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Question pertaining to Rule 13-2

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

Going by the following excerpts from Rule 13-2:

 

Quote:
 

A player must not improve or allow to be improved:

  • the position or lie of his ball,
  • the area of his intended Stance or swing,

by any of the following actions:

  • pressing a club on the ground,
  • moving, bending or breaking anything growing or fixed (including immovable Obstructions and objects defining Out Of Bounds),
  • creating or eliminating irregularities of surface,
  • removing or pressing down sand, loose soil, replaced divots or other cut turf placed in position, or
  • removing dew, frost or water.

However, the player incurs no penalty if the action occurs:

 

 

... I have to question the acts by the player who started THIS THREAD in the equipment section:

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbb View Post
 

I usually like to push the clubface a bit in to the ground before I start my swing and I notice that the shaft is very flexible when I do this.

 

It seems to me that such an act is a direct violation of the points:

 

"pressing the club into the ground, or"

"creating or eliminating irregularities of surface"

 

because he is doing more than just:

 

"grounding the club lightly when Addressing the Ball"

or "in making a Stroke or the backward movement of the club for a Stroke"

 

He says that he is "pressing the club into the ground" enough to flex the shaft.  That's a lot more than just grounding, and would in most cases result in improving the area of his swing, to wit, the area where the club impacts the ball.

 

I'm open for discussion on it, but at the moment I'm thinking that he's in violation every time he makes a swing.

post #2 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

Going by the following excerpts from Rule 13-2:



... I have to question the acts by the player who started THIS THREAD in the equipment section:

It seems to me that such an act is a direct violation of the points:

"pressing the club into the ground, or"
"creating or eliminating irregularities of surface"

because he is doing more than just:

"grounding the club lightly when Addressing the Ball"
or "in making a Stroke or the backward movement of the club for a Stroke"

He says that he is "pressing the club into the ground" enough to flex the shaft.  That's a lot more than just grounding, and would in most cases result in improving the area of his swing, to wit, the area where the club impacts the ball.

I'm open for discussion on it, but at the moment I'm thinking that he's in violation every time he makes a swing.

I saw that, and it struck me as unusual. I didn't think of it in terms of 13-2 though. Great question.

I could easily see how such an action could improve the area of swing, almost like stepping down behind the ball would....especially since he apparently does so with such force as to be able notice a difference in shaft flex.

I'd like to see the actual swing, but my initial thought is to agree with you on the violation.
post #3 of 19

I don't see there is any discussion.  He is only allowed to ground his club lightly i.e. the downward pressure should be no more than is made by the weight of the club.

 

If the shaft of his club flexes, either he is exerting considerable and undue pressure,  or the shaft is so soft that it bends under its own weight and should be returned to the seller. I go for the former and a clear 13-2 breach. ;-) 

post #4 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColinL View Post
 

I don't see there is any discussion.  He is only allowed to ground his club lightly i.e. the downward pressure should be no more than is made by the weight of the club.

 

If the shaft of his club flexes, either he is exerting considerable and undue pressure,  or the shaft is so soft that it bends under its own weight and should be returned to the seller. I go for the former and a clear 13-2 breach. ;-) 

 

The thing is, the guy posts a 2 handicap, so he has been doing this for a long time.  Has he never played in a competition?  Or in competition with anyone who knows the rules?  This would scream at me if I was playing him and saw him do that.  How does one get to be a legitimate 2 handicap without knowing how to properly address the ball?

post #5 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fourputt View Post

The thing is, the guy posts a 2 handicap, so he has been doing this for a long time.  Has he never played in a competition?  Or in competition with anyone who knows the rules?  This would scream at me if I was playing him and saw him do that.  How does one get to be a legitimate 2 handicap without knowing how to properly address the ball?

Equally, for someone to be that good, and to have been doing it for that long, how in the world do you break yourself of that habit if need be?!

