What is ground under repair in golf, and do you get relief from it?
Golf Culture

What is ground under repair in golf, and do you get relief from it?

Sometimes you're playing golf, and you'll see some areas on the course that look pretty bad. Maybe there's not much grass where there should be grass -- or there's a big dirt patch where there usually isn't one.

What you might find is a big line of white paint running around the outside of these areas. What does the white paint mean? That paint is indicated that area is ground under repair. So what does that mean for you, the golfer?

What is ground under repair in golf?

In golf, ground under repair (GUR) is an area of the course that's deemed to be, well, under repair and unfit for play for golfers. The golf course you're playing can deem practically anything to be ground under repair, and the standard indication of ground under repair is white paint, a sign and/or stakes around the entirety of that ground under repair. (This can be confusing because white paint can also mark out of bounds in golf, but it should be obvious.)

Some common examples of ground under repair are:

  • A hole made by the groundskeepers in taking care of the course (digging drainage, removing trees, etc.)
  • Any animal habitat (such as a bird’s nest) that is so near your ball that your stroke or stance might damage it
  • Grass cuttings, leaves and any other material piled for later removal by grounds staff

Do you get relief from ground under repair?

Golfers get free relief from ground under repair if their ball is in it, if their stance is impacted by it or if their intended line of swing is blocked by it.

To take free relief, a golfer is to first find the nearest point of complete relief -- the spot on the course nearest to where your ball lies, no nearer the hole, where they could play their next stroke with no interference from the ground under repair. Then the golfer should drop a ball within one club length of that point not nearer the hole.


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