Definitions

Advice

Advice/1 – Verbal Comments or Actions That Are Advice

Examples of when comments or actions are considered adviceAdvice: Any verbal comment or action (such as showing what club was just used to make a stroke) that is intended to influence a player in:(...Continued) and are not allowed include:

Advice/2 – Verbal Comments or Actions That Are Not Advice

Examples of comments or actions that are not adviceAdvice: Any verbal comment or action (such as showing what club was just used to make a stroke) that is intended to influence a player in:(...Continued) include:

Animal Hole

Animal Hole/1 – Isolated Animal Footprint or Hoof Mark Is Not Animal Hole

An isolated animalAnimal: Any living member of the animal kingdom (other than humans), including mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates (such as worms, insects, spiders and crustaceans). footprint that is not leading into an animal holeAnimal Hole: Any hole dug in the ground by an animal, except for holes dug by animals that are also defined as loose impediments (such as worms or insects).(...Continued) is not a hole made by an animalAnimal: Any living member of the animal kingdom (other than humans), including mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates (such as worms, insects, spiders and crustaceans). but rather is an irregularity of the surface from which relief without penalty is not allowed. However, when such damage is on the putting greenPutting Green: The area on the hole the player is playing that:(...Continued), it may be repaired (Rule 13.1c(2) – Improvements Allowed on Putting Green).

Boundary Object

Boundary Object/1 – Status of Attachments to Boundary Object

Objects that are attached to a boundary objectBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued), but are not part of that boundary objectBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued), are obstructionsObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued) and a player may be allowed free relief from them.

If the CommitteeCommittee: The person or group in charge of the competition or the course.(...Continued) does not wish to provide free relief from an obstructionObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued) attached to a boundary objectBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued), it may introduce a Local Rule providing that the obstructionObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued) is an integral objectIntegral Object: An artificial object defined by the Committee as part of the challenge of playing the course from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued), in which case it loses its status as an obstructionObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued) and free relief is not allowed.

For example, if angled supports are so close to a boundary fence that leaving the supports as obstructionsObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued) would essentially give players free relief from the boundary objectBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued), the CommitteeCommittee: The person or group in charge of the competition or the course.(...Continued) may choose to define the supports to be integral objectsIntegral Object: An artificial object defined by the Committee as part of the challenge of playing the course from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued).

Boundary Object/2 – Status of Gate Attached to Boundary Object

A gate for getting through a boundary wall or fence is not part of the boundary objectBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued). Such a gate is an obstructionObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued) unless the CommitteeCommittee: The person or group in charge of the competition or the course.(...Continued) chooses to define it as an integral objectIntegral Object: An artificial object defined by the Committee as part of the challenge of playing the course from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued).

Boundary Object/3 – Movable Boundary Object or Movable Part of Boundary Object Must Not Be Moved

Boundary objectsBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued) are treated as immovable, even if part of the object is designed to be movable. To ensure a consistent approach, this applies to all boundary objectsBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued).

An example of how a movable boundary objectBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued) may come into play during a roundRound: 18 or fewer holes played in the order set by the Committee. includes when a boundary stake interferes with a player’s stanceStance: The position of a player’s feet and body in preparing for and making a stroke. so he or she pulls the stake out of the ground (a breach of Rule 8.1a), but part of it breaks during removal. If the player realizes the mistake before making the next strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued), he or she may restore the improvedImprove: To alter one or more of the conditions affecting the stroke or other physical conditions affecting play so that a player gains a potential advantage for a stroke. conditionsConditions Affecting the Stroke: The lie of the player’s ball at rest, the area of intended stance, the area of intended swing, the line of play and the relief area where the player will drop or place a ball. by replacing enough of the broken boundary stake to restore the interference to what it was before the stake was removed.

But if the improvement cannot be eliminated (such as when a boundary objectBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued) has been bent or broken in such a way that the improvement cannot be eliminated), the player cannot avoid penalty.