@dbbb, can you jump in here and give us some feedback? Would love to hear your perspective. Thanks!
post #6 of 19

Hello guys, yes interesting question :)

 

I obviously dont do this when I play a tournament or any normal round. I do this on the practice area when im trying out new clubs to see/feel the new shaft (as the topic of the other thread). Ive been playing college golf and wouldnt do such a thing in any tournament. Again, interesting question still!

post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbb View Post

Hello guys, yes interesting question :)

I obviously dont do this when I play a tournament or any normal round. I do this on the practice area when im trying out new clubs to see/feel the new shaft (as the topic of the other thread). Ive been playing college golf and wouldnt do such a thing in any tournament. Again, interesting question still!

Got it. We obviously misunderstood the post.

Hang around, you have a lot to contribute! c2_beer.gif
post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbb View Post
 

Hello guys, yes interesting question :)

 

I obviously dont do this when I play a tournament or any normal round. I do this on the practice area when im trying out new clubs to see/feel the new shaft (as the topic of the other thread). Ive been playing college golf and wouldnt do such a thing in any tournament. Again, interesting question still!

 

Okay.  I took your statement to mean that you did it as a part of your normal routine.  

post #9 of 19

Ah well, it's not the first time I've answered a question that wasn't asked.

 

It did occur to me anyway that I was hasty in declaring such an action in addressing the ball as automatically a breach of 13-2.  It would only be a breach if it resulted in the player's lie being improved.  You might imagine a circumstance where the ground is so dry and hard that no amount of pressing on would change it a bit.

post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColinL View Post
 

Ah well, it's not the first time I've answered a question that wasn't asked.

 

It did occur to me anyway that I was hasty in declaring such an action in addressing the ball as automatically a breach of 13-2.  It would only be a breach if it resulted in the player's lie being improved.  You might imagine a circumstance where the ground is so dry and hard that no amount of pressing on would change it a bit.

 

However, if as in the initial assumption, the player did this on every stroke, it would inevitably result in a breach at some point.

post #11 of 19

A question if I may ... and it might be slightly off topic from the original question ... 

 

A player must not improve or allow to be improved:

 

  • the area of his intended Stance or swing,

by any of the following actions:

 

  • moving, bending or breaking anything growing or fixed (including immovable Obstructions and objects defining Out Of Bounds),

 

 

So when I see people, back into the branches of a tree of bush to help them have a swing at the ball that is actually an infraction right?  If so is that a one or two strokes?

 

Just a bit confused as I do see some folks " back in", or hold branches/a plant out of the way with their leg etc ... 

post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by isukgolf View Post
 

A question if I may ... and it might be slightly off topic from the original question ... 

 

A player must not improve or allow to be improved:

 

  • the area of his intended Stance or swing,

by any of the following actions:

 

  • moving, bending or breaking anything growing or fixed (including immovable Obstructions and objects defining Out Of Bounds),

 

 

So when I see people, back into the branches of a tree of bush to help them have a swing at the ball that is actually an infraction right?  If so is that a one or two strokes?

 

Just a bit confused as I do see some folks " back in", or hold branches/a plant out of the way with their leg etc ... 


The Rules permit a player to "fairly take his stance", but this does not include the right to "back in" unequivocally.  You need to read Decision 13-2/1 (too long to post) to fully understand the limitations.

post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by rogolf View Post


The Rules permit a player to "fairly take his stance", but this does not include the right to "back in" unequivocally.  You need to read Decision 13-2/1 (too long to post) to fully understand the limitations.

Thank you for the answer ... I certainly give that a read!

I think I found it ...

Examples of actions which do constitute fairly taking a stance are:

backing into a branch or young sapling if that is the only way to take a stance for the selected stroke, even if this causes the branch to move out of the way or the sapling to bend or break.
bending a branch of a tree with the hands in order to get under the tree to play a ball.


