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golf injuries

Ouch! I’ve been hit by a golf ball – why have the Rules put me on the clock?

Yes, there are time limits written down for recovering from a sudden illness or injury. But what are they? Prepare to be surprised

 

Yes, there are time limits written down for recovering from a sudden illness or injury. But what are they? Prepare to be surprised

If you’ve been cracked on the bonce with a ball, if you’re wilting in the heat, or if you’ve been wounded by an angry bee, you’re probably not thinking too seriously about your next shot.

What is a silly little club competition compared to our health? When we’re struck down by a sudden illness, or golf injuries, most of us would probably down tools and head for the safety of the clubhouse and a date with a medical professional.

But the Rules of Golf are written for everyone who plays the game – from the humble club player to the best in the world – and so it might surprise you to learn there is a limit set down on how long you’ve got to recover.

So if you find yourself a bit nauseous, or if you get struck down with vertigo as Jason Day so famously did at the Masters and US Open, when does the countdown run out? Let’s take a look at the rules for golf injuries…

golf injuries

Golf injuries: How long do you get to recover from a sudden illness or injury?

Up to 15 minutes. That’s what a clarification to Rule 5.6a recommends committees allow before failure to continue play “would be unreasonably delaying play”.

You might think that’s a little unfair if you’ve been sent spinning by someone’s errant drive colliding with your face – I can tell you from experience that it’s pretty painful – but the game’s going on with or without you.

What’s the penalty for unreasonable delay of play? One shot for the first breach, two for the second (or loss of hole if it’s in match play), and disqualification if it happens again.

Let’s take it one step further. What if you had an ongoing problem, where you might require some treatment to alleviate an injury a number of times during a round.

The rules clarification says the committee should apply the same time limit to the “total time a player uses when they receive repeated treatments”.

Now have your say

What do you think of this golf injuries rule? Have you ever come across it in a club competition? Why not let me know with a comment on X.

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