Club-Length

Club-Length/1 – Meaning of “Club-Length” When Measuring

For the purposes of measuring when determining a relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued), the length of the entire club, starting at the toe of the club and ending at the butt end of the grip is used. However, if the club has a headcover on it or has an attachment to the end of the grip, neither is allowed to be used as part of the club when using it to measure.

Club-Length/2 – How to Measure When Longest Club Breaks

If the longest club a player has during a roundRound: 18 or fewer holes played in the order set by the Committee. breaks, that broken club continues to be used for determining the size of his or her relief areasRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued). However, if the longest club breaks and the player is allowed to replace it with another club (Exception to Rule 4.1b(3)) and he or she does so, the broken club is no longer considered his or her longest club.

If the player starts a roundRound: 18 or fewer holes played in the order set by the Committee. with fewer than 14 clubs and decides to add another club that is longer than the clubs he or she started with, the added club is used for measuring so long as it is not a putter.

Course

Course Interpretations

See Rule 2.2c for when a ball touches two areas of the courseAreas of the Course: The five defined areas that make up the course:.

Equipment

Equipment/1 – Status of Items Carried by Someone Else for the Player

Items, other than clubs, that are carried by someone other than a player or his or her caddieCaddie: Someone who helps a player during a round, including in these ways:(...Continued) are outside influencesOutside Influence: Any of these people or things that can affect what happens to a player’s ball or equipment or to the course:, even if they belong to the player. However, they are the player’s equipmentEquipment: Anything used, worn, held or carried by the player or the player’s caddie.(...Continued) when in the player’s or his or her caddie’sCaddie: Someone who helps a player during a round, including in these ways:(...Continued) possession.

For example, if a player asks a spectator to carry his or her umbrella, the umbrella is an outside influenceOutside Influence: Any of these people or things that can affect what happens to a player’s ball or equipment or to the course: while in the spectator’s possession. However, if the spectator hands the umbrella to the player, it is now his or her equipmentEquipment: Anything used, worn, held or carried by the player or the player’s caddie.(...Continued).

Flagstick

Flagstick/1 – Objects Are Treated as Flagstick When Used as Flagstick

If an artificial or natural object is being used to mark the position of the holeHole: The finishing point on the putting green for the hole being played:(...Continued), that object is treated the same as the flagstickFlagstick: A movable pole provided by the Committee that is placed in the hole to show players where the hole is. The flagstick includes the flag and any other material or objects attached to the pole.(...Continued) would be.

For example, if the flagstickFlagstick: A movable pole provided by the Committee that is placed in the hole to show players where the hole is. The flagstick includes the flag and any other material or objects attached to the pole.(...Continued) has been removed and a player wants the position of the holeHole: The finishing point on the putting green for the hole being played:(...Continued) indicated but does not want to waste time getting the flagstickFlagstick: A movable pole provided by the Committee that is placed in the hole to show players where the hole is. The flagstick includes the flag and any other material or objects attached to the pole.(...Continued), someone else may indicate the position of the holeHole: The finishing point on the putting green for the hole being played:(...Continued) with a club. But, for the purpose of applying the Rules, the club is treated as if it were the flagstickFlagstick: A movable pole provided by the Committee that is placed in the hole to show players where the hole is. The flagstick includes the flag and any other material or objects attached to the pole.(...Continued).

Ground Under Repair

Ground Under Repair/1 – Damage Caused by Committee or Maintenance Staff Is Not Always Ground Under Repair

A hole made by maintenance staff is ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) even when not marked as ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued). However, not all damage caused by maintenance staff is ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) by default.

Examples of damage that is not ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) by default include:

Ground Under Repair/2 – Ball in Tree Rooted in Ground Under Repair Is in Ground Under Repair

If a tree is rooted in ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) and a player’s ball is in a branch of that tree, the ball is in ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) even if the branch extends outside the defined area.

If the player decides to take free relief under Rule 16.1 and the spot on the ground directly under where the ball lies in the tree is outside the ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued), the reference point for determining the relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued) and taking relief is that spot on the ground.

