Golf is a sport in which a player, using several types of clubs including a driver and a putter hits a ball into each hole on a golf course in the lowest possible number of strokes. Sport is an Activity that is governed by a set of rules or Customs and often engaged in competitively Golf equipment encompasses the various items that are used to play the sport of Golf. A golf ball is a Ball designed to be used in the game of Golf. Golf is one of the few ball games that does not use a standardized playing area; rather, the game is played on golf "courses," each one of which has a unique design and typically consists of either 9 or 18 separate holes. A ball game is a Game played with a Ball. Someone who plays a ball game is known as a ballplayer. Golf is defined in the Rules of Golf as "playing a ball with a club from the teeing ground into the hole by a stroke or successive strokes in accordance with the Rules. The Rules of Golf are standardized procedures in which the game of Golf should be played "
The first game of golf for which records survive was played at Bruntsfield Links, in Edinburgh, Scotland, in A. A golf ball is a Ball designed to be used in the game of Golf. Bruntsfield Links is of park in Bruntsfield, Edinburgh, immediately to the south-west of The Meadows, which it adjoins Edinburgh ( ˈɛdɪnb(ərə Dùn Èideann) is the Capital of Scotland and is its second largest city after Glasgow. Scotland ( Gaelic: Alba) is a Country in northwest Europethat occupies the northern third of the island of Great Britain. D. 1456, recorded in the archives of the Edinburgh Burgess Golfing Society, now The Royal Burgess Golfing Society. An archive refers to a collection of historical records and also refers to the location in which these records are kept The Royal Burgess Golfing Society of Edinburgh is a parkland Golf course and is considered to be one of the oldest courses in Scotland. Golf has become a worldwide game, with golf courses in the majority of countries.
Golf competition may be played as stroke play, in which the individual with the lowest number of strokes is declared the winner, stableford points play (as devised in 1931 by Dr. Frank Stableford of the Wallasey & Royal Liverpool Golf Clubs), in which the individual with the highest points score is declared the winner or as match play with the winner determined by whichever individual or team posts the lower score on the most individual holes during a complete round. In addition, team events such as fourball have been introduced, and these can be played using either the stroke, stableford or matchplay format. A Fourball match is a type of golf match It takes place between two teams of two golfers but all four golfers play their own ball throughout the round rather than alternating shots Alternative ways to play golf have also been introduced, such as miniature golf, sholf and disc golf. Minigolf, or miniature golf, is a miniature version of the Sport of Golf. Sholf, a game is a cross between Table shuffleboard and Golf. Disc golf (also called Frisbee Golf is a disc game in which individual players throw a Flying disc into a basket or at a target
Golf has increasingly turned into a spectator game, with several different levels of professional and amateur tours in many regions of the world. People such as Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus and Annika Sorenstam have become well recognised sports figures across the world. Background and family Woods was born in Cypress, California to Earl (1932-2006 and Kultida (Tida Woods For his detailed statistics records and other achievements see List of career achievements by Jack Nicklaus. Childhood and amateur career Annika Sörenstam was born in Bro near Stockholm, Sweden. Sponsorship has also become a huge part of the game and players often earn more from their sponsorship contracts than they do from the game itself.
The word Golf was first mentioned in writing in 1457 on a Scottish statute on forbidden games as gouf, possibly derived from the Scots word goulf (variously spelled) meaning "to strike or cuff". List of Acts of the Scottish Parliament to 1707 is a list of Acts of Parliament of the Parliament of Scotland. Scots ( The Scots leid) refers to Anglic varieties derived from early northern Middle English spoken in parts of Scotland and Northern This word may, in turn, be derived from the Dutch word kolf, meaning "bat," or "club," and the Dutch sport of the same name. This page refers to the sport of kolf. For the computer game see Kolf. It is often claimed that the word originated as an acronym for "gentlemen only, ladies forbidden", but this is strictly an urban legend. Acronyms, initialisms, and alphabetisms are Abbreviations that are formed using the initial components in a phrase or name An urban legend or urban myth is a form of modern Folklore consisting of stories thought to be factual by those circulating them 
Golf is a very old game of which the exact origins are unclear. The exact origins of the sport of Golf are unclear The most widely accepted theory is that this sport originated in Scotland in the High Middle Ages. The origin of golf is open to debate as to being Chinese, Dutch or Scottish. China ( Wade-Giles ( Mandarin) Chung¹kuo² is a cultural region, an ancient Civilization, and depending on perspective a National The Dutch people ( Dutch:) are the dominant Ethnic group of the Netherlands. Scotland ( Gaelic: Alba) is a Country in northwest Europethat occupies the northern third of the island of Great Britain. However, the most accepted golf history theory is that this sport originated from Scotland in the 1100s. 
A game somewhat similar to golf was first mentioned in Dōngxuān Records (Chinese: 東軒錄), a Chinese book of 11th Century. Chuiwan ( was a Game in ancient China. Its rules resemble modern Golf. It was also mentioned on February 26, 1297 in the Netherlands in a city called Loenen aan de Vecht. Events 747 BC - Epoch (origin of Ptolemy 's Nabonassar Era 364 - Valentinian I is proclaimed The Netherlands ( Dutch:, ˈnedərlɑnt is the European part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which consists of the Netherlands the Netherlands Loenen is a municipality in the Netherlands, in the province of Utrecht. Here the Dutch played a game with a stick and leather ball. Whoever hit the ball into a target several hundreds of meters away the most number of times, won.
