In or Out of Bounds January 06 2012

The rules state; A ball is out of bounds when all of it lies out of bounds. It sounds a simple rule but can become quite a protracted and sometimes heated discussion. If the out of bounds marker is a white line and a part of the ball is still in bounds, although it is resting on the line, it is deemed to be in bounds. If the out of bounds markers are just white posts it is much harder to define if a part of the ball is actually in bounds, especially if the white pegs are quite far apart. With the white marker posts the out of bounds line extends in a straight line from one peg to the next. Sometimes even with all four players looking down the line it is a very tight call to make, often leading to the aforementioned quarrels. I personally think it would be better to also use a white line between the posts so as to avoid the confusion. These white posts may not be removed to aid with your stroke, they are deemed to be fixed. Also if you think your ball may have gone out of bounds or otherwise lost, it is advisable to invoke Golf Rule 27 and play a provisional ball. This will save time and avoid the long walk back to replay the shot from the original position. Another contentious and usually frustrating area is the rules concerning water hazards, what is the difference with regards to dropping your ball. Water hazards are marked with Yellow stakes and or lines, and the ball has to be dropped behind this hazard, keeping the hazard between the dropped ball and the green. This sometimes leads to arguments as possibly the area behind the hazard is rough ground making it an even harder shot. With lateral water hazards, marked by red lines and or posts, you are able to drop out from any side, not nearer the hole. Another point to keep in mind when encountering either Yellow or Red posts is that you may remove them to aid your swing if necessary. My course at Paraparaumu Beach Golf Club has a particularly annoyingly placed yellow hazard which has started many a discussion as how to proceed. If you are intending to play at the club and wish to know where this hazard is located please reply to this post and I can enlighten you.