What is ready golf, and how does it help speed up the pace of play in golf?
Golf Culture

What is ready golf, and how does it help speed up the pace of play in golf?

Mayakoba Golf Classic - Final Round PLAYA DEL CARMEN, MEXICO - DECEMBER 06: Viktor Hovland of Norway looks on over the 13th green during the final round of the Mayakoba Golf Classic at El Camaleón Golf Club on December 06, 2020 in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images)


If you've played golf enough times, you've no doubt heard the expression: "We're playing ready golf."

However, if you haven't played golf a lot of times or have a lot of golf experience, then you might not know what ready golf is or what it means. We're here to help explain what playing ready golf means and how it can improve your experience of playing golf.

What does it mean to play ready golf?

Playing ready golf is a way of playing golf faster. Traditionally, and under the Rules of Golf, the order of play in golf is decided in two ways:

On the tee shot of a hole, the player who goes first is the player with the lowest score on the previous hole (or, in the event of a tie in the previous hole, the player with the lowest outright score on the most recent prior hole with one);

On every shot after the tee shot, the player who goes next is the player whose ball is farthest from the hole.

However, when golfers play ready golf, they throw that out the window. When playing ready golf, the next golfer to hit a shot -- whether on the tee or elsewhere on a hole -- is the golfer who is ready to hit. They've done their calculations on the distance of the shot and feel ready to go with a couple of practice swings. They don't have to be the player farthest from the whole.

Ready golf enables golfers to move at a more natural pace, and it allows them to play faster because there's less waiting and looking around for players who may be the next to hit in a traditional order but are slower or distracted or just not ready to hit a shot.

Of course, not every golfer plays ready golf, and that means that your group's pace of play may not improve that much if others in front of your group are playing slowly. However, within your group, playing ready golf will typically improve the experience.

Golfers can't play ready golf, though, in a tournament. In competition, golfers are stipulated to have to play in proper order or risk being penalized for playing out of turn. So use ready golf for casual situations only.

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