However, modern golf is considered to be a Scottish invention, as the game was mentioned in two 15th century laws prohibiting the playing of the game of gowf. Scottish inventions and discoveries are objects processes or techniques which owe their existence either partially or entirely to a person born in or descended from Scotland Some scholars have suggested that this refers to another game which is more akin to modern shinty, hurling or field hockey than golf. Shinty (derived from the Scottish Gaelic sinteag although it is referred to as camanachd or iomain in modern Gaelic is a Team sport Hurling (in Irish, iománaíocht or iomáint) is an outdoor team Sport of ancient Gaelic origin administered by the Gaelic Field hockey is a Team sport in which players attempt to score goals by hitting the Ball across the pitch with a stick A game of putting a small ball into a hole in the ground using clubs was played in 17th century Netherlands. The Netherlands ( Dutch:, ˈnedərlɑnt is the European part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which consists of the Netherlands the Netherlands Flourishing trade over the North Sea during the Middle Ages and early Modern Period led to much language interaction between Scots, Dutch, Flemish and other languages. Scots ( The Scots leid) refers to Anglic varieties derived from early northern Middle English spoken in parts of Scotland and Northern There are reports of even earlier accounts of golf from continental Europe. 
The oldest playing golf course in the world is The Musselburgh Old Links Golf Course . The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews is one of the oldest and most prestigious Golf clubs in the world with the oldest being the Honourable Company of Edinburgh Evidence has shown that golf was played here in 1672 although Mary, Queen of Scots reputedly played there in 1567.
Golf courses have not always had eighteen holes. The St Andrews Links occupy a narrow strip of land along the sea. St Andrews Links in the town of St Andrews, Fife, Scotland, is regarded as the "home of Golf " As early as the 15th century, golfers at St Andrews, in Fife, established a customary route through the undulating terrain, playing to holes whose locations were dictated by topography. St Andrews (Cill Rìmhinn is a Town and former Royal burgh on the east coast of Fife, Scotland. Fife ( Gaelic: Fìobha) is a Council area of Scotland, situated between the Firth of Tay and the Firth of Forth, with inland The course that emerged featured eleven holes, laid out end to end from the clubhouse to the far end of the property. One played the holes out, turned around, and played the holes in, for a total of 22 holes. In 1764, several of the holes were deemed too short, and were therefore combined. The number was thereby reduced from 11 to nine, so that a complete round of the links comprised 18 holes. 
The major changes in equipment since the 19th century have been better mowers, especially for the greens, better golf ball designs, using rubber and man-made materials since about 1900, and the introduction of the metal shaft beginning in the 1930s. Also in the 1930s the wooden golf tee was invented. In the 1970s the use of steel and then titanium to replace wood heads began, and shafts made of "graphite" (also known as carbon fiber) were introduced in the 1980s. Though wooden tees are still most popular, various designs of plastic tees have been developed in recent years, and the synthetic materials composing the modern ball continue to be developed. 
Golf balls are famous for "dimples". These small dips in the surface of the golf ball decrease aerodynamic drag which allows the ball to fly further.  Golf is also famous for the use of flags. A flag is a piece of Cloth, often flown from a pole or mast, generally used Symbolically for signaling or identification These show the position of the hole to players when they make their first drive and are too far away from the hole to aim accurately. When all players in a group are within putting distance, the flag is removed by a "caddy" or a fellow player to allow for easier access to the hole. A flag is a piece of Cloth, often flown from a pole or mast, generally used Symbolically for signaling or identification
In 2005 Golf Digest calculated that there were nearly 32,000 golf courses in the world, approximately half of them in the United States. Golf Digest is a monthly Golf Magazine published by Condé Nast Publications in the United States. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the  The countries with most golf courses in relation to population, starting with the best endowed were: Scotland, New Zealand, Australia, Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Canada, Wales, United States, Sweden, and England (countries with fewer than 500,000 people were excluded). Scotland ( Gaelic: Alba) is a Country in northwest Europethat occupies the northern third of the island of Great Britain. New Zealand is an Island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses (the North Island and the South Island For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. Ireland ( Irish: Éire, ˈeːrʲə is a country in north-western Europe. Northern Ireland (Tuaisceart Éireann Ulster Scots: Norlin Airlann) is a Country within the United Kingdom, lying in the northeast of Country to "Dominion of Canada" or "Canadian Federation" or anything else please read the Talk Page The United States of America —commonly referred to as the "Sverige" redirects here For other uses see Sweden (disambiguation and Sverige (disambiguation. England is a Country which is part of the United Kingdom. Its inhabitants account for more than 83% of the total UK population whilst its mainland Apart from Sweden, all of these countries have English as the majority language, but the number of courses in new territories is increasing rapidly. English is a West Germanic language originating in England and is the First language for most people in the United Kingdom, the United States For example the first golf course in the People's Republic of China opened in the mid-1980s, but by 2005 there were 200 courses in that country. Talk People's Republic of China) PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA ARTICLE GUIDELINES
The professional sport was initially dominated by Scottish then English golfers, but since World War I, America has produced the greatest quantity of leading professionals. World War I (abbreviated WWI; also known as the First World War, the Great War, and the War to End All Other Commonwealth countries such as Australia and South Africa are also traditional powers in the sport. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. The Republic of South Africa (also known by other official names) is a country located at the southern tip of the continent of Africa Since around the 1970s, Japan, Scandinavian and other Western European countries have produced leading players on a regular basis. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Japan topics. Terminology and usage As a cultural term "Scandinavia" has no official definition and is subject to usage by those who identify with the culture in question as well Western Europe at its most general meaning means 'all the countries in the West of Europe ' The number of countries with high-class professionals continues to increase steadily, especially in East Asia. South Korea is notably strong in women's golf. South Korea, officially the Republic of Korea and often referred to as Korea ( Korean: 대한민국 tɛː 
The last decade or so has seen a marked increase in specialised golf vacations or holidays worldwide. This demand for travel which is centered around golf has led to the development of luxury resorts which cater to golfers and feature integrated golf courses. A luxury resort, sometimes referred to as an exclusive Resort, is a very expensive Vacation facility which is fully staffed and has been rated with five stars
In the United States, the number of people who play golf 25 times or more per year fell from 6. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the 9 million in 2000 to 4. 6 million in 2005, according to the National Golf Foundation. The Foundation reported a smaller decline in the number who played golf at all; it fell from 30 million to 26 million over the same period. 
