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Article on Course Length, Tee Choices - the Whole "Tee it Forward" Idea


bkuehn1952

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Forward Tees for the Future (usga.org)

No huge surprises here. Still, I found the article interesting. As an aging player I am likely more interested in tee choices and course lengths than the average player.

I generally agree with the idea that most players will have a better time if they can score better, hit different clubs on approach shots, and have a chance at hitting most greens in regulation. Courses can help encourage this by establishing more sets of tees than the traditional Blue/White/Red. The idea of blended tees is catching on and does not typically require the construction of new tees.

 

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Brian Kuehn

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What a timely post. Just yesterday, I was discussing with my playing partner the possibility of moving up for variety: we can still both play from the Blue tees at our regular course, but the White tees would change the "routine" a bit. I also mentioned moving up to the Red tees and playing with irons only (I think the longest both of us have is a 4 iron), for a different kind of variety. We might just try that next time.

But yes, I agree with the article that the forward tees are both too long and stigmatizing, as called ladies or super senior tees, and/or red in color, too often.  Good thinking and data collecting by the USGA.

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  • iacas changed the title to Article on Course Length, Tee Choices - the Whole "Tee it Forward" Idea
  • 2 weeks later...

Many of the 'newer' type of courses have more or less taken the "Ladies Tee" out of the mix. 5 or 6 sets of tees and none of them "Red". Might go Black, Blue, White, Green, Gold, and Silver or similar. The only reference to "Ladies" is on the scorecard in reference to the differing Slopes and Hdcps for each course and hole. 

the whole thing of moving up a tee is probably for the best for most. But Players may want to hit driver- even if they may not be straight, they want to be 'closer'. But too FAR forward and driver stays in the bag and you end up having to lay up and hitting the same club in anyway. And ego's sell Drivers, so folks will move back to soothe their egos anyway. 

'Shorter' isn't always easier, either. You still need to hit fairways and greens AND Putt- which can be 40-50% of your score. 

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I think every course should just put a set of tees at the start of every fairway. I think adding more tee options is a fantastic idea. They should post signs at the 1st and 10th hole about what tee boxes the course recommends people play. 

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I have seen way too many people trying to play from the tips and shouldnt be. This group tends to be in front of me and slows down the pace of play, because they are not hitting the fairway, not on the green in regulation and adding strokes to a hole when they dont need to.

When I play with friend who are seniors, I gladly move up to the tee with them to speed the game up and get a different perspective of the course. 
 

And really who doesnt have fun when the par 3's are 110 and the par 5's are 380 😂

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19 minutes ago, Elmer said:

 

And really who doesnt have fun when the par 3's are 110 and the par 5's are 380 😂

A few years ago, I played with some visitors to the area and they were using rental clubs, etc.. They wanted to play from the 'Gold' tees. Sure, no problem. I saw places I'd never been close to since I'm either Whites or Blues normally. Although a 9 Iron from 135 on a Par 5 was a bit satisfying. Especially when I could cut off a LOT since it is a 90* dogleg. 

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Me and a friend played one of our par 5's from the forward tees and I still took a 5. But I wasn't flaring my left nostril on my backswing all day so that might have had something to do with it. Seriously though, I was given the advice, since I have only recently returned to the game, to play from the forward tee's and stay there until you get a respectable score, then move back a set, and so on.  I think Operation 36 goes along those line IIRC

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I think they should reverse the tee colors, and make the blues/blacks the forward-most tees, and then make the furthest back ones either lavender/pink or rainbow 🌈

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Colin P.

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1 hour ago, colin007 said:

I think they should reverse the tee colors, and make the blues/blacks the forward-most tees, and then make the furthest back ones either lavender/pink or rainbow 🌈

I motion to bring that up at the next member's meeting.

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11 hours ago, saevel25 said:

I think every course should just put a set of tees at the start of every fairway.

If they're just at the start of every fairway… you don't really need a set of tees there, do you? 🙂

9 hours ago, Elmer said:

I have seen way too many people trying to play from the tips and shouldnt be.

People say that, but I don't think it happens nearly as much as they seem to think. At least not since the "golf should beat you up" approach of the 1990s.

Heck, WW's back tees are 6840… and the blues are just under 6500… and most people play the whites or forward. Par 72, too.