Ground Under Repair/3 – Fallen Tree or Tree Stump Is Not Always Ground Under Repair

A fallen tree or tree stump that the CommitteeCommittee: The person or group in charge of the competition or the course.(...Continued) intends to remove, but is not in the process of being removed, is not automatically ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued). However, if the tree and the tree stump are in the process of being unearthed or cut up for later removal, they are “material piled for later removal” and therefore ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued).

For example, a tree that has fallen in the general areaGeneral Area: The area of the course that covers all of the courseexcept for the other four defined areas: (1) the teeing area the player must play from in starting the hole he or she is playing, (2) all penalty areas, (3) all bunkers, and (4) the putting green of the hole the player is playing.(...Continued) and is still attached to the stump is not ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued). However, a player could request relief from the CommitteeCommittee: The person or group in charge of the competition or the course.(...Continued) and the CommitteeCommittee: The person or group in charge of the competition or the course.(...Continued) would be justified in declaring the area covered by the fallen tree to be ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued).

Holed

Holed/1 – All of the Ball Must Be Below the Surface to Be Holed When Embedded in Side of Hole

When a ball is embeddedEmbedded: When a player’s ball is in its own pitch-mark made as a result of the player’s previous stroke and where part of the ball is below the level of the ground.(...Continued) in the side of the holeHole: The finishing point on the putting green for the hole being played:(...Continued), and all of the ball is not below the surface of the putting greenPutting Green: The area on the hole the player is playing that:(...Continued), the ball is not holedHoled: When a ball is at rest in the hole after a stroke and the entire ball is below the surface of the putting green.(...Continued). This is the case even if the ball touches the flagstick.

Holed/2 – Ball Is Considered Holed Even Though It Is Not “At Rest”

The words “at rest” in the definition of holedHoled: When a ball is at rest in the hole after a stroke and the entire ball is below the surface of the putting green.(...Continued) are used to make it clear that if a ball falls into the holeHole: The finishing point on the putting green for the hole being played:(...Continued) and bounces out, it is not holedHoled: When a ball is at rest in the hole after a stroke and the entire ball is below the surface of the putting green.(...Continued).

However, if a player removes a ball from the holeHole: The finishing point on the putting green for the hole being played:(...Continued) that is still moving (such as circling or bouncing in the bottom of the holeHole: The finishing point on the putting green for the hole being played:(...Continued)), it is considered holedHoled: When a ball is at rest in the hole after a stroke and the entire ball is below the surface of the putting green.(...Continued) despite the ball not having come to rest in the holeHole: The finishing point on the putting green for the hole being played:(...Continued).

Immovable Obstruction

Immovable Obstruction/1 – Turf Around Obstruction Is Not Part of Obstruction

Any turf that is leading to an immovable obstructionImmovable Obstruction: Any obstruction that:(...Continued) or covering an immovable obstructionImmovable Obstruction: Any obstruction that:(...Continued), is not part of the obstructionObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued).

For example, a water pipe is partly underground and partly above ground. If the pipe that is underground causes the turf to be raised, the raised turf is not part of the immovable obstructionImmovable Obstruction: Any obstruction that:(...Continued).

Known or Virtually Certain

Known or Virtually Certain/1 – Applying “Known or Virtually Certain” Standard When Ball Moves

When it is not “known” what caused the ball to moveMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued), all reasonably available information must be considered and the evidence must be evaluated to determine if it is “virtually certain” that the player, opponentOpponent: The person a player competes against in a match. The term opponent applies only in match play. or outside influenceOutside Influence: Any of these people or things that can affect what happens to a player’s ball or equipment or to the course: caused the ball to moveMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued).

Depending on the circumstances, reasonably available information may include, but is not limited to:

Known or Virtually Certain/2 – Virtual Certainty Is Irrelevant if It Comes to Light After Three-Minute Search Expires

Determining whether there is knowledge or virtual certaintyKnown or Virtually Certain: The standard for deciding what happened to a player’s ball – for example, whether the ball came to rest in a penalty area, whether it moved or what caused it to move.(...Continued) must be based on evidence known to the player at the time the three-minute search time expires.

