New Golf Rules 2019: All You Need To Know

The R&A and USGA have revealed the new golf rules to be implemented on 1st January 2019.


The dropping procedure. From 1st Jan 2019, when taking relief golfers will now drop from knee height – no longer shoulder height.

There will no longer be a penalty for double-hitting a shot. Golfers will simply count the single stroke they took to strike the ball, rather than counting two shots for hitting the ball twice.

There will be no penalty for accidentally moving your ball on the putting green or when looking for it. A player is not responsible for causing a ball to move unless it is “virtually certain” that they did.

The flagstick no longer has to be attended or removed when putting and there will be no penalty if a golfer hits an unattended flagstick in the hole.

Golfers will be allowed to repair spike marks as well as other damage on the putting green. There is also no penalty for touching the line of a putt.

Golfers can now touch the ground with their club in a hazard and can move loose impediments in a hazard without penalty.

Golfers can move loose impediments in bunkers and will not be penalised for generally grounding their club away from their ball.

The 5 minute golf ball search time has been scrapped. From 1st Jan 2019, golfers will be allowed only 3 minutes to search for a strayed golf ball.

Golf’s governing bodies are also encouraging ready golf in stroke play and recommend golfers take no longer than 40 seconds over a shot.

The Golf Group has accepted the mandatory changes as advised by the R & A but has not adopted all local rules.

Local Rule Change: F-17. The public footpath running parallel to the pit on 5/14 is an immovable obstruction. Free relief is allowed under rule 16-1.

Download The Players Version of the New Rules (15.2Mb)