Golf is played in an area of land designated a golf course. A golf course consists of a series of holes each consisting of a Teeing ground, Fairway, rough and other hazards and a green with a pin and cup all designed for A course consists of a series of holes, each consisting of a teeing area, fairway, rough and other hazards, and the green with the pin and cup. A typical golf course consists of eighteen holes, but many have only nine. 
Every game of golf is based on playing a number of holes in a given order. A round typically consists of 18 holes that are played in the order determined by the course layout. On a nine-hole course, a standard round consists of two successive nine-hole rounds. Playing a hole on the course golf consists of hitting a ball from a tee on the teeing box (a marked area designated for the first shot of a hole, a tee shot), and once the ball comes to rest, striking it again. In Golf, the teeing ground is the area at the beginning of a hole from which the player's first stroke is taken This process is repeated until the ball is in the cup. Once the ball is on the green (an area of finely cut grass) the ball is usually putted (hit along the ground) into the hole. The goal of resting the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible may be impeded by hazards, such as bunkers and water hazards. A bunker or sand trap is a hazard in the game of Golf. It is a depression near the green or fairway that is filled with Sand. Water hazards, like bunkers, are natural obstacles designed to add both visual interest and difficulty to a Golf course  In most typical forms of gameplay, each player plays his or her ball from the tee until it is holed.
Players can walk or drive in motorised carts over the course, either singly or in groups of two, three, or four, sometimes accompanied by caddies who carry and manage the players' equipment and give them advice. In Golf, a caddy (or caddie) is the person who carries a player's bag and gives insightful advice and moral support 
Each player often acts as scorer for one other player in the group, that is, he or she records the score on a score card. In stroke play (see below), the score consists of the number of strokes played plus any penalty strokes incurred. Penalty strokes are not actually strokes but penalty points that are added to the score for violations of rules or utilizing relief procedures.
A hole is classified by its par, the number of strokes a skilled golfer should require to complete play of the hole. In Golf, a par is a predetermined number of strokes that a golfer should require to complete a hole a round (the sum of the total pars of the played holes also called  For example, a skilled golfer expects to reach the green on a par-four hole in two strokes (This would be considered a Green in Regulation) , one from the tee (the "drive") and another, second, stroke to the green (the "approach") and then roll the ball into the hole in two putts for par. Traditionally, a golf hole is either a par-three, -four or -five; some par-six holes exist, but are not usually found on traditional golf courses. 
Primarily, but not exclusively, the par of a hole is determined by the tee-to-green distance. A typical length for a par-three hole ranges between 91 and 224 metres (100–250 yd), for a par-four hole, between 225 and 434 metres (251–475 yd). Typically, par-five holes are at between 435 and 630 metres (476–690 yd), and nontraditional par-six holes are any longer distance. These distances are not absolute rules; for example, it is possible that a 450 metre (492 yd) hole could be classed as a par-four hole, since the par for a hole is determined by its 'effective playing length'. If the tee-to-green distance on a hole is predominantly downhill, it will play shorter than its physical length and may be given a lower par rating. Par ratings are also affected by factors affecting difficulty; the placement of hazards or the shape of the hole for example can sometimes affect the play of a hole such that it requires an extra stroke to avoid playing into the hazard or out-of-bounds. 
Eighteen hole courses may have four par-three, ten par-four, and four par-five holes, though other combinations exist and are not less worthy than courses of par 72. Many major championships are contested on courses playing to a par of 70, 71 or 72. In some countries, courses are classified, in addition to the course's par, with a course classification describing the play difficulty of a course and may be used to calculate a golfer's playing handicap for that given course (c. f. golf handicap). A golf handicap is a numerical measure of an Amateur Golfer s playing ability 
Penalty strokes are incurred in certain situations. In the sport of Golf, a penalty or penalty stroke is an additional stroke or strokes added to a player's score for an infraction of the rules. Most often a penalty stroke is assessed because a player has hit into a situation from which they cannot or choose not to play the ball as it lies (e. g. in a water hazard), or because they have lost their ball (out of bounds (OB)) and must play a substitute. Penalty strokes are counted towards a player's score as if they were an extra swing at the ball. Penalty strokes can be added on for many different reasons. It could be a wrongful move that results in a penalty (moving an object that effects the ball to move. ) Or a penalty could be because of a lost ball. Most rule infractions lead to a stroke penalty but also can lead to disqualification. Disqualification could be from cheating, signing for a lower score, or from rule infractions that lead to improper play.
