Can you take measures to stop your club sliding about in your hands? Our expert Steve Carroll takes you through an interesting golf equipment rule

It’s pouring. You’ve rooted around the bag but your precious rain glove is nowhere to be found. Your grips are so slick, you’ve got a better chance of the club going further than the ball.

Why are you playing? But, seriously, do you just have to put up with nature? If you’ve got a golf towel in your bag, could you put it to good use?

You might think you’re at the mercy of the weather but, if you dig deeply enough, there may be something in the Rules of Golf that can help you. Let’s dive in…

golf towel

Rules of Golf: Use of golf towel and golf equipment rules

You can wrap a towel or handkerchief around the grip of your club. There, I’ve said it. Are you surprised? I was when I first found this little nugget lurking in Rule 4.3a (5). But no less a golfing great than Tom Watson once advised this and who’s going to argue with a five-time Open champion?

Not only can you do that, but you can also use resin, powders and “other moisturising or drying agents”.

So if you want to sprinkle powder to help your grip, the Rules won’t stop you. The club might have an issue, though, if you make a mess!

Don’t get too creative, though. The same rule says you are not allowed to use other equipment that gives “an unfair advantage with hand position or grip pressure”.

You’ll get absolutely hammered if you get this wrong. It’s the general penalty for the first breach (two shots or loss of hole in match play) and disqualification if it happens again.

Have a question for our Rules of Golf expert?

Despite the simplification of the Rules of Golf, there are still some that leave us scratching our heads. And as I’ve passed the R&A’s Level 3 rules exam with distinction, I’ll try to help by featuring the best in this column.

You can read all of Steve’s Rules of Golf explained columns here.

Steve Carroll

A journalist for 23 years, Steve has been immersed in club golf for almost as long. A former captain and committee member, he has passed the Level 3 Rules of Golf exam with distinction having attended the national Tournament Administrators and Referee's Seminar. He has officiated at a host of high-profile tournaments, including Open Regional Qualifying and the PGA Fourball Championship. A member of NCG's Top 100s panel, Steve has a particular love of links golf and is frantically trying to restore his single-figure handicap.

Handicap: 10.9

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