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Dealing with slow/new player in your group

 mrshinsa ·  
mrshinsamrshinsa Members  308WRX Points: 152Posts: 308 Greens
Joined:  edited Oct 9, 2019 in Juniors/College Golf Talk #1

What is the proper way to handle a slow player in the group? I'm talking about playing with someone who isn't just slow, but completely new to the game.

Ready golf, walking ahead, walking to the next tee box after holing out only gets you so far.

We were once paired up with a kid who shot 80, and it wasn't fun at all. That's 80 for a 9 hole.

The biggest concern is of course not to get penalized, but our director will penalize the entire group, not just one individual.

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  • MadGolfer76MadGolfer76 MaineMembers  20366WRX Points: 943Posts: 20,366 Titanium Tees
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    "Dude, hurry up."

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  • HappyGilmoresBootsHappyGilmoresBoots Green Balls MichiganMembers  202WRX Points: 79Handicap: 18?Posts: 202 Fairways
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    Patience and putting in a little extra practice time with the guy? A strict enforcement of maximum strokes (either double par, or max 10 shots)?

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  • hangontighthangontight Members  782WRX Points: 235Posts: 782 Golden Tee
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    You can usually spot it before the first tee. I usually will make a comment down the first fairway like -

    “man, I hope pace of play for the groups ahead is fast today ...don’t like for the boys/girls to rush, but being out here for more than 2 hours is way too long...”

    Hopefully that sets the expectation but, unfortunately , when you have a New player /parent it’s simply a fact of them not knowing better. Ideally the tour director is driving pace with reminders at the tee and along the way to help educate them. However, once on the course , sometimes you can find passive friendly ways to help it along...

    • stand by and jump in to rake a bunker for them so they can move on to next shot with junior
    • when asked who is up? , reply “whoever is ready, fire away”
    • When in a tournament where the time pace is on the card, I have no problem announcing to the group we are X minutes behind pace. If you really want to be passive , just say it to your kid, but loud enough so all can hear.

    More than the actual time they will save , I’ve found these tactics send the message in most cases.

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  • tiger1873tiger1873 Members  1627WRX Points: 418Posts: 1,627 Platinum Tees
    Joined:  edited Oct 10, 2019 #5

    Bad enough that you get penalized it also effects the others in the group having endure slow play.

    The faster players need to just play through the hole. They can finish the hole and then watch the kid finish or walk to the next hole. You have to make it obvious to the rule officials watching. The usually outcome is they will leave you alone. The slow player will actually rush when they end under behind.

    Most import thing is you kid knows to not rush themselves to make it up because that just hurts their score. In most cases if you way behind just take the penalty because if you rushing is going to cause mistakes. Have to learn your pace you can play at.

    Playing at a good pace And leaving the slow player behind also works for even players who are good but intentionally slows things up to rush other players who are worried about getting penalized. Can happen more on the last day of a multi-day tournament.

    Posted:
  • TripleBogeysrbetterTripleBogeysrbetter Members  417WRX Points: 319Handicap: 21Posts: 417 Greens
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    I just hope all the parents with fast young kids now will remember this later on.

    Like when their 14 yo is playing with High school juniors/seniors. Those kids will hit it past your kids by 50 yards. Then your kid will hit it in the rough or trees and beg for the group to slow down.

    The other parents will think **** that kid is slow.

    Just remember what goes around comes around. :-)

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  • mrshinsamrshinsa Members  308WRX Points: 152Posts: 308 Greens
    Joined:  edited Oct 14, 2019 #7


    I just hope all the parents with fast young kids now will remember this later on.

    Like when their 14 yo is playing with High school juniors/seniors. Those kids will hit it past your kids by 50 yards. Then your kid will hit it in the rough or trees and beg for the group to slow down.

    The other parents will think **** that kid is slow.

    Just remember what goes around comes around. :-)

    Thank you for the comment and a different insight.

    Just to be clear, this post wasn't meant to be snooty. We've played with slow players before and I usually don't have any issues. Playing ready golf, moving up after your shot, and even running after you hit is enough to close the gap to the front group.
    Also, US Kids generally has a slow pace, and most rounds are 5 hours, give or take.

    My concern is that if one person is new to the game and is taking 10 strokes on multiple holes, the entire group gets penalized for being slow. That seems pretty unfair so I'm curious as to how others would handle the situation, and possibly prevent getting penalized.

    Posted:
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  • tiger1873tiger1873 Members  1627WRX Points: 418Posts: 1,627 Platinum Tees
    Joined:  edited Oct 14, 2019 #8


    I just hope all the parents with fast young kids now will remember this later on.

    Like when their 14 yo is playing with High school juniors/seniors. Those kids will hit it past your kids by 50 yards. Then your kid will hit it in the rough or trees and beg for the group to slow down.

    The other parents will think **** that kid is slow.

    Just remember what goes around comes around. :-)

    There is a difference between slow play and poor play. What your describing is poor play and depending on the tournament you enter it may acceptable or it may be an insult to other players.

    For instance if you have poor play and enter a us open qualifier the other players will be insulated for good reason. Now that same player is in high school match it is not as big of a deal. Your chances of being penalized is much less so players will more accommodating.

    My kid was penalized multiple stokes because of a slow player that was playing poorly and it was not a good experience for anyone in the group. One of the other fathers at the time in the group really yelled at the tournament director because one of the player was playing poorly and we all felt it was unfair to penalize the whole group and his response was to leave the player behind otherwise the whole group is guilty of slow play. So if your playing slow expect it. This was a ranked tournament so 2 extra stokes really hurt my daughter and others in the group.