In every form of play, the goal is to play as few strokes per round as possible. Scores for each hole can be described as follows:
|Term on a|
|-4||Condor (or triple-eagle)||four strokes under par|
|-3||Albatross (or double-eagle)||three strokes under par|
|-2||Eagle||two strokes under par|
|-1||Birdie||one stroke under par|
|0||Par||strokes equal to par|
|+1||Bogey||one stroke more than par|
|+2||Double bogey||two strokes over par|
|+3||Triple bogey||three strokes over par|
The two basic forms of playing golf are match play and stroke play/Stableford Points scoring. In Golf, a par is a predetermined number of strokes that a golfer should require to complete a hole a round (the sum of the total pars of the played holes also called In Golf, a par is a predetermined number of strokes that a golfer should require to complete a hole a round (the sum of the total pars of the played holes also called In Golf, a par is a predetermined number of strokes that a golfer should require to complete a hole a round (the sum of the total pars of the played holes also called In Golf, a par is a predetermined number of strokes that a golfer should require to complete a hole a round (the sum of the total pars of the played holes also called In Golf, a par is a predetermined number of strokes that a golfer should require to complete a hole a round (the sum of the total pars of the played holes also called In Golf, a par is a predetermined number of strokes that a golfer should require to complete a hole a round (the sum of the total pars of the played holes also called Match play is a scoring system for Golf in which a player or team earns points for each hole in which they have bested their opponents this is as opposed to Stroke play Stroke play is a scoring system for Golf (compare to Match play)
There are variations of these basic principles, some of which are explicitly described in the "Rules of Golf" and are therefore regarded "official. " "Official" forms of play are, among others, foursome and four-ball games.
A foursome (defined in Rule 29) is played between two teams of two players each, in which each team has only one ball and players alternate playing it. A foursome match is a competition between two teams each consisting of two Golfers The golfers on the same team take alternate shots on each hole with the same ball For example, if players A and B form a team, A tees off on the first hole, B will play the second shot, A the third, and so on until the hole is finished. On the second hole, B will tee off (regardless who played the last putt on the first hole), then A plays the second shot, and so on. Foursomes can be played as match play or stroke play. 
A four-ball (Rules 30 and 31) is also played between two teams of two players each, but every player plays his own ball and for each team, the lower score on each hole is counted. A Fourball match is a type of golf match It takes place between two teams of two golfers but all four golfers play their own ball throughout the round rather than alternating shots Four-balls can be played as match play or stroke play. 
There are also popular unofficial variations on team play:
There is also a form of starting called "shotgun," which is mainly used for tournament play. A "shotgun start" consists of groups starting at different tees, allowing for all players to start and end their round at the same time. A shotgun start is a Golf tournament format in which all groups of players tee off simultaneously from different holes
A handicap is a numerical measure of an amateur golfer's ability to play golf over 18 holes. A golf handicap is a numerical measure of an Amateur Golfer s playing ability Handicaps can be applied either for stroke play competition or match play competition. Stroke play is a scoring system for Golf (compare to Match play) Match play is a scoring system for Golf in which a player or team earns points for each hole in which they have bested their opponents this is as opposed to Stroke play In either competition, a handicap generally represents the number of strokes above par that a player will achieve on an above average day.
In stroke play competition, the competitor's handicap is subtracted from their total "gross" score at the end of the round, to calculate a "net" score against which standings are calculated. Stroke play is a scoring system for Golf (compare to Match play) In match play competition, handicap strokes are assigned on a hole-by-hole basis, according to the handicap rating of each hole (which is provided by the course). Match play is a scoring system for Golf in which a player or team earns points for each hole in which they have bested their opponents this is as opposed to Stroke play The hardest holes on the course receive the first handicap strokes, with the easiest holes receiving the last handicap strokes.
Calculating handicaps are often complicated, but essentially are representative of the average over par of a number of a player's previous above average rounds, adjusted for course difficulty. Legislations regarding the calculation of handicaps differs among countries. For example, handicap rules may include the difficulty of the course the golfer is playing on by taking into consideration factors such as the number of bunkers, the length of the course, the difficulty and slopes of the greens, the width of the fairways, and so on.
Handicap systems are not used in professional golf. Professional golfers often score several strokes below par for a round and thus have a calculated handicap of 0 or less, meaning that their handicap results in the addition of strokes to their round score. Someone with a handicap of zero or less is often referred to as a 'scratch golfer. '
The rules of golf are internationally standardised and are jointly governed by the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews (R&A), which was founded 1754 and the United States Golf Association (USGA). The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews is one of the oldest and most prestigious Golf clubs in the world with the oldest being the Honourable Company of Edinburgh The United States Golf Association ( USGA) is the United States ' national association of golf courses, clubs and facilities and the governing body By agreement with the R&A, USGA jurisdiction on the enforcement and interpretation of the rules is limited to the United States and Mexico. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the The United Mexican States ( or commonly Mexico (ˈmɛksɪkoʊ () is a federal constitutional Republic in North America. The national golf associations of other countries use the rules laid down by the R&A and there is a formal procedure for referring any points of doubt to the R&A.
