Section 4: Rules of Play


Rules of Play


The Rules of the United States Golf Association shall govern play, as modified by the South Central PGA Junior Golf Committee. In the Rules of Golf, the gender used in relation to any person is understood to include both genders. The following are the Rules of Play (unless otherwise stated).


Junior Tour


  • Play the ball as it lies.
  • All participants must walk-caddies are not permitted. The South Central PGA Junior Tour permits pull carts, however they will be allowed only at the discretion of the host facility. It is the players’ responsibility to obtain course policy.
  • Advice may not be given.
  • Participants must exchange score cards with fellow competitors in the group.
  • Any player who has taken 10 (10) strokes on any hole and has not holed out must pick up his/her ball and proceed to the next tee. The score must be recorded as a ten (10) and does not exclude the participant from award consideration.
  • Doubt as to Procedure— Rule 3-3: “In stroke play, if a competitor is doubtful of his/her rights or the correct procedure during the play of a hole, he/she may, without penalty, complete the hole with two balls.After the doubtful situation has arisen and before taking further action, the competitor must announce to his/her marker or a fellow-competitor that he intends to play two balls and which ball he/she wishes to count if the Rules permit. The competitor must report the facts of the situation to the Committee before returning his/her score card. If he/she fails to do so, he/she is disqualified.”
  • Upon completion of the round, players must immediately proceed to the scoring area to return their score card. Participants are responsible for the correct hole-by-hole score and two signatures on the score card.
  • For Junior Tour events, a player may obtain distance information by using a device that measures distance only.
  • Players must NOT wear headphones during play. Listening to music during a stipulated round will result in disqualification.
  • Allow the host facility staff to administer rulings. Spectators will be brought into a situation ONLY if the staff member asks for assistance.
  • When on the course, spectators and players must turn off cell phones or turn ringers to the silent or vibrate mode. Respect host facility’s policy if cell phones are not allowed.
  • Each Junior Tour competition shall be deemed to have closed when all scores have been approved and published on Blue Golf.


Players Tour



(Revised 2/10/15)


The Rules of the United States Golf Association govern play, as modified by the South Central PGA Players Tour. The following Conditions of Competition and Local Rules apply and may be found in the current Appendix 1 of the USGA Rules of Golf as referenced on page numbers below. See applicable competition's "Notice to Competitors (Players)" for additional Definitions, Local Rules, and Conditions. In the Rules of Golf, the gender used in relation to any person is understood to include both genders.


Unless otherwise noted, the penalty for breach of a Local Rule or Condition is:


Match Play - Loss of Hole; Stroke Play - Two Strokes.




GOLF BALLS: It is a condition of the competition that players must use a brand of ball on the current USGA List of Conforming Golf Balls.

  1. Penalty for breach of this condition is disqualification.
  2. The one ball rule is NOT in effect.


DRIVER: It is a condition of the competition that any driver the player carries must have a clubhead identified by model and loft that is named on the current USGA List of Conforming Driver Heads.

  1. Penalty for carrying a non-conforming club is two strokes per hole for a maximum of four strokes per round. In match play, the state of the match is adjusted by deducting one hole for each hole at which a breach occurred; maximum deduction per round is two holes.
  2. Penalty for using a non-conforming club is disqualification.


GROOVE AND PUNCH MARK SPECIFICATIONS: The player’s clubs must conform to the groove and punch mark specifications in the Rules of Golf that are effective from January 1, 2010.


DISCONTINUANCE OF PLAY: Optional condition as prescribed an Appendix I is in effect. Reference Rule 6-8, 6-8b and its note.

  1. Suspension for a dangerous situation: One long prolonged siren or airhorn note.
  2. All other types of suspensions (i.e. for darkness): Three consecutive airhorn notes.
  3. Resumption of play: Two airhorn notes.
  4. When play has been suspended for a dangerous situation, all practice facilities are deemed to be closed until declared open by the Committee.


PRACTICE BETWEEN HOLES: Practice between holes is NOT authorized in stroke play competitions. Reference Rule 7-2 and note 2.


CADDIES/GOLF CARS: Except when permitted by the SCPGA players are prohibited from using caddies or golf cars without prior medical approval. Players are responsible for carrying their own bag during the competitive round. In stroke play, penalty for breach of this rule is two strokes per hole, maximum of four strokes per round. In stroke play, use of any unauthorized caddie or golf car shall be discontinued immediately upon discovering that a breach has occurred. Otherwise, the player shall be disqualified.


TRANSPORTATION: Optional Condition as prescribed in Appendix I is in effect. Exception: a player may ride in designated shuttles, and may accept transportation from a Rules Official.