Examples of when the player’s later findings are irrelevant include when:

Known or Virtually Certain/3 – Player Unaware Ball Played by Another Player

It must be known or virtually certainKnown or Virtually Certain: The standard for deciding what happened to a player’s ball – for example, whether the ball came to rest in a penalty area, whether it moved or what caused it to move.(...Continued) that a player’s ball has been played by another player as a wrong ballWrong Ball: Any ball other than the player’s:(...Continued) to treat it as being movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued).

For example, in stroke playStroke Play: A form of play where a player or side competes against all other players or sides in the competition.(...Continued), Player A and Player B hit their tee shots into the same general location. Player A finds a ball and plays it. Player B goes forward to look for his or her ball and cannot find it. After three minutes, Player B starts back to the tee to play another ball. On the way, Player B finds Player A’s ball and knows then that Player A has played his or her ball in error.

Player A gets the general penaltyGeneral Penalty: Loss of hole in match play or two penalty strokes in stroke play. for playing a wrong ballWrong Ball: Any ball other than the player’s:(...Continued) and must then play his or her own ball (Rule 6.3c). Player A’s ball was not lostLost: The status of a ball that is not found in three minutes after the player or his or her caddie (or the player’s partner or partner’scaddie) begins to search for it.(...Continued) even though both players searched for more than three minutes because Player A did not start searching for his or her ball; the searching was for Player B’s ball. Regarding Player B’s ball, Player B’s original ball was lost and he or she must put another ball in playIn Play: The status of a player’s ball when it lies on the course and is being used in the play of a hole:(...Continued) under penalty of stroke and distanceStroke and Distance: The procedure and penalty when a player takes relief under Rules 17, 18 or 19 by playing a ball from where the previous stroke was made (see Rule 14.6).(...Continued) (Rule 18.2b), because it was not known or virtually certainKnown or Virtually Certain: The standard for deciding what happened to a player’s ball – for example, whether the ball came to rest in a penalty area, whether it moved or what caused it to move.(...Continued) when the three-minute search time expired that the ball had been played by another player.

Loose Impediment

Loose Impediment/1 – Status of Fruit

Fruit that is detached from its tree or bush is a loose impedimentLoose Impediment: Any unattached natural object such as:(...Continued), even if the fruit is from a bush or tree not found on the courseCourse: The entire area of play within the edge of any boundaries set by the Committee:(...Continued).

For example, fruit that has been partially eaten or cut into pieces, and the skin that has been peeled from a piece of fruit are loose impedimentsLoose Impediment: Any unattached natural object such as:(...Continued). But, when being carried by a player, it is his or her equipmentEquipment: Anything used, worn, held or carried by the player or the player’s caddie.(...Continued).

Loose Impediment/2 – When Loose Impediment Becomes Obstruction

Loose impedimentsLoose Impediment: Any unattached natural object such as:(...Continued) may be transformed into obstructionsObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued) through the processes of construction or manufacturing.

For example, a log (loose impedimentLoose Impediment: Any unattached natural object such as:(...Continued)) that has been split and had legs attached has been changed by construction into a bench (obstructionObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued)).

Loose Impediment/3 – Status of Saliva

Saliva may be treated as either temporary waterTemporary Water: Any temporary accumulation of water on the surface of the ground (such as puddles from rain or irrigation or an overflow from a body of water) that:(...Continued) or a loose impedimentLoose Impediment: Any unattached natural object such as:(...Continued), at the option of the player.

Loose Impediment/4 – Loose Impediments Used to Surface a Road

Gravel is a loose impedimentLoose Impediment: Any unattached natural object such as:(...Continued) and a player may remove loose impedimentsLoose Impediment: Any unattached natural object such as:(...Continued) under Rule 15.1a. This right is not affected by the fact that, when a road is covered with gravel, it becomes an artificially surfaced road, making it an immovable obstructionImmovable Obstruction: Any obstruction that:(...Continued). The same principle applies to roads or paths constructed with stone, crushed shell, wood chips or the like.