The underlying principle of the rules is fairness. As stated on the back cover of the official rule book: "play the ball as it lies", "play the course as you find it", and "if you can't do either, do what is fair". Some rules state that:
The Decisions on the Rules of Golf are based on formal case decisions by the R&A and USGA and are revised and updated every other year.
There are strict regulations regarding the amateur status of golfers.  Essentially, everybody who has ever received payment or compensation for giving instruction or played golf for money is not considered an amateur and may not participate in competitions limited solely to amateurs. However amateur golfers may receive expenses which comply with strict guidelines and they may accept non-cash prizes within the limits established by the Rules of Amateur Status.
In addition to the officially printed rules, golfers also abide by a set of guidelines called Golf etiquette. Golf etiquette refers to a set of rules and practices designed to make the game of Golf safer and more enjoyable for golfers and to minimize possible damage to golf equipment Etiquette guidelines cover matters such as safety, fairness, easiness and pace of play, and a player's obligation to contribute to the care of the course. Though there are no penalties for breach of etiquette rules, players generally follow the rules of golf etiquette in an effort to improve everyone's playing experience.
Variations of golf are games or activities based on or similar to the game of golf, in which the player utilizes common golf skills. Variations of golf are games or activities based on or similar to the game of Golf, in which the player utilizes common golf skills Some are essentially identical to golf, with only minor rules changes, while others are more distant and arguably not simple variations but distinct games. Examples include Skins and Bingo Bango Bongo. A skins game is a type of scoring for various sports most notably Golf but also for Curling and Bowling.
To hit the ball, the club is swung at the motionless ball wherever it has come to rest from a side stance. A golf ball is a Ball designed to be used in the game of Golf. Golf clubs are used in the sport of Golf to hit a Golf ball. Each club is composed of a shaft with a lance(grip and a clubhead Many golf shots make the ball travel through the air (carry) and roll out for some more distance (roll).
Every shot is a compromise between length and precision, and long shots are often less precise than short ones. A longer shot may result in a better score if it helps reduce the total number of strokes for a given hole, but the benefit may be more than outweighed by additional strokes or penalties if a ball is lost, out of bounds, or comes to rest on difficult ground. Therefore, a skilled golfer must assess the quality of his or her shots in a particular situation in order to judge whether the possible benefits of aggressive play are worth the risks.
Strictly speaking, every shot made in a round of golf will be subtly different, because the conditions of the ball's lie and desired travel path and distance of the ball will virtually never be exactly the same. However, most shots fall into one of the following categories depending on the purpose and desired distance:
Putts and short chips are ideally played without much movement of the body, but most other golf shots are played using variants of the full golf swing. The full golf swing itself is used in tee and fairway shots.
A full swing is a complex rotation of the body aimed at accelerating the club head to a great speed. For a right-handed golfer, it consists of a backswing to the right, a downswing to the left (during which the ball is hit), and a follow through.
The full golf swing is a complex motion that is often difficult to learn. It is common for beginners to spend several months practicing the very basics before playing their first ball on a course. Generally, even once a golfer has attained professional status, a coach is still necessary in order for the player to maintain good fundamentals.
Relatively few golfers play left-handed (i. e. , swing back to the left and forward to the right). The percentage of golfers in the U. S. who play left-handed is estimated to be anywhere from 4 percent to 7 percent.  Even some players who are strongly left-handed in their daily lives prefer the right-handed golf swing. In the past, this may have been due to the difficulty of finding left-handed golf clubs. Today, more manufacturers provide left-handed versions of their club lines, and the clubs are more readily purchased from mail-order and Internet catalogues, as well as golf stores. A golfer who plays right-handed, but holds the club left-hand-below-right is said to be "cack-handed" or "cross-handed".
A golf ball acquires spin when it is hit. Backspin is imparted for almost every shot due to the golf club's loft (i. e. , angle between the clubface and a vertical plane). A spinning ball deforms the flow of air around it similar to an airplane wing; a back-spinning ball therefore experiences an upward force which makes it fly higher and longer than a ball without spin. However, too much backspin can negatively impact distance travelled; the increased lift wastes the ball's momentum in gaining altitude rather than in traveling along its flight path. The amount of backspin also influences the behavior of a ball when it impacts the ground. A ball with little backspin will usually roll out for a few metres/yards while a ball with more backspin may not roll at all, or even roll backwards. Sidespin occurs when the clubface is not aligned perpendicularly to the plane of swing. Sidespin makes the ball curve left or right, and can be used intentionally or occur unintentionally. For a right-handed player, a subtle curve to the left is called a draw. A severe curve to the left and downward is a hook. A subtle curve to the right is a fade, while a severe curve away and upward is a slice. Draws and fades are caused by slight misalignments between the clubface and swing plane because of a slightly "open" or "closed" clubface at contact; a skilled player can control the amount of draw or fade to make the ball curve along the path of the fairway. Slices and hooks however indicate a severe misalignment, mistiming or other flaw in the player's swing, such as a swing not parallel to the desired line of travel, the club contacting the ball early or late in the swing, etc. They are generally undesirable as they reduce carry distance, are difficult to predict and therefore difficult to adjust for, and cause the ball to veer sharply off of the fairway and into hazards, trees and/or out-of-bounds.
Golf has a wide variety of different kinds of equipment ranging from golf clubs, golf balls, golf shoes, golf bags, and many other different accessories all of them from different manufactures of various price and quality. Golf equipment encompasses the various items that are used to play the sport of Golf.