SPECIAL CONDITIONS: Shoes with metal or traditionally-designed spikes (regardless of composition) are PROHIBITED during the stipulated round. Penalty for breach of this rule is disqualification.



  1. In stroke play, competitions are deemed to have closed when all scores have been approved by the Committee or a winner has been announced.
  2. In match play, the result of a match is considered to have been “officially announced” when the Committee has approved the result as posted on the public scoreboard.




DISTANCE MEASURING DEVICES: Distance Measuring Devices, that measure or gauge distance only, are permitted in accordance with Decision 14-3/0.5.


EMBEDDED BALL THROUGH THE GREEN: Local Rule as prescribed in Appendix I is in effect.
a)Through the green, a ball that is embedded in its own pitch-mark in the ground, except sand, may be lifted, without penalty, cleaned and dropped as near as possible to where it lay but not nearer the hole.


WOOD CHIPS AND MULCH: Wood chips and mulch are loose impediments (unless otherwise provided in the Notice to Competitors).


STONES IN BUNKERS: Stones in bunkers are deemed to be movable obstructions.


UNDUE DELAY: Reference Rule 6-7 and separate SCPGA Pace of Play Policy.



  1. Out of bounds is defined by the inside edge of white stakes and/or property fence posts at ground level. When defined by a white line, the line itself is out of bounds.
  2. The inside edge of a paved road or curb defines out of bounds. A ball that is on or beyond the road or curb is out of bounds, even though it may lie on another part of the golf course.


WATER AND LATERAL WATER HAZARD STAKES AND LINES: When a water hazard or a lateral water hazard is defined on only one side, it is deemed to extend to infinity. When a water hazard or lateral water hazard is bounded by out of bounds, the hazard margin extends to and coincides with the out of bounds line.


ROADS AND PATHS: Curbing and artificial materials bordering cart paths are considered part of the obstruction. White-lined areas tying into roads (not defining out of bounds) and paths are part of the obstruction.


TEMPORARY IMMOVABLE OBSTRUCTIONS: All scoring areas, which include the tent, the stake and rope surrounding the tent and any objects such as the table and chairs located within the stake and rope, are deemed to be temporary immovable obstructions.


GROUND UNDER REPAIR: Ground under repair is defined by white lines. Other areas of ground under repair, even when not marked, include:

  1. French drains, which are trenches filled with rocks or stones.
  2. Fire ant beds or mounds (Note: For a player whose ball is in a water hazard and is affected by a fire ant bed or mound, see Decision 1-4/10).


SOD SEAMS: Except in a hazard, sod seams (not the sod itself) are deemed to be ground under repair, and relief is available under Rule 25-1 if the ball lies in or touches a sod seam or the sod seam interferes with the area of intended swing. All seams within the sodded area are considered the same seam.


INTEGRAL PART OF THE COURSE: Integral parts of the course are areas on the course from which relief is not granted. Integral parts of the golf course include (unless otherwise provided in the Notice to Competitors):

  1. Cables, rods, wires or wrappings when closely attached to trees.
  2. Artificial walls and pilings when located in hazards.


Distance Measuring Devices


The SCPGA Junior Tour and Players Tour will allow the use of devices that measure only distance in all events. A player may obtain distance information by using a device that measures distance only.


If, during a stipulated round, a player uses a distance-measuring device that is designed to gauge or measure other conditions that might affect his/her play (e.g., gradient, wind-speed, temperature, etc.), the player is in breach of Rule 14-3, for which penalty is disqualification, regardless of whether any such additional function is actually used. A multifunctional device such as a PDA or Smartphone may be used as a distance measuring device as long as the application measures distance only.


NOTE:Applications that also assist the player in his play e.g. videoing swing for analysis or gauging green contours are not permitted.


All devices used must be of a handheld variety, carried by the player. Use of GPS yardage systems installed on golf carts will not be permitted at any time. Spectators must not relay any yardage information displayed by a GPS system in a golf cart.


A player who breaches this policy will be deemed to have violated the SCPGA Junior Code of Conduct and will be subjected to the following penalties:


FIRST OFFENSE: One (1) stroke penalty

SECOND OFFENSE: Two (2) stroke penalty

THIRD OFFENSE: Disqualification.


Additionally, players may share their distance measuring device and information pertaining to yardage with fellow competitors at their discretion provided such action does not cause an undue delay.


Should there be a question on the legality of a certain distance measuring device, it is recommended that all players contact the SCPGA office and speak with a member of the SCPGA staff.