In such a situation, the player may:

The player may also remove some gravel from the road to determine the possibility of playing the ball as it lies before choosing to take free relief.

Loose Impediment/5 – Living Insect Is Never Sticking to a Ball

Although dead insects may be considered to be sticking to a ball, living insects are never considered to be sticking to a ball, whether they are stationary or moving. Therefore, live insects on a ball are loose impedimentsLoose Impediment: Any unattached natural object such as:(...Continued).

Lost

Lost/1 – Ball May Not Be Declared Lost

A player may not make a ball lostLost: The status of a ball that is not found in three minutes after the player or his or her caddie (or the player’s partner or partner’scaddie) begins to search for it.(...Continued) by a declaration. A ball is lostLost: The status of a ball that is not found in three minutes after the player or his or her caddie (or the player’s partner or partner’scaddie) begins to search for it.(...Continued) only when it has not been found within three minutes after the player or his or her caddieCaddie: Someone who helps a player during a round, including in these ways:(...Continued) or partnerPartner: A player who competes together with another player as a side, in either match play or stroke play. begins to search for it.

For example, a player searches for his or her ball for two minutes, declares it lostLost: The status of a ball that is not found in three minutes after the player or his or her caddie (or the player’s partner or partner’scaddie) begins to search for it.(...Continued) and walks back to play another ball. Before the player puts another ball in playIn Play: The status of a player’s ball when it lies on the course and is being used in the play of a hole:(...Continued), the original ball is found within the three-minute search time. Since the player may not declare his or her ball lostLost: The status of a ball that is not found in three minutes after the player or his or her caddie (or the player’s partner or partner’scaddie) begins to search for it.(...Continued), the original ball remains in playIn Play: The status of a player’s ball when it lies on the course and is being used in the play of a hole:(...Continued).

Lost/2 – Player May Not Delay the Start of Search to Gain an Advantage

The three-minute search time for a ball starts when the player or his or her caddieCaddie: Someone who helps a player during a round, including in these ways:(...Continued) (or the player’s partnerPartner: A player who competes together with another player as a side, in either match play or stroke play. or partner’sPartner: A player who competes together with another player as a side, in either match play or stroke play. caddieCaddie: Someone who helps a player during a round, including in these ways:(...Continued)) starts to search for it. The player may not delay the start of the search in order to gain an advantage by allowing other people to search on his or her behalf.

For example, if a player is walking towards his or her ball and spectators are already looking for the ball, the player cannot deliberately delay getting to the area to keep the three-minute search time from starting. In such circumstances, the search time starts when the player would have been in a position to search had he or she not deliberately delayed getting to the area.

Lost/3 – Search Time Continues When Player Returns to Play a Provisional Ball

If a player has started to search for his or her ball and is returning to the spot of the previous strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) to play a provisional ballProvisional Ball: Another ball played in case the ball just played by the player may be:(...Continued), the three-minute search time continues whether or not anyone continues to search for the player’s ball.

Lost/4 – Search Time When Searching for Two Balls

When a player has played two balls (such as the ball in playIn Play: The status of a player’s ball when it lies on the course and is being used in the play of a hole:(...Continued) and a provisional ballProvisional Ball: Another ball played in case the ball just played by the player may be:(...Continued)) and is searching for both, whether the player is allowed two separate three-minute search times depends how close the balls are to each other.

If the balls are in the same area where they can be searched for at the same time, the player is allowed only three minutes to search for both balls. However, if the balls are in different areas (such as opposite sides of the fairway) the player is allowed a three-minute search time for each ball.

Movable Obstruction

Movable Obstruction/1 – Abandoned Ball Is a Movable Obstruction

An abandoned ball is a movable obstructionMovable Obstruction: An obstruction that can be moved with reasonable effort and without damaging the obstruction or the course.(...Continued).

