait until the guy with the honors get out of the can so he can go in "proper" order."

 

For this thread I'd add even if you eliminate the stroke and distance penalty (most don't observe that rule anyway) the speed of play would not improve because in my observations the rules are not the problem and most casual players (particularly slow ones) don't play by the rules in any case. 

 

Fourputt said it right, slow play is caused by an attitude, not the rules.


This ^^^    but I would also add that fast greens do slow down play especially with the influx of new players .( more so on public and muni courses) 

post #80 of 131
Quote:

If recreational golfers feel they can play slow because pros do they need a reality check. For all practical purposes they aren't playing the same game.

 

I actually totally disagree with this.  A golfer has a right to play however fast or slow he wants to play within certain parameters.  I will admit it - I'm a pretty slow player.  When I have any pitch, I walk from my ball to the green, look, and walk back.  When I have a chip, I look at it from behind the hole as well as behind the ball.  I mark each ball and I putt everything out.  If you need to be slow to play the mental game properly, then you should be "slow".  However, the pros are "slow" for a reason - it helps them.  Throwing out for a minute nonsense like "you play better fast" - which I think is true until you get within 40-50 yards of the green - the pros take a long time to decide their shots in the short game, and then a relatively quick time to execute once they've made a decision.  I totally disagree 100% that an amateur golfer (or even a high capper) plays the same or worse as when they take the time to read the green on pitches/chips, mark all their putts, and take their time.  Went to the Zurich this past weekend and followed Charles Howell.  CH3 took about 6 seconds per shot on the tee.  Took about 6 minutes per shot in the short game.  There is a difference, and time can help you hit better short shots into greens, especially if you aren't familiar with them.

 

Further, we amateurs like to play in tournaments from time to time.  It doesn't work to not look at pitches/chips/putts from all angles during practice (go "fast") then turn on your brain in the tournament and start trying to do all the work you can to hit the best shot you can.  You can't (At least I can't) turn it on and off like a light switch.

 

That said, and the reason I get a bit heated up at threads like this, is that you don't have the right to play as fast as you want.  You have the right to play at a reasonable pace that allows the round to be finished in the time it should take for that particular course.  No more, no less.  My course recommends we play a round in four hours and fifteen minutes. Last Saturday, my round was about four hours on the dot.  There were groups behind us an open holes in front of us, but we finished well within the allotted time and, as such, we were not slow.  If my course drops to 3 hour rounds, I'll pick it up or find somewhere else to play.  But if recommended time is 4 hours 15 minutes, and I finish in 4, you have nothing to complain about.

 

As I've said previously in the thread, there needs to be an objective standard.  Without one, you are "fast" if your faster than the guy behind you and "slow" if your slower than the guy behind me.  I can play a 3 1/2 hour round, but if the guy behind me is on pace for 3 hours then I'm "slow".  I can play a five hour round, but if the guy behind me is playing at 5 1/2 hours, I'm "fast".

 

I don't play well distracted.  I don't want to look behind me to see if I happened to draw a fast group behind this morning.  I shut it out.  I finish my round in 4 hours 15 minutes or less and ignore everyone else.  If my round, for some reason, is going to be longer than the course guideline, I will start to "pick it up" because at that point I'm slow.  I'm not "slow" because you choose to play like a maniac.  I'm slow or fast only in comparison to the objective standard posted by the course.

 

Don't get me started on when "fast" players behind me are "fast" because they aren't playing by the rules (hint: its most of them).  Sure, there are really good, really fast players out there, but most of the time people are "fast" because when they hook the first hybrid in the water they don't walk up, figure out the best place to drop, go through club selection again etc.. they just drop another where the hybrid is and hit it again.  Few people play fast, play well and play by the rules.  Of course they exist, but they are rare in my experience.

 

Its a silly idea that the pace of the other groups on the golf course should determine your pace.  If groups get backed up and we finish in less than the posted course time, its not slow.  By definition.  Further, if you let other groups speed you up or slow you down you let them get you out of your game, which is 100% unacceptable.

 

That said, obviously if there is a single behind me or a super-fast group and nobody behind them, I'll let people through all day.  But I have zero issue with groups being behind help up behind me if I am playing my round under the posted time.

 

<puts on fire-retardant suit>

 

EDIT: Was typing mine before yours went up.  Reading now.

post #81 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnclayton1982 View Post
 

 

-   My course recommends we play a round in four hours and fifteen minutes.

 

-   But if recommended time is 4 hours 15 minutes, and I finish in 4, you have nothing to complain about.

 

-   I'm slow or fast only in comparison to the objective standard posted by the course.

 

-   If groups get backed up and we finish in less than the posted course time, its not slow.  By definition.

 

And these statements all clearly demonstrate why slow play is an issue that begins with the course.  When a course posts a 4:15 expectation, people will rightfully interpret that to mean that anything at or around that time is acceptable.