The majority of professional golfers work as club or teaching professionals (pros), and only compete in local competitions. In Golf the distinction between amateurs and professionals is rigorously maintained A small elite of professional golfers are "tournament pros" who compete full time on international "tours". Many club and teaching professionals working in the golf industry start as caddies or a general interest in the game, finding employment at golf courses and eventually moving on to certifications in their chosen profession. These programs include independent institutions and universities, and those that eventually lead to a Class A golf professional certification.
There are at least twenty professional golf tours, each run by a PGA or an independent tour organisation, which is responsible for arranging events, finding sponsors, and regulating the tour. Top level professional Golf consists of a year round schedule of weekly tournaments played all around the world Professional Golfers' Association, (with or without the apostrophe is the usual term for a professional association in men's Golf. Typically a tour has "members" who are entitled to compete in most of its events, and also invites non-members to compete in some of them. Gaining membership of an elite tour is highly competitive, and most professional golfers never achieve it.
The most widely known tour is the PGA Tour, which attracts the best golfers from all the other men's tours. The PGA Tour is an organization that operates the main professional Golf tours in the United States. This is due mostly to the fact that most PGA Tour events have a first prize of at least USD 800,000. The United States dollar ( sign: $; code: USD) is the unit of Currency of the United States; it has also been The European Tour, which attracts a substantial number of top golfers from outside North America, ranks second to the PGA Tour in worldwide prestige. The PGA European Tour is an organisation which operates the three leading men's professional Golf tours in Europe the elite European Tour, the European Some top professionals from outside North America play enough tournaments to maintain membership on both the PGA Tour and European Tour.
The other leading men's tours include the Japan Golf Tour, the Asian Tour (Asia outside Japan), the PGA Tour of Australasia, and the Sunshine Tour (for Southern Africa, primarily South Africa). The Japan Golf Tour is a prominent Golf tour. It was founded in 1973 and as of 2006 it offers the third highest annual prize fund out of the regular (that is not for The Asian Tour is the principal men's professional Golf tour in Asia except for Japan which has its own Japan Golf Tour, which is also a full The PGA Tour of Australasia is a professional Golf tour for men The Sunshine Tour is a men's professional Golf tour based in Southern Africa These four tours, along with the PGA and European Tours, are full members of the trade body of the world's main tours, the International Federation of PGA Tours. Two other tours, the Canadian Tour and the Tour de las Américas (Latin America), are associate members of the Federation. The Canadian Professional Golf Tour is a men's professional Golf tour The Tour de las Américas is the men's Professional golf tour for Latin America. All of these tours, except for the Tour de las Américas, offer points in the Official World Golf Rankings to golfers who make the cut in their events. The Official World Golf Rankings is a system for rating the performance level of male professional Golfers.
Golf is unique in having lucrative competition for older players. There are several senior tours for men 50 and older, the best known of which is the U. S. -based Champions Tour. The Champions Tour, a Golf tour run by the PGA Tour, hosts a series of events annually
There are six principal tours for women, each based in a different country or continent. The most prestigious of these is the United States based LPGA Tour. The LPGA, in full the Ladies Professional Golf Association, is an American organization for female professional Golfers The organization whose headquarters are
All of the leading professional tours for under-50 players have an official developmental tour, in which the leading players at the end of the season will earn a tour card on the main tour for the following season. Examples include the Nationwide Tour, which feeds to the PGA Tour, and the Challenge Tour, which is the developmental tour of the European Tour. The Nationwide Tour is the developmental tour for the US-based PGA Tour, and features Professional golfers who have either failed to score well enough The Challenge Tour is the second tier men's professional Golf tour in Europe. The Nationwide and Challenge Tours also offer Official World Golf Rankings points.
The major championships are the four most prestigious men's tournaments of the year. The men's major golf championships, often referred to simply as "the majors" are the four most prestigious annual tournaments in professional Golf. In chronological order they are: The Masters, the U.S. Open, The Open Championship (referred to in North America as the British Open) and the PGA Championship. The Masters Tournament, also known as The Masters or The US Masters (outside of the United States is one of four major championships in men's The United States Open Championship, commonly known as the US The Open Championship, or simply The Open (often referred to as the British Open outside the UK) is the oldest of the four major championships The PGA Championship (sometimes referred to as the US PGA Championship outside of North America is an annual Golf tournament conducted by the PGA of America 
The fields for these events include the top several dozen golfers from all over the world. The Masters has been played at Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Georgia since its inception in 1934. Augusta National Golf Club, located in the American city of Augusta Georgia, is one of the most storied and exclusive golf clubs in the world Augusta Georgia is a city in Richmond County, Georgia, United States. The State of Georgia ( is a state in the United States and was one of the original Thirteen Colonies that revolted against British rule It is the only major championship that is played at the same course each year.  The U. S. Open and PGA Championship are played at courses around the United States, while The Open Championship is played at courses in the UK. 
