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Do Slow Players Know They're Slow?

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  1. 1. Do You Think Slow Players Know They're Slow?

    • Yes, they know but don't care.
      16
    • No, they think their pace is faster than it actually is.
      42
    • They aren't aware that a round of golf should be less than 6 hours ;-)
      9


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Title basically says it all.

Few scenarios come to mind:

- Do you think slow golfers know they are slow or do they delude themselves into thinking they are medium paced?

- Maybe for some their whole group is slow so they don't think much of it but they must realize it takes them 5+ hours to play.

- T hey know they're slow and just don't care. They paid good money to play and they're going to get their money's worth.

- Are they ignorant to the fact that there is something like a pace of play?

From my experience slow golfers don't actually know they're slow and they'll obviously take it personally it they're "called out". They might concede that at times they're slow but not most the time. They'll also argue that if they really needed to pick up the pace, they could. I consider myself a medium-paced player, maybe medium-fast, correct me if I'm wrong @iacas , @tristanhilton85 , @Golfingdad ;-)

When I see a slow group I think it's partially an education problem. They don't really understand ready golf. As a group they go to every player's ball and watch the guy play. The players don't "scatter" and go to their own balls, get their yardages, select their club and prepare to play their shot.

Interesting article from an anonymous tour player

http://www.golfdigest.com/golf-tours-news/2014-10/undercover-tour-pro-slowplay

Quote:

Everyone knows who they are. Guys will say stuff at the range or at lunch. I've confronted slow players before. I've said, "Hey, man, when do you think about picking it up?"

"Not until I get put on the clock," is the consensus answer.

Quote:
Padraig Harrington is a slow player, but he's won three more majors than me. Ben Crane is slow, but he knows it and walks fast. Same with Luke Guthrie. Kevin Na has gotten a lot quicker to pull the trigger. If a guy wants more time to read a putt or has a mental issue, that's cool. What bothers me are slow players who think they're medium-paced and aren't ready to hit when it's their turn. These guys are cheaters.

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I wish I could vote for 2 things, it would be the first and third options.  I voted they don't care and there's probably a fair amount of cynicism behind that vote but I think it's true none the less.

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I suppose "slow" is relative and I don't know any players that would get anywhere near 6 hours to play a round in a foursome.

To me 4 hours is slow.

Among the ones that I consider slow none of them have a clue that they are slow. I voted that they think their pace is faster than it is but it's really more like they don't think about time or pace at all.

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When I played a bunch in the 90's and early 2000's, all ta public tracks, I notice 2 types of slow/slower players. The folks who were older, may have had previous injuries, ect. that couldn't hit the ball very far, i.e. less than 100 yard drive. These folks were the first to let us play through, and were very polite about it.

The second type of SLOW player was guys who thought as those described in # 2, more often than not, drinking was involved, or some big money on the line. I'm talking guys taking over 1 min. to read a 1 foot putt, ect..and these types usually refused to let us play through. Now when I say we, it was usually 3 of us, co workers, if we had no one backing us up, we more often than not finished our round within the 4 hr. mark, unless is was an extremely hard course, and errant shots were the norm for the day...lol

And one other observation, IIRC this happened twice playing, where in both times there were foursomes, and 1 player was either brand new, or had very little experience hitting a golf ball, and wouldn't ya know it, another person in said foursomes, thought it was a good idea to give these 2 people Lessons while playing...sheesh. Lesson in the beginning belong on the range.We told them, and in both cases, the guy giving the lesson was a jerk, when we asked to play through.

I can recall 3 times, where we had really good players in back of us, plus they were much longer hitters than us, and all 3 times, we let them play through. Anyhow, that's my experience.

Interesting read Mike...thanks.

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I guess I'm fortunate in that there's a culture of fastish play at my club, and most people quickly become aware of what is regarded as acceptable. The guidance on pace of play is that a fourball should take no longer than 3 hours 50 minutes. Having said that, there are still players who are conspicuously slower than most and no, in general they don't know they are slow. In fact, some of them are among those who complain about slow play. Mostly their problem is not that they spend an unreasonable amount of time over a shot, it is that they amble rather than walk, aren't ready to play when it's their turn, and generally do everything in slow motion.

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I am not sure on this, but I would question who determines and what defines what is slow? I am guessing there is some sort of baseline time frame out of respect for fellow players? Is there a rule of just how long a game should take?

Maybe the time it takes to play the game as it should be is by just how much one enjoys and takes time in what he or she is doing? There are craftsmen that take longer and do a better job and there are craftsmen that are fast and do a poor job. When I rush it shows :-)

Not long ago me and my two sons were playing and most folks were coming up on us quickly and we had to let some play through although not bad at all considering there were three of us. The thing is those other fast players were two men groups and there were three of us in our group so naturally we would be slower even if we were decent players.