Moved

Moved/1 – When Ball Resting on Object Has Moved

For the purpose of deciding whether a ball must be replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play.(...Continued) or whether a player gets a penalty, a ball is treated as having movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued) only if it has movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued) in relation to a specific part of the larger condition or object it is resting on, unless the entire object the ball is resting on has moved in relation to the ground.

An example of when a ball has not movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued) includes when:

Examples of when a ball has movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued) include when:

Moved/2 – Television Evidence Shows Ball at Rest Changed Position but by Amount Not Reasonably Discernible to Naked Eye

When determining whether or not a ball at rest has movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued), a player must make that judgment based on all the information reasonably available to him or her at the time, so that he or she can determine whether the ball must be replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play.(...Continued) under the Rules. When the player’s ball has left its original position and come to rest in another place by an amount that was not reasonably discernible to the naked eye at the time, a player’s determination that the ball has not movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued) is conclusive, even if that determination is later shown to be incorrect through the use of sophisticated technology.

On the other hand, if the CommitteeCommittee: The person or group in charge of the competition or the course.(...Continued) determines, based on all of the evidence it has available, that the ball changed its position by an amount that was reasonably discernible to the naked eye at the time, the ball will be determined to have movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued) even though no-one actually saw it moveMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued).

Nearest Point of Complete Relief

Nearest Point of Complete Relief/1 – Diagrams Illustrating Nearest Point of Complete Relief

In the diagrams, the term “nearest point of complete relief” in Rule 16.1 (Abnormal Course Conditions) for relief from interference by ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) is illustrated in the case of both a right-handed and a left-handed player.

The nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued) must be strictly interpreted. A player is not allowed to choose on which side of the ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) the ball will be droppedDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play.(...Continued), unless there are two equidistant nearest points of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued). Even if one side of the ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) is fairway and the other is bushes, if the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued) is in the bushes, then that is the player’s nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued).

Nearest Point of Complete Relief/2 – Player Does Not Follow Recommended Procedure in Determining Nearest Point of Complete Relief

Although there is a recommended procedure for determining the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued), the Rules do not require a player to determine this point when taking relief under a relevant Rule (such as when taking relief from an abnormal course conditionAbnormal Course Condition: Any of these four defined conditions: under Rule 16.1b (Relief for Ball in General Area)). If a player does not determine a nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued) accurately or identifies an incorrect nearest point of complete relief, the player only gets a penalty if this results in him or her droppingDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play.(...Continued) a ball into a relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued) that does not satisfy the requirements of the Rule and the ball is then played.

Nearest Point of Complete Relief/3 – Whether Player Has Taken Relief Incorrectly If Condition Still Interferes for Stroke with Club Not Used to Determine Nearest Point of Complete Relief

When a player is taking relief from an abnormal course conditionAbnormal Course Condition: Any of these four defined conditions:, he or she is taking relief only for interference that he or she had with the club, stanceStance: The position of a player’s feet and body in preparing for and making a stroke., swing and line of playLine of Play: The line where the player intends his or her ball to go after a stroke, including the area on that line that is a reasonable distance up above the ground and on either side of that line.(...Continued) that would have been used to play the ball from that spot. After the player has taken relief and there is no longer interference for the strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) the player would have made, any further interference is a new situation.

For example, the player’s ball lies in heavy rough in the general areaGeneral Area: The area of the course that covers all of the courseexcept for the other four defined areas: (1) the teeing area the player must play from in starting the hole he or she is playing, (2) all penalty areas, (3) all bunkers, and (4) the putting green of the hole the player is playing.(...Continued) approximately 230 yards from the greenPutting Green: The area on the hole the player is playing that:(...Continued). The player selects a wedge to make the next strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) and finds that his or her stanceStance: The position of a player’s feet and body in preparing for and making a stroke. touches a line defining an area of ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued). The player determines the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued) and dropsDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play.(...Continued) a ball in the prescribed relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued) according to Rule 14.3b(3) (Ball Must Be Dropped in Relief Area) and Rule 16.1 (Relief from Abnormal Course Conditions).

