Golf Basics

Equipment

Golf clubs

Main article: Golf club (equipment)

A player usually carries several clubs during the game (but no more than fourteen, the limit defined by the rules). There are three major types of clubs, known as woods, irons, and putters. Wedges are irons used to play shorter shots. Woods are played for long shots from the tee or fairway, and occasionally rough, while irons are for precision shots from fairways as well as from the rough. A new type of wood known as a "hybrid" combines the straight-hitting characteristics of irons with the easy-to-hit-in-the-air characteristics of higher-lofted woods. A "hybrid" is often used for long shots from difficult rough. Hybrids are also used by players who have a difficult time getting the ball airborne with long irons. Wedges are played from difficult ground such as sand or the rough and for approach shots to the green. Putters are mostly played on the green, but can also be useful when playing from bunkers or for some approach shots.

Golf balls

Main article: Golf ball

A golf ball is a ball designed for use in the game of golf.

An appendix to the "Rules of Golf" defines that a golf ball must not weigh more than 45.93 grams, that its diameter must not be less than 42.67 mm, and that its shape may not differ significantly from a symmetric sphere. Like golf clubs, golf balls are subject to testing and approval by the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews and the United States Golf Association, and those that do not conform with the regulations may not be used in competitions (Rule 5-1).


Other equipment

Sometimes transport is by special golf carts. Clubs and other equipment are carried in golf bags. Golfers wear special shoes with exchangeable spikes (or little, plastic claws termed soft spikes) attached to the soles. They also often wear gloves that help grip the club. Tees resemble nails with a flattened head and are usually made of wood or plastic. A tee is pushed into the ground to rest a ball on top of for an easier shot; however, this is only allowed for the first stroke (tee shot or drive) of each hole. When on the green, the ball may be picked up to be cleaned or if it is in the way of an opponent's putting line; its position must then be marked using a ball marker (usually a flat, round piece of plastic or a coin). Scores are recorded on a score card during the round.



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