The number of major championships a player accumulates in his career has an impact on his stature in the sport. Jack Nicklaus is considered to be one of the greatest golfers of all time, largely because he has won a record 18 professional majors, or 20 majors in total if his two U.S. Amateurs are included. For his detailed statistics records and other achievements see List of career achievements by Jack Nicklaus. Tiger Woods, who may be the only golfer in the foreseeable future likely to challenge Nicklaus's record, has won 13 professional majors (16 total if his three U. Background and family Woods was born in Cypress, California to Earl (1932-2006 and Kultida (Tida Woods S. Amateurs are included), all before the age of 32. (To put this total in perspective, Nicklaus had won nine professional majors and two U. S. Amateurs at the same age, and did not win his 13th professional major until he was 35. ) Woods also came closest to winning all four current majors in one season (known as a Grand Slam completed first by Bobby Jones) when he won them consecutively across two seasons: the 2000 U. The Grand Slam in golf is winning all the golf's major championships in the same calendar year S. Open, Open Championship, and PGA Championship; and the 2001 Masters. This feat has been frequently called the Tiger Slam.
Prior to the advent of the PGA Championship and The Masters, the four Majors were the U. S. Open, the U. S. Amateur, the Open Championship, and the British Amateur. The Amateur Championship is a Golf tournament which is held in the United Kingdom. These are the four that Bobby Jones won in 1930 to become the only player ever to have earned a Grand Slam. Robert Tyre "Bobby" Jones Jr (March 17 1902 &ndash December 18 1971 was one of the greatest Golfers to compete on a national and international level
Women's golf does not have a globally agreed set of majors. The list of majors recognised by the dominant women's tour, the LPGA Tour in the U. The LPGA, in full the Ladies Professional Golf Association, is an American organization for female professional Golfers The organization whose headquarters are S. , has changed several times over the years, with the last change in 2001. Like the PGA Tour, the (U. S. ) LPGA has four majors: the Kraft Nabisco Championship, the LPGA Championship, the U.S. Women's Open and the Women's British Open. The Kraft Nabisco Championship is one of the four major golf tournaments for women on the LPGA Tour. The LPGA Championship, currently known for sponsorship reasons as the McDonald's LPGA Championship presented by Coca-Cola, is the second-longest running The United States Women's Open Golf Championship, one of thirteen national championships conducted by the United States Golf Association (USGA is one of the LPGA Only the last of these is also recognised by the Ladies European Tour. The Ladies European Tour is a professional Golf tour for women which was founded in 1979 The other event that it recognises as a major is the Evian Masters, which is not considered a major by the LPGA (but is co-sanctioned as a regular LPGA event). The Evian Masters is a women's professional Golf tournament which is played in Évian-les-Bains, France each July However, the significance of this is limited, as the LPGA is far more dominant in women's golf than the PGA Tour is in mainstream men's golf. For example, the BBC has been known to use the U. S. definition of "women's majors" without qualifying it. Also, the Ladies' Golf Union, the governing body for women's golf in the UK and Republic of Ireland, states on its official website that the Women's British Open is "the only Women’s Major to be played outside the U. The Ladies' Golf Union (LGU is the governing body for women's and girls' amateur Golf in Great Britain and Ireland (in political terms the United The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located Ireland ( Irish: Éire, ˈeːrʲə is a country in north-western Europe. S. " For many years, the Ladies European Tour tacitly acknowledged the dominance of the LPGA Tour by not scheduling any of its own events to conflict with the three LPGA majors played in the U. S. , but that changed in 2008, with the LET scheduling an event opposite the LPGA Championship. The second-richest women's tour, the LPGA of Japan Tour, does not recognise any of the U. The Japan LPGA Tour is a professional Golf tour for women organised by the Ladies Professional Golfers' Association of Japan S. LPGA or European majors as it has its own set of three majors. However, these events attract little notice outside Japan.
Like women's golf, senior (50-and-over) men's golf does not have a globally agreed set of majors. Men's professional senior Golf is for players aged 50 and above The list of senior majors on the U. S. -based Champions Tour has changed over the years, but always by expansion; unlike the situation with the LPGA, no senior major has lost its status. The Champions Tour, a Golf tour run by the PGA Tour, hosts a series of events annually The Champions Tour now recognises five majors: the Senior PGA Championship, the U.S. Senior Open, the Senior British Open, The Tradition and the Senior Players Championship. The Senior PGA Championship is one of the major championships in men's senior Golf. The US Senior Open is one of the major championships in men's senior golf The Senior Open Championship, or simply The Senior Open (sometimes referred to as the Senior British Open outside the UK) is a professional golf tournament The Tradition is one of the five major championships recognized by the U The Senior Players Championship is one of the five major championships in men's senior Golf.
Of the five events, the Senior PGA is by far the oldest, having been founded in 1937. The other events all date from the 1980s, when senior golf became a commercial success as the first golf stars of the television era, such as Arnold Palmer and Gary Player, reached the relevant age. Career outline Palmer was born in Latrobe Pennsylvania. He learned golf from his father Deacon Palmer who was head professional and greens keeper at Latrobe Country Club Background and family Gary Player was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, the youngest of Harry and Muriel Player's three children The Senior British Open was not recognised as a major by the Champions Tour until 2003. The European Seniors Tour recognises only the Senior PGA and the two Senior Opens as majors. The European Seniors Tour is a professional tour for male Golfers aged 50 and over run by the PGA European Tour. However, the Champions Tour is arguably more dominant in global senior golf than the U. S. LPGA is in global women's golf.