The ball rolls into a good lieLie: The spot on which a ball is at rest and any growing or attached natural object, immovable obstruction, integral object, or boundary object touching the ball or right next to it.(...Continued) within the relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued) from where the player believes that the next strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) could be played with a 3-wood. If the player used a wedge for the next strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) there would be no interference from the ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued). However, using the 3-wood, the player again touches the line defining the ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) with his or her foot. This is a new situation and the player may play the ball as it lies or take relief for the new situation.

Nearest Point of Complete Relief/4 – Player Determines Nearest Point of Complete Relief but Is Physically Unable to Make Intended Stroke

The purpose of determining the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued) is to find a reference point in a location that is as near as possible to where the interfering condition no longer interferes. In determining the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued), the player is not guaranteed a good or playable lieLie: The spot on which a ball is at rest and any growing or attached natural object, immovable obstruction, integral object, or boundary object touching the ball or right next to it.(...Continued).

For example, if a player is unable to make a strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) from what appears to be the required relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued) as measured from the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued) because either the direction of play is blocked by a tree, or the player is unable to take the backswing for the intended strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) due to a bush, this does not change the fact that the identified point is the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued).

After the ball is in playIn Play: The status of a player’s ball when it lies on the course and is being used in the play of a hole:(...Continued), the player must then decide what type of strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) he or she will make. This strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued), which includes the choice of club, may be different than the one that would have been made from the ball’s original spot had the condition not been there.

If it is not physically possible to dropDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play.(...Continued) the ball in any part of the identified relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued), the player is not allowed relief from the condition.

Nearest Point of Complete Relief/5 – Player Physically Unable to Determine Nearest Point of Complete Relief

If a player is physically unable to determine his or her nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued), it must be estimated, and the relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued) is then based on the estimated point.

For example, in taking relief under Rule 16.1, a player is physically unable to determine the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued) because that point is within the trunk of a tree or a boundary fence prevents the player from adopting the required stanceStance: The position of a player’s feet and body in preparing for and making a stroke..

The player must estimate the nearest point of complete reliefNearest Point of Complete Relief: The reference point for taking free relief from an abnormal course condition (Rule 16.1), dangerous animal condition (Rule 16.2), wrong green (Rule 13.1f) or no play zone (Rules 16.1f and 17.1e), or in taking relief under certain Local Rules.(...Continued) and drop a ball in the identified relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued).

If it is not physically possible to dropDrop: To hold the ball and let go of it so that it falls through the air, with the intent for the ball to be in play.(...Continued) the ball in the identified relief areaRelief Area: The area where a player must drop a ball when taking relief under a Rule. Each relief Rule requires the player to use a specific relief area whose size and location are based on these three factors:(...Continued), the player is not allowed relief under Rule 16.1.

No Play Zone

No Play Zone/1 – Status of Growing Things Overhanging a No Play Zone

The status of growing things that overhang a no play zoneNo Play Zone: A part of the course where the Committee has prohibited play. A no play zone must be defined as part of either an abnormal course condition or a penalty area.(...Continued) depends on the type of no play zoneNo Play Zone: A part of the course where the Committee has prohibited play. A no play zone must be defined as part of either an abnormal course condition or a penalty area.(...Continued). This will matter since the growing things may be part of the no play zoneNo Play Zone: A part of the course where the Committee has prohibited play. A no play zone must be defined as part of either an abnormal course condition or a penalty area.(...Continued), in which case the player is required to take relief.