Examples of actions which do not constitute fairly taking a stance are:

deliberately moving, bending or breaking branches with the hands, a leg or the body to get them out of the way of the backswing or stroke.
standing on a branch to prevent it interfering with the backswing or stroke.
hooking one branch on another or braiding two weeds for the same purpose.
bending with a hand a branch obscuring the ball after the stance has been taken.
bending an interfering branch with the hands, a leg or the body in taking a stance when the stance could have been taken without bending the branch.
Edited by isukgolf - 7/14/14 at 1:01am
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by isukgolf View Post


Thank you for the answer ... I certainly give that a read!

I think I found it ...

Examples of actions which do constitute fairly taking a stance are:

backing into a branch or young sapling if that is the only way to take a stance for the selected stroke, even if this causes the branch to move out of the way or the sapling to bend or break.
bending a branch of a tree with the hands in order to get under the tree to play a ball.


Examples of actions which do not constitute fairly taking a stance are:

deliberately moving, bending or breaking branches with the hands, a leg or the body to get them out of the way of the backswing or stroke.
standing on a branch to prevent it interfering with the backswing or stroke.
hooking one branch on another or braiding two weeds for the same purpose.
bending with a hand a branch obscuring the ball after the stance has been taken.
bending an interfering branch with the hands, a leg or the body in taking a stance when the stance could have been taken without bending the branch.


You should also note from Decision 13-2/1.1, "When fairly taking his stance the player is required to take his stance in the least intrusive manner that results in the minimum improvement in the position or lie of the ball, area of intended stance or swing or line of play."  (my emphasis)

post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by rogolf View Post
 


You should also note from Decision 13-2/1.1, "When fairly taking his stance the player is required to take his stance in the least intrusive manner that results in the minimum improvement in the position or lie of the ball, area of intended stance or swing or line of play."  (my emphasis)

 

I was going to say the same thing.  Especially with branches, I look at it this way:  If there is any other way you could have taken your stance, where less branches are being moved or repositioned, you must take that less obtrusive stance.

post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dormie1360 View Post
 

 

I was going to say the same thing.  Especially with branches, I look at it this way:  If there is any other way you could have taken your stance, where less branches are being moved or repositioned, you must take that less obtrusive stance.

 

Would "any other way" include taking a stance for a left-handed (assuming a right handed golfer) swing?  I ask because if the ball is adjacent to a bush so that a righthander would have to  back in and thereby move and reposition branches but, if he took a left-handed stance and swing might not need to move or reposition anything.  I do not like the idea of having to take a left-handed stance, but I'm not sure whether it might be required?

post #17 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtleback View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dormie1360 View Post
 

 

I was going to say the same thing.  Especially with branches, I look at it this way:  If there is any other way you could have taken your stance, where less branches are being moved or repositioned, you must take that less obtrusive stance.

 

Would "any other way" include taking a stance for a left-handed (assuming a right handed golfer) swing?  I ask because if the ball is adjacent to a bush so that a righthander would have to  back in and thereby move and reposition branches but, if he took a left-handed stance and swing might not need to move or reposition anything.  I do not like the idea of having to take a left-handed stance, but I'm not sure whether it might be required?

 

No.  The phrase "fairly taking your stance" implies that you are taking your normal stance.

post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtleback View Post
 

 

Would "any other way" include taking a stance for a left-handed (assuming a right handed golfer) swing?  I ask because if the ball is adjacent to a bush so that a righthander would have to  back in and thereby move and reposition branches but, if he took a left-handed stance and swing might not need to move or reposition anything.  I do not like the idea of having to take a left-handed stance, but I'm not sure whether it might be required?

 

As Fourputt says, the answer is no, you don't have to stand left-handed.

 

However, there's a good video on the USGA site that clearly illustrates the difference between illegally taking your stance, and fairly taking your stance. 

 

See:

 

http://www.usga.org/rulestrainers.aspx

 

in "Play the course as you find it, part 2" in the section, "Permitted Actions"

 

You'll see a right-handed player slide along a branch to bend it behind him and prevent it from interfering with his backswing (not permitted).  Then it shows him fairly taking his stance, leaving the branch alone and in a position that will clearly interfere with his backswing.  Even though he has backed into the bush, he has done it in the least intrusive way possible.

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