 

Until courses begin to set an expectation of 3:30 or less, we'll continue to have people who think that a round of golf needs to take forever.  And make no mistake, anything over 4 hours is nothing short of a death slog.

post #82 of 131

I am less concerned with total POP than what the course publishes for HBH POP. I assume it won't be a speed round before I book a time and I want to enjoy my time being out on the course, beats heading home to watch TV. For me it's all relative to what is happening around me, how it affects me mentally etc. If the POP for hole is 8:09 and you spend 15:00 playing it because you lost a ball you need to make an effort to pick up the pace. If this means getting out of routine by taking short cuts on the next hole you need to do it out of consideration for those around you. When you decide to set your own pace it is nothing short of selfish. Courses that publish POP don't determine the times randomly, everything from the obstacles to the length of the hole has been considered. Golfers playing reasonably well should be able to complete holes close to the established POP.

post #83 of 131
Quote:

And these statements all clearly demonstrate why slow play is an issue that begins with the course.  When a course posts a 4:15 expectation, people will rightfully interpret that to mean that anything at or around that time is acceptable.

 

Right, and if people want to go to the Greens' Committee meeting and suggest lowering the time, they are well within their rights.

 

It is absolutely ludicrous in my opinion for me to adjust my speed on the course for something as random as which groups happen to be in front and behind me.  I struggle with my temper, and slowing down around the greens, going through the same progression every time, has really helped me.  I'm not getting out of that because I happen to get a 3 and a 1/2 hour guy behind me and a 3 and a 1/2 hour guy in front of me.  Its my game, and as long as I play within the posted round time of the course, what exactly am I doing wrong?

post #84 of 131

I think it's regional to some degree.    Where I live, for the most part, I've never had a huge problem with pace of play.    I understand it is a huge problem in other areas.   Agree with the OP, I do get a bit sick of hearing about it ...

post #85 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnclayton1982 View Post
 

 

Right, and if people want to go to the Greens' Committee meeting and suggest lowering the time, they are well within their rights.

 

It is absolutely ludicrous in my opinion for me to adjust my speed on the course for something as random as which groups happen to be in front and behind me.  I struggle with my temper, and slowing down around the greens, going through the same progression every time, has really helped me.  I'm not getting out of that because I happen to get a 3 and a 1/2 hour guy behind me and a 3 and a 1/2 hour guy in front of me.  Its my game, and as long as I play within the posted round time of the course, what exactly am I doing wrong?

 

Nothing.  That's why I blame the course.

 

They cater to people who are slow and who don't care about anyone else on the course except themselves.  Until more courses refuse to do so, the majority of golfers will continue to have issues with pace of play and golf in general will continue to decline.

post #86 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave2512 View Post
Yet I will take this slow guy over the guys looking for balls all day because they play too far back and try to kill every shot. A half decent golfer with quirks usually isn't falling out of position. They do all that while waiting for greens to clear etc.
 

Nope, they are the same guys I spoke of.  The rules say 5 minutes for looking for your ball then it is a lost ball.  Etiquette (also in the rules) says that when it becomes apparent that the ball will not be easily found you should wave the group behind you through.  Don't see these guys doing that either.

 

But Dave2512, I agree with you that a lot of players play tees not consistent with their skill level (handicap) and that doesn't help speed of play either.  

post #87 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by David in FL View Post
 

 

Nothing.  That's why I blame the course.

 

They cater to people who are slow and who don't care about anyone else on the course except themselves.  Until more courses refuse to do so, the majority of golfers will continue to have issues with pace of play and golf in general will continue to decline.

If a course publishes their POP is 4:00 then that is what one should expect.  If someone wants to play a round in less than 3.5 hours they are imo just as inconsiderate as someone that take 4.5 hours. 

post #88 of 131

I think the problem is the more often than not the published POP is usually liberal and people still exceed it. There are a few places here that have gotten into the 4.5 hr range and IMO it encourages people to take too much time on par 3's and easier/shorter holes when it's 15 minutes a hole. So while yes finishing in the allowed time is within course policy they have allowed to much time without putting much thought into it. Nobody should take 15 minutes to complete a par 3 even if there is trouble.

post #89 of 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf View Post
 

If a course publishes their POP is 4:00 then that is what one should expect. 

 

Exactly my point.  Until courses have the guts to set, and enforce a reasonable pace of play, we will all suffer.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf View Post
 

 If someone wants to play a round in less than 3.5 hours they are imo just as inconsiderate as someone that take 4.5 hours.

 

Absolutely not.  The fast golfer isn't holding anyone up behind them.  You can't force a group in front of you to move at your own speed (I've tried ;-)), but a group behind you will be slowed down to match your speed.

post #90 of 131
Quote:

There are a few places here that have gotten into the 4.5 hr range and IMO it encourages people to take too much time on par 3's and easier/shorter holes when it's 15 minutes a hole. So while yes finishing in the allowed time is within course policy they have allowed to much time without putting much thought into it.

 

Let me see if I understand.

 

You think 4 hours and 15 minutes is too long for an 18 hole round.  Therefore, if a course sets a 4 hour 15 minute round they have "allowed too much time without putting much thought into it".

 

How do you know they didn't put thought into it and allowed too much time?

 

Because they allow 4 hours 15 minutes.

 

Why do they allow 4 hours 15 minutes?

 

Because they didn't put thought into it and allowed too much time.

 

That's good old fashioned circular logic.

 

Note you didn't ask about the course at all, you didn't make an informed judgment, you just blurted out "4 hours 15 minutes is always too long".  This is why us "slow" players don't really pay much attention to you when you complain.  The times seem arbitrary and it seems like an excuse to try to get everyone else to play at your brisk pace.  I would feel uncomfortable trying to do 18 in 3 and 1/2 hours.  I'm being honest here.  That's too short for me.  4-41/2 seems like a sweet spot.

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