Environmental concerns over the use of land for golf courses have grown over the past 50 years. Environmentalism is a broad philosophy and Social movement centered on a concern for the conservation and improvement of the environment. Specific concerns include the amount of water and chemical pesticides and fertilizers used for maintenance, as well as the destruction of wetlands and other environmentally important areas during construction. Water Crisis is a term that refers to the status of the world’s Water resources relative to human demand A pesticide is a substance or mixture of substances used to kill a pest. Fertilizers ( also spelt fertiliser are chemical compounds given to Plants to promote growth they are usually applied either through the soil for uptake by plant A wetland is an area of Land consisting of Soil that is Saturated with Moisture, such as a Swamp, Marsh, or Bog A toxic chemical used on golf courses is Diazinon; In 1988, the US Environmental Protection Agency prohibited the use of Diazinon on golf courses and sod farms because of decimation of bird flocks. Diazinon (OO-diethyl-O-(2-isopropyl-6-methyl-pyrimidine-4-ylphosphorothioate a colorless to dark brown liquid is a thiophosphoric acid ester developed in 1952 by
These, along with health and cost concerns, have led to research into more environmentally sound practices and turf grasses. The golf course superintendent is often trained in the uses of these practices and grasses. This has led to some reduction in the amount of chemicals and water used on courses. The turf on golf courses is an excellent filter for water and has been used in communities to cleanse grey water, such as incorporation of bioswales. Greywater, also known as sullage, is non-industrial wastewater generated from domestic processes such as dish washing Bioswales are landscape elements designed to remove Silt and Pollution from Surface runoff water People continue to oppose golf courses for environmental and human survival reasons, as they impede corridors for migrating animals and sanctuaries for birds and other wildlife. In fact, the effective non-native monoculture of golf courses systematically destroys biodiversity. Biodiversity is the variation of Life forms within a given Ecosystem, Biome or for the entire Earth. 
A result of modern equipment is that today's players can hit the ball much further than previously. In a concern for safety, golf course architects have had to lengthen and widen golf courses. This has led to a ten percent increase in the amount of area that is required for golf courses. At the same time, water restrictions placed by communities have forced courses to limit the amount of maintained turf grass. While most modern 18-hole golf courses occupy as much as 60 square hectometers (150 acres) of land, the average course has 30 hm² (75 acres) of maintained turf. (Sources include the National Golf Foundation and the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America [GCSAA]. The National Golf Foundation provides Golf -business research and consulting services )
Golf courses can be built on sandy areas along coasts, abandoned farms, strip mines and quarries, deserts and forests. Many Western countries have instituted environmental restrictions on where and how courses can be built. 
In some parts of the world, attempts to build courses and resorts have led to protests along with vandalism and violence by both sides. Although golf is a minor issue compared to other land-ethics questions, it has symbolic importance as it is a sport normally associated with the wealthier Westernized population, and the culture of colonization and globalisation of non-native land ethics. The land ethic is a perspective on Environmental ethics first championed by Aldo Leopold in his book A Sand County Almanac. Resisting golf tourism and golf's expansion has become an objective of some land-reform movements, especially in the Philippines and Indonesia. Tourism is Travel for Recreational or Leisure purposes The World Tourism Organization defines tourists as people who "travel Land reforms (also Agrarian reform, though that can have a broader meaning is an often- controversial alteration in the societal arrangements whereby government The Philippines ( Filipino: Pilipinas, officially known as the Republic of the Philippines (fil ''Republika ng Pilipinas'' RP The Republic of Indonesia ( (Republik Indonesia is a Country in Southeast Asia.
In the Bahamas, opposition to golf developments has become a national issue. The Bahamas, officially the Commonwealth of The Bahamas, is an independent sovereign English -speaking country consisting of two thousand Cays and Residents of Great Guana Cay and Bimini, for example, are engaged in legal and political opposition to golf developments on their islands, for fear the golf courses will destroy the nutrient-poor balance on which their coral reef and mangrove systems depend. Great Guana Cay is an Islet located in The Bahamas. It is a long but narrow islet which is 9 Miles (14 Bimini (ˈbɪmɨni is a district of the Bahamas composed of a chain of islands
In Saudi Arabia, golf courses have been constructed on nothing more than oil-covered sand. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, KSA ( المملكة العربية السعودية, al-Mamlaka al-ʻArabiyya as-Suʻūdiyya) or Suudi However, in some cities such as Dhahran, modern, grass golf courses have been built. This article is about Dhahran the city For the Saudi Aramco residential compound see Dhahran Aramco Camp. In Coober Pedy, Australia, there is a golf course that consists of nine holes dug into mounds of sand, diesel and oil, with no grass anywhere on the course. Coober Pedy is a town in northern South Australia, 846 kilometres north of Adelaide on the Stuart Highway. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. Players carry a small piece of astroturf from which they tee the ball. AstroTurf is a brand of Artificial turf. Though the term is a Registered trademark, it is sometimes used as a generic description of any kind In New Zealand it is not uncommon for rural courses to have greens fenced off and sheep graze the fairways. New Zealand is an Island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses (the North Island and the South Island At the 125-year-old Royal Colombo Golf Club in Sri Lanka steam trains, from the Kelani Valley railway, run through the course at the 6th hole. Sri Lanka, officially the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka ( Sinhalese:, இலங்கை known as Ceylon before 1972 is an Island
Extreme golf is played on environmentally sustainable alternatives to traditional courses. A cross between hiking and golfing, the course layout exposes players to a wide range of natural obstacles and challenging terrains.
Based on the growing popularity of the U. X. Open Alternative Golf Tournament the extreme golf course features un-mowed meadows and forest instead of fairways, with "goals" scored on temporary greens (a circle 6 metres (20 ft) in diameter).