    Posted:
    Post edited by tiger1873 on
  • TripleBogeysrbetterTripleBogeysrbetter Members  417WRX Points: 319Handicap: 21Posts: 417 Greens
    Joined:  #9

    On -, @mrshinsa said:


    I just hope all the parents with fast young kids now will remember this later on.

    Like when their 14 yo is playing with High school juniors/seniors. Those kids will hit it past your kids by 50 yards. Then your kid will hit it in the rough or trees and beg for the group to slow down.

    The other parents will think **** that kid is slow.

    Just remember what goes around comes around. :-)

    Thank you for the comment and a different insight.

    Just to be clear, this post wasn't meant to be snooty. We've played with slow players before and I usually don't have any issues. Playing ready golf, moving up after your shot, and even running after you hit is enough to close the gap to the front group.
    Also, US Kids generally has a slow pace, and most rounds are 5 hours, give or take.

    My concern is that if one person is new to the game and is taking 10 strokes on multiple holes, the entire group gets penalized for being slow. That seems pretty unfair so I'm curious as to how others would handle the situation, and possibly prevent getting penalized.

    I understand I didn't take it as snooty. Just seen kids that were cream of the crop in their previous age groups are now back at the bottom when they're the youngest ones.

    If they were somewhat slow before they will be really exposed later on.

    Posted:
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  • tiger1873tiger1873 Members  1627WRX Points: 418Posts: 1,627 Platinum Tees
    Joined:  edited Oct 15, 2019 #10

    On -, @mrshinsa said:


    I just hope all the parents with fast young kids now will remember this later on.

    Like when their 14 yo is playing with High school juniors/seniors. Those kids will hit it past your kids by 50 yards. Then your kid will hit it in the rough or trees and beg for the group to slow down.

    The other parents will think **** that kid is slow.

    Just remember what goes around comes around. :-)

    Thank you for the comment and a different insight.

    Just to be clear, this post wasn't meant to be snooty. We've played with slow players before and I usually don't have any issues. Playing ready golf, moving up after your shot, and even running after you hit is enough to close the gap to the front group.
    Also, US Kids generally has a slow pace, and most rounds are 5 hours, give or take.

    My concern is that if one person is new to the game and is taking 10 strokes on multiple holes, the entire group gets penalized for being slow. That seems pretty unfair so I'm curious as to how others would handle the situation, and possibly prevent getting penalized.

    I understand I didn't take it as snooty. Just seen kids that were cream of the crop in their previous age groups are now back at the bottom when they're the youngest ones.

    If they were somewhat slow before they will be really exposed later on.

    I know the type of kids your talking about. Yes those kids should be careful because there not going to cut it when the yardage grows and they can't hit the ball far enough and it exposes some very weak spots. Seen quite a few girls quit now as my daughter gets older.

    Posted:
  • mattwalterpgamattwalterpga Murfreesboro, TNMembers  58WRX Points: 70Handicap: Being a Teaching Professional LOLPosts: 58 Bunkers
    Joined:  #11

    On -, @mrshinsa said:

    What is the proper way to handle a slow player in the group? I'm talking about playing with someone who isn't just slow, but completely new to the game.

    Ready golf, walking ahead, walking to the next tee box after holing out only gets you so far.

    We were once paired up with a kid who shot 80, and it wasn't fun at all. That's 80 for a 9 hole.

    The biggest concern is of course not to get penalized, but our director will penalize the entire group, not just one individual.

    If it's a beginner like you're talking about then they probably don't even know how to play fast or that they could be penalized for slow play. Best thing to do in those circumstances is to politely offer help. You can say something like "Hey I'm concerned we might be getting a little behind the group in front of us. Are you ok playing ready golf?" Or if you got a 3some or 4some you can have the first person who holes out walk to the tee on the next hole and go ahead and tee off before the group finishes putting out so that's one less player to tee off after the flag goes back in.

    It can be a struggle when the kid is on the way to shooting 80 for 9 holes. I've seen it. The last thing they need is someone breathing down their neck about taking to long. It's not fun at that point for them either. Best thing to do is just offer help with fast play tips. Like where to putt the bag so they don't walk across the green 3 times. Pick up their extra clubs on the green if they brought them. Take care of the flagstick for them so they don't have to do it. Things like that.

    Hope that helps.

    Posted:
  • TripleBogeysrbetterTripleBogeysrbetter Members  417WRX Points: 319Handicap: 21Posts: 417 Greens
    Joined:  #12

    If it's a beginner like you're talking about then they probably don't even know how to play fast or that they could be penalized for slow play. Best thing to do in those circumstances is to politely offer help. You can say something like "Hey I'm concerned we might be getting a little behind the group in front of us. Are you ok playing ready golf?" Or if you got a 3some or 4some you can have the first person who holes out walk to the tee on the next hole and go ahead and tee off before the group finishes putting out so that's one less player to tee off after the flag goes back in.

    It can be a struggle when the kid is on the way to shooting 80 for 9 holes. I've seen it. The last thing they need is someone breathing down their neck about taking to long. It's not fun at that point for them either. Best thing to do is just offer help with fast play tips. Like where to putt the bag so they don't walk across the green 3 times. Pick up their extra clubs on the green if they brought them. Take care of the flagstick for them so they don't have to do it. Things like that.

    Hope that helps.

    I love when the first kid just hits. If you're ready, Let's roll. I know DS gets in a better groove.

    Posted:
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