We played moderately but were a bit slow mainly because I am a beginner and they had not played in a while and rusty. We got rushed around a few times because of those facts. I simply do not like to rush something that is so much enjoyment to me and I pay my money like everyone else.

To me rushing at golf totally ruins it for me. I am reminded of the fast food society we live in these days - grab it and go verses society from years ago that does not enjoy the rush and cherished better memories.

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I voted for option 2 but could have went for 3 as well.

The slowpokes I play with just seem to be completely oblivious. They'll hold off on hitting their shot to finish their story (or worse, keeping telling their story while I'm trying to make my shot), congregate around one player's ball instead of going to their own and stand around on the green looking at each other and waiting for someone to finally say, "alright, I'll go."

And one of my biggest pet peeves, standing around the green to add-up their score or finish their story while the foursome behind us stares in exasperation. I do my best to move them along, but because they don't know that they're slow they just start to think I'm being a jerk.

After the tee shots they'll usually start up another story before heading for their balls, I usually take off right away and head straight for my ball. By the time they finish their story and head for their balls there is usually at least one player who has lost his line and can't seem to remember where his ball landed.

It's not too bad when I play with any one of these guys as a twosome, but get all together and it can make for a long day.

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I am not sure on this, but I would question who determines and what defines what is slow? I am guessing there is some sort of baseline time frame out of respect for fellow players? Is there a rule of just how long a game should take?

Maybe the time it takes to play the game as it should be is by just how much one enjoys and takes time in what he or she is doing? There are craftsmen that take longer and do a better job and there are craftsmen that are fast and do a poor job. When I rush it shows

Not long ago me and my two sons were playing and most folks were coming up on us quickly and we had to let some play through although not bad at all considering there were three of us. The thing is those other fast players were two men groups and there were three of us in our group so naturally we would be slower even if we were decent players.

We played moderately but were a bit slow mainly because I am a beginner and they had not played in a while and rusty. We got rushed around a few times because of those facts. I simply do not like to rush something that is so much enjoyment to me and I pay my money like everyone else.

To me rushing at golf totally ruins it for me. I am reminded of the fast food society we live in these days - grab it and go verses society from years ago that does not enjoy the rush and cherished better memories.

Nobody likes to feel rushed when playing golf, but there are a lot of little habits you can easily develop that will ensure that you're moving at an acceptable pace and you won't feel the least bit rushed. The main ones are ready golf, and leaving the green and surrounding area immediately after putting out. There are others, but these two will go a long way towards a stress free round where no one is riding up your ass.

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I think all 3 options apply depending on the player(s). I voted for option 1 only because those type tick me off the most.

Obviously, there are people on golf courses that don't know or care that if the pace of play is quicker, then more people can get on a golf course and complete their round on a given day.

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Mostly #2, but a bit of #3. It doesn't help when a course (or the USGA) sets a pace of play standard of 4:20ish. It's a bit like the speed limit. Whatever is published, a lot of people add 10mph to it and figure they're close enough.

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From my experience slow golfers don't actually know they're slow and they'll obviously take it personally it they're "called out". They might concede that at times they're slow but not most the time. They'll also argue that if they really needed to pick up the pace, they could. I consider myself a medium-paced player, maybe medium-fast, correct me if I'm wrong @iacas, @tristanhilton85, @Golfingdad

I'd agree with that. Slow play is a matter of perception to some degree.

I think players who struggle on the course, take a lot of shots, might concede they are slow players more than those who don't play ready golf and who are overly methodical. Really in that case the methodical nature is built into their game, so they might not be aware they are doing it.

When I see a slow group I think it's partially an education problem. They don't really understand ready golf. As a group they go to every player's ball and watch the guy play. The players don't "scatter" and go to their own balls, get their yardages, select their club and prepare to play their shot.

I think this goes back to them must never learning ready golf. So their actions are habits, and as such they are probably not aware of how slow they are actually playing. I agree, ready golf can cut of substantial time.

I suppose "slow" is relative and I don't know any players that would get anywhere near 6 hours to play a round in a foursome.

To me 4 hours is slow.

Among the ones that I consider slow none of them have a clue that they are slow. I voted that they think their pace is faster than it is but it's really more like they don't think about time or pace at all.

Depends on the round for me. If I am playing well it would probably seem slow to me. I can walk 18 holes and finish in about 3 hours. If I am struggling it probably feel about right. It just depends on how long I am waiting to hit.

