Slow play

JamesR

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Causes of slow play:

- people who take a lot of shots
- people who walk slowly
- people who try to impersonate the pros (multiple practice swings, aimpoint etc etc)
- lost balls after not playing a prov'
- difficult course set up, incl':
- fast greens
- deep rough
- difficult pin positions (tucked in corners, on on steep slopes)
 

sweaty sock

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Pretty sure the r and a have studied this to death

1. Tee times too close so too many people on the course. Recommendation is 9 minutes minimum, more if the first hole is a par 3

2. Gaps on the course caused by groups not keeping up with the group infront.

Point 1 Modtly sets how fast you can go,
Point 2 Determines if you acieve or not
 

BiMGuy

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How times change.
When I was a teenager [1960's] over two and a half hours around a championship par72 course was considered slow.
I find statements like this very hard to believe. Playing well, on my own, on an empty course it took me that long to get round my home course.

The easiest way to speed up play is to limit what people take on the course with them.
Pencil bags should be mandatory, no buggies or trolleys, 8 clubs is more than enough, 3 balls maximum per round. Lose them and your done.
Then a few rule changes.
People should only be allowed to look for their own ball. Everyone else carries on playing whilst you look.
Once the first member of the group reaches the green you have a maximum of 2 minutes to finish the hole.
First person to putt continues till they hole out, then the next plays and a on.
You are only allowed to touch your ball on the tee, and picking out of the hole.
No halfway house. Take what you need with you.
Leave the flag in, no raking bunkers.

Sounds fun, but we’ll be round in record time.
 

Biggleswade Blue

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There is an obsession amongst a few with playing fast. When I play i want to enjoy myself - I don't want to be in a race to finish, as I like playing.

However, I am also paranoid about holding people up. I have never had anyone tell me off for being slow, or for being in a slow group, but I do always feel a pressure as soon as I see a group closing, or a group pulling away. That pressure is self imposed.

On Saturday I was in a 3-ball where all of us were high handicaps (20-25) none of us played especially well, and it felt slow to me, not that it felt like there was anything we could do about it. We took about 3 3/4 hrs, including letting through a group of 3 on the 3rd who were all good players and were playing off the forward tees. We were playing 15th as they were playing 17th, so we didn't drop too far back. The group behind us felt like it was closing for most of the round though I did spot once or twice towards the last few holes they were waiting for us to clear greens, but only briefly. The once or twice we could have stepped aside for them actually they weren't in a position to come through, so it was better we just kept going.

It's hard to get the balance right between enjoying it, playing our best, and not ruining anyone elses day.
 

Backsticks

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People walked to their ball and hit it. Aping the pros, who play 5 hour rounds, will lead to 5 hour rounds for ams. Because they now add on the same mannerisms and delays. There is no mystery about it. How many golfers used aimpoint in the 1960s ? How many golfers stood for 10s a few yards behind their ball holding the club vertically to align with the hole like marshals of a marching band ? Who took two full routine practice swings in the 1950s ?
 

BiMGuy

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People walked to their ball and hit it. Aping the pros, who play 5 hour rounds, will lead to 5 hour rounds for ams. Because they now add on the same mannerisms and delays. There is no mystery about it. How many golfers used aimpoint in the 1960s ? How many golfers stood for 10s a few yards behind their ball holding the club vertically to align with the hole like marshals of a marching band ? Who took two full routine practice swings in the 1950s ?
Yet all the people I get stuck behind do none of that.

They are just slow. Some I’ve seen plum bobbing. But mostly they are just slow and inefficient at moving around a golf course.
 

paddyjk

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I'm not sure I can honestly believe tales of 4 balls going round in 3 hours or so back in the good old days. It just doesn't sound possible unless you're running between shots and not missing a single fairway.
 

Backsticks

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Yet all the people I get stuck behind do none of that.

They are just slow. Some I’ve seen plum bobbing. But mostly they are just slow and inefficient at moving around a golf course.
The pace of human walk has not changed over the last century. The time for a golf swing has not changed. The mind has not slowed down. So people play golf, purely golf, at the same pace as they always have.
There is a difference between time to play a round, and slow play (waiting on the group ahead). Longer courses (the equipment mistake 20 years ago is to blame for that), and tougher courses, have added to the time per round.
But not to slow play. The golfers themselves, playing every shot as if it were the last hole of the British Open, have only themselves to blame for that.
Shoeing people along will not solve that.
 

paddyjk

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The pace of human walk has not changed over the last century. The time for a golf swing has not changed. The mind has not slowed down. So people play golf, purely golf, at the same pace as they always have.
There is a difference between time to play a round, and slow play (waiting on the group ahead). Longer courses (the equipment mistake 20 years ago is to blame for that), and tougher courses, have added to the time per round.
But not to slow play. The golfers themselves, playing every shot as if it were the last hole of the British Open, have only themselves to blame for that.
Shoeing people along will not solve that.
It's just not what happens on the golf course. I know a few people who take an age to hit the ball and it's for a number of reasons, but pretending to be a pro isn't one.
 