For example, if a no play zoneNo Play Zone: A part of the course where the Committee has prohibited play. A no play zone must be defined as part of either an abnormal course condition or a penalty area.(...Continued) has been defined as a penalty areaPenalty Area: An area from which relief with a one-stroke penalty is allowed if the player’s ball comes to rest there.(...Continued) (where the edges extend above and below the ground), any part of a growing object that extends beyond the edges of the no play zoneNo Play Zone: A part of the course where the Committee has prohibited play. A no play zone must be defined as part of either an abnormal course condition or a penalty area.(...Continued) is not part of the no play zoneNo Play Zone: A part of the course where the Committee has prohibited play. A no play zone must be defined as part of either an abnormal course condition or a penalty area.(...Continued). However, if a no play zoneNo Play Zone: A part of the course where the Committee has prohibited play. A no play zone must be defined as part of either an abnormal course condition or a penalty area.(...Continued) has been defined as ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) (which includes all ground inside the defined area and anything growing that extends above the ground and outside the edges), anything overhanging the edge is part of the no play zoneNo Play Zone: A part of the course where the Committee has prohibited play. A no play zone must be defined as part of either an abnormal course condition or a penalty area.(...Continued).

Obstruction

Obstruction/1 – Status of Paint Dots and Paint Lines

Although artificial objects are obstructionsObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued) so long as they are not boundary objectsBoundary Object: Artificial objects defining or showing out of bounds, such as walls, fences, stakes and railings, from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued) or integral objectsIntegral Object: An artificial object defined by the Committee as part of the challenge of playing the course from which free relief is not allowed.(...Continued), paint dots and paint lines are not obstructionsObstruction: Any artificial object except for integral objects and boundary objects.(...Continued).

Sometimes paint dots and lines are used for purposes other than course marking (such as indicating the front and back of putting greensPutting Green: The area on the hole the player is playing that:(...Continued)). Such dots and lines are not an abnormal course conditionAbnormal Course Condition: Any of these four defined conditions: unless the CommitteeCommittee: The person or group in charge of the competition or the course.(...Continued) declares them to be ground under repairGround Under Repair: Any part of the course the Committee defines to be ground under repair (whether by marking it or otherwise). Any defined ground under repair includes both:(...Continued) (see Committee Procedures; Model Local Rule F-21).

Outside Influence

Outside Influence/1 – Status of Air and Water When Artificially Propelled

Although wind and water are natural forcesNatural Forces: The effects of nature such as wind, water or when something happens for no apparent reason because of the effects of gravity. and not outside influencesOutside Influence: Any of these people or things that can affect what happens to a player’s ball or equipment or to the course:, artificially propelled air and water are outside influencesOutside Influence: Any of these people or things that can affect what happens to a player’s ball or equipment or to the course:.

Examples include:

Replace

Replace/1 – Ball May Not Be Replaced with a Club

For a ball to be replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play.(...Continued) in a right way, it must be set down and let go. This means the player must use his or her hand to put the ball back in playIn Play: The status of a player’s ball when it lies on the course and is being used in the play of a hole:(...Continued) on the spot it was lifted or movedMoved: When a ball at rest has left its original spot and come to rest on any other spot, and this can be seen by the naked eye (whether or not anyone actually sees it do so).(...Continued) from.

For example, if a player lifts his or her ball from the putting greenPutting Green: The area on the hole the player is playing that:(...Continued) and sets it aside, the player must not replaceReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play.(...Continued) the ball by rolling it to the required spot with a club. If he or she does so, the ball is not replacedReplace: To place a ball by setting it down and letting it go, with the intent for it to be in play.(...Continued) in the right way and the player gets one penalty stroke under Rule 14.2b(2) (How Ball Must Be Replaced) if the mistake is not corrected before the strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) is made.

Stroke

Stroke/1 – Determining If a Stroke Was Made

If a player starts the downswing with a club intending to strike the ball, his or her action counts as a strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) when:

The player’s action does not count as a strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) in each of following situations:

Wrong Ball

Wrong Ball/1 – Part of Wrong Ball Is Still Wrong Ball

If a player makes a strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) at part of a stray ball that he or she mistakenly thought was the ball in playIn Play: The status of a player’s ball when it lies on the course and is being used in the play of a hole:(...Continued), he or she has made a strokeStroke: The forward movement of the club made to strike the ball.(...Continued) at a wrong ballWrong Ball: Any ball other than the player’s:(...Continued) and Rule 6.3c applies.