And one of my biggest pet peeves, standing around the green to add-up their score or finish their story while the foursome behind us stares in exasperation. I do my best to move them along, but because they don't know that they're slow they just start to think I'm being a jerk.

I never encountered the story telling before. I do hate when people sit by the green marking the scorecard. Get in and move.

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Not to be racist - just making an observation ... the slowest golfers CONSISTENTLY I find are Asian men.    At practically every NJ course I know, I've played behind a foursome at one time or another, and the one constant seems to be that they always gamble.     From a distance, it seems they exchange $$ at every hole.    Consequently, the slow play is magnified on the greens when they labor over putts.      When I notice an Asian foursome in front of me, I know it's going to be a long day ...

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I chose the middle one, but I think each choice is relevant.  When I first started playing I was slow.  Some friends mentioned to me that I was methodical as well.  I've worked hard to really speed up my play and I think I am medium to medium fast now.

Quote:
When I see a slow group I think it's partially an education problem. They don't really understand ready golf. As a group they go to every player's ball and watch the guy play. The players don't "scatter" and go to their own balls, get their yardages, select their club and prepare to play their shot.

To add to Mike's point above, I also see players take their time after their shot.  The take a minute to put their club in the bag and get into the cart at a snail's pace or they walk slowly off the green while chatting.  I see this in my league group.  I walk much faster than most of the guys.

I do have a close friend in the league who is turning 70.  He plays fast when it is his turn.  But at 70, he doesn't walk too fast.  I give him some slack for that.

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I voted #2 and you can see it all over this forum. Every single golfer here hates slow play but apparently, there's not a single golfer here who plays slow. ;-)

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I actually voted that they know, but don't care.

Although I think it can be a combination.  They don't really think they are that slow, but if confronted, don't care anyway.

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Not to be racist - just making an observation ... the slowest golfers CONSISTENTLY I find are Asian men.    At practically every NJ course I know, I've played behind a foursome at one time or another, and the one constant seems to be that they always gamble.     From a distance, it seems they exchange $$ at every hole.    Consequently, the slow play is magnified on the greens when they labor over putts.      When I notice an Asian foursome in front of me, I know it's going to be a long day ...

Agree, it's not racism, it's just a fact. In my part of the world Korean golfers are extremely slow. They bet a lot and settle the bets on every hole. They don't let people pass through. They are also not very friendly. This happens consistently across several  courses. Must be a cultural thing.

In contrast, japanese players in my area are gentlemen. Very polite. They always say please and thank you. Last month one japanese player accidentally hit another player with his shot and ran to him and got on his knees to apologize.

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From my experience slow golfers don't actually know they're slow and they'll obviously take it personally it they're "called out". They might concede that at times they're slow but not most the time. They'll also argue that if they really needed to pick up the pace, they could.

When I see a slow group I think it's partially an education problem. They don't really understand ready golf. As a group they go to every player's ball and watch the guy play. The players don't "scatter" and go to their own balls, get their yardages, select their club and prepare to play their shot.

I agree and these two points are spot on.

A good player with whom I formerly played was painfully slow.  When asked about his pace, he would say, "I may be a bit slower but I take fewer shots."  The problem was he was so deliberate on those "fewer shots" that he consistently caused our group to lag behind. He just could not concede that he might be the problem in our group's pace because he was a better player than the rest of us.

As to the group dynamic, the description is perfect.  The herd of golfers slowly making their way to each ball sequentially is much too common a sight.  Carts somewhat contribute to this issue as players often seem married to the cart because it has their equipment.

Finally, I will end this comment with an observation.  As a group walks off the green, if one member moves considerably slower than the rest, he will always be the one to replace the flag. ;)

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Nobody likes to feel rushed when playing golf, but there are a lot of little habits you can easily develop that will ensure that you're moving at an acceptable pace and you won't feel the least bit rushed. The main ones are ready golf, and leaving the green and surrounding area immediately after putting out. There are others, but these two will go a long way towards a stress free round where no one is riding up your ass.


Thanks and I totally agree. One thing is for sure, there is a lot more for me to learn. It was interesting my first few rounds out on the course, some things I learned by just being respectful and courteous to my fellow golfers and being aware if someone is behind us and leaving the green quickly was just one of those things that just made good sense. It is good to be mindful of the "better" and "faster" golfers and not hold them up.

Another thing I thought more about after playing again was not to push against those in front of me as I am sure they don't want to feel rushed when they play keeping in mind of how I feel when someone is hot on my heels. It gives an opportunity for me to look at my score, compare notes, and shoot the bull with my boys and laugh a little about our horrible shots! B-)

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