I think people generally are pretty good about playing the set of tees that work pretty well for them.

7 hours ago, colin007 said:

I think they should reverse the tee colors, and make the blues/blacks the forward-most tees, and then make the furthest back ones either lavender/pink or rainbow 🌈

I've seen many courses that do that. Often the courses that have a "red" theme like the "Cardinal" course or something will have the back tees as the "red" tees or the "crimson" tees or whatever.

I also like non-colors, like Tobacco Road uses the "Ripper" tees and the "Spike" (I made that one up I think?) tees, so you really have no idea which is which.

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My home course and many others in Florida are getting onto the "Combo" tee train. I am happy to see that as an option because its allows you to move up in a more dignified manner. We have guys that are no longer blue tee material but aren't "all in" on the whites (same for white/gold or gold/green) so the blue/white combo gives them the best of both worlds and sets up a challenge commensurate with their skill and distance levels. We have 5 sets of tees and 8 variations to accommodate all golfers. The tees are expressly referred to by their colors and not by gender names.  No one cares what tees you play and last week I played in a group where 2 of us where blue, 1 on white, and 1 on green/yellow combo. The only thing we do care about is a 4 hour or less round.  

A few weeks ago when season broke, we had a black tee tournament playing at just over 7,000 yards. It was really cool to see the course from back there but 4 @200 yard par 3s got real old. I was happy just to keep it in the 80s. Last week I discovered that we do have a black/blue combo (not on our scorecard but on the GHIN hole by hole scoring app). For now, I am happy playing the Blue Tees at 6400 yards, but realistically could play black/blue at 6680 if I wanted to stretch it out. 


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I like combo tees. Easy enough to do from a course ratings perspective, too.

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My club has been tending to go this direction with our teeing areas.  Adding and extending teeing areas to try and spread out the yardages to give more options for our golfers.  All of our main tees are rated for both men and women.  Would love to see the forward tee yardage reduced to the point where some of the women who have always played the forward tees feel capable of teeing it back a tee.

John

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19 hours ago, iacas said:

I like combo tees. Easy enough to do from a course ratings perspective, too.

Me too. I’ve played courses with blue/white setups.

Scott

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My wife & I (age 62/58) go on golf trips with 4-6 other couples, most who are around or 70+. The men don't want to play anything longer than 6000-6100, so if not marked, we will make up our own combo tees to keep in their comfort zone. It works great. The thing that is an issue though...there are forward tees for senior men, why aren't there any for senior women?  Not enough of them to warrant the expense of tee markers? My wife (58) has a significant advantage over the older ladies so they really can't play any side games. Even par 3 proximity is out for 120+ yard holes. To avoid embarrassing her friends, she will sometimes play men's senior tees. Every guy prays she will be their blind draw partner $$$

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6 minutes ago, sedmo said:

My wife & I (age 62/58) go on golf trips with 4-6 other couples, most who are around or 70+. The men don't want to play anything longer than 6000-6100, so if not marked, we will make up our own combo tees to keep in their comfort zone. It works great. The thing that is an issue though...there are forward tees for senior men, why aren't there any for senior women?  Not enough of them to warrant the expense of tee markers? My wife (58) has a significant advantage over the older ladies so they really can't play any side games. Even par 3 proximity is out for 120+ yard holes. To avoid embarrassing her friends, she will sometimes play men's senior tees. Every guy prays she will be their blind draw partner $$$

I’ve played with some older ladies who just move onto the fairway and tee off. They were mid 70s age. It was fine and they were fun to play with.

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On 6/5/2023 at 1:33 PM, colin007 said:

I think they should reverse the tee colors, and make the blues/blacks the forward-most tees, and then make the furthest back ones either lavender/pink or rainbow 🌈

Our senior golf club uses a similar idea. Our tee colors are: Pink (Back), Green (Middle) and Orange (Front). If we do another iteration we might go Pink, Silver, Black (or Blue).

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Brian Kuehn

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On 6/11/2023 at 10:09 AM, bkuehn1952 said:

Our senior golf club uses a similar idea. Our tee colors are: Pink (Back), Green (Middle) and Orange (Front). If we do another iteration we might go Pink, Silver, Black (or Blue).

Love it.

Colin P.

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