DeanoMK

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I'm a quick golfer, not that I rush, but I make every effort to be ready to play when it's my turn.

I find it laughable to see people putting the blame on the use of rangefinders, that's just nonsense.

You're either a slow player or you're not. I've played with quick high handicap players and slow low handicap players.

I've been stuck behind junior golfers a few times lately and they all do the same thing; elaborate pre-shot routines with 11 practice swings, reading putts from 30 different angles - but they're just copying what they see on the TV.
 

Hobbit

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One thing many people miss when discussing rangefinders, eying up putts from several angles and or questionable pre-shot routines. How much time do they save by getting the distance/line right as opposed to getting it wrong and having to play another shot?

Its those that follow you to your ball chatting before they go to their ball, and its those who haven’t zapped the yardage whilst you are choosing your club, and it’s those who don’t look at their putt till you’ve putted.
 
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timd77

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Played in a 3 ball comp Saturday, busy course. On the 3rd hole 2 of us hit balls into trouble and were searching for a couple of mins each, managed to find them. Group behind gained on us a little bit and the group ahead pulled away a touch. On the next hole one of the other chaps was in trouble again but found it fairly quickly, and by the end of that hole the group behind had caught us up and the group ahead were out of touch. A quick conversation between the 3 of us that we needed to make up a bit of time, ready golf, walk slightly ahead to your own ball etc etc and we were back on track with 2 holes. Went round in under 4 hours for a busy comp, spot on.

Just comes down to awareness for me. You know when your group is lagging and you need to adjust accordingly.
 

yandabrown

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Played in a 3 ball comp Saturday, busy course. On the 3rd hole 2 of us hit balls into trouble and were searching for a couple of mins each, managed to find them. Group behind gained on us a little bit and the group ahead pulled away a touch. On the next hole one of the other chaps was in trouble again but found it fairly quickly, and by the end of that hole the group behind had caught us up and the group ahead were out of touch. A quick conversation between the 3 of us that we needed to make up a bit of time, ready golf, walk slightly ahead to your own ball etc etc and we were back on track with 2 holes. Went round in under 4 hours for a busy comp, spot on.

Just comes down to awareness for me. You know when your group is lagging and you need to adjust accordingly.
but why can't everyone do that all the time?
 

RichA

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I'm a quick golfer, not that I rush, but I make every effort to be ready to play when it's my turn.

I find it laughable to see people putting the blame on the use of rangefinders, that's just nonsense.

You're either a slow player or you're not. I've played with quick high handicap players and slow low handicap players.

I've been stuck behind junior golfers a few times lately and they all do the same thing; elaborate pre-shot routines with 11 practice swings, reading putts from 30 different angles - but they're just copying what they see on the TV.
Yep. Slow golf is caused by slow golfers, not necessarily the equipment they're using slowly.
They are the same people who get to the bar just ahead of you and only then start asking their mates what they want to drink and only start digging around for their wallet after the last drink has been poured.
 

Dando

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At foxhills yesterday,after the half way hut stop the 4 ball in front of us fell a hole behind after 2 holes.

They played off the back tees and waited until the group in front were 400 yards away
 

rulefan

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At foxhills yesterday,after the half way hut stop the 4 ball in front of us fell a hole behind after 2 holes.

They played off the back tees and waited until the group in front were 400 yards away
So they were always (?) 400 yards behind.
 

Grizzly

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As far as I have noticed, whilst a lot of what others have posted here is right, or at least a contributory factor, the real issue is a frequent lack of proper golfing etiquette. We can all accept that sometimes a ball gets lost; but to then spend more than three minutes looking for it? Worse, to have multiple balls lost and want more than three minutes for each. And never to even consider letting a group play through you whilst you look. At my course, we have two bottlenecks - one is early in the round and resolves itself naturally, the other is our 13th, a Par 3. On the tee is a huge notice about calling groups up from the green, which would almost completely solve the issue...does anyone do so? Do they heck!

It extends to things like parking trollies on the wrong side of thee green. Playing on when you can no longer score. Basically, some groups have assumed that they can do as they please with no thought to the groups behind them.
 
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