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Slow play - causes and solutions


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#1 rogolf

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 09:26 PM

I had buried this in another thread, but think it needs some consideration.

There is no doubt (in my mind anyway) that slow play is causing people not to play - they just don't have sufficient time to devote 1/2 their waking day to devote to a game of golf. Imo, this is at least partially caused by golf course administration,
- insufficient time between tee times (should be 10 minutes minimum)
- golf course designs and layout - too difficult, too many tee choices
- beverage carts
- rules for use of golf carts - cart path only, 90* rule
- not allowing walking
- focus on getting people on the golf course rather than a focus on getting them off the course in a timely manner

This is a generalization, but imo, golf course administration just don't care about it and are afraid of upsetting one or two of their customers instead of satisfying the majority.

I think a marketing case could be made for a course promoting 4 hour games.  

We, as customers, have an opportunity (and responsibility?) to let our clubs know when we are not happy with the pace of play.  It's easier when you belong to the club - just talk with administration and express your concerns.  It's more difficult at clubs you visit, but we can still let them know that we're not happy with the pace of play and won't be returning (and we'll tell two friends, who will each tell two friends - you know how it multiplies).  As someone once said, if you're not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.
All the best in 2013, and may Santa bring you four hour rounds!

Edited by rogolf, 18 December 2012 - 09:27 PM.


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#2 5 O'Clock Charlie

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 09:39 PM

Well the average Joe watching golf on Sunday has to watch Jim Furyk back off of a 2 foot putt, 5 times.  That's not helping....
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#3 e fudd

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 09:50 PM

Great post...I might also suggest clubs find a way to make yardages more accessible for those without GPS/rangefinders. They should eject anyone seen talking on the phone--no warning and no exceptions. And lastly, anyone using headcovers for their irons should be banned from the game for life and forced to play tennis.

#4 Greenie

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 11:00 PM

I like my iron covers and I also love to play tennis. A win win for me.

#5 Thrillhouse

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 11:07 PM

Anyone who isn't playing because a round takes 5 hours isn't going to start if it gets whittled down to four. You still have to drive to the course, get there early, drive home, yadda yadda yadda. What's the difference to that person between a 6.5 hour commitment and a 5.5 hour commitment? His wife is still mad that he isn't around the house on a saturday and he still isn't there to drive the kids to soccer.

The "golf takes too long" argument has a lot more to do with how it fits into people's lives in 2012's societal family expectations than it does with pace of play.


#6 Greenie

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 11:47 PM

I disagree with you Thrillhouse. I have lost alot of people I use to play with because of 5 hr. rounds. I know half of them would come back if 4 hr. rounds were the norm. Yes you have to include travel time and all the rest involved but you have to draw the line time wise somewhere. I know my wife never says a word when I play a 4ish hr. round plus travel time but when it's a 5 hr. round sometimes I hear crap when I get home. Maybe I only have her trained for 4hr. rounds.
My main issue with that extra hr. is the type of round associated with that extra hr. I really believe that is the main concern of many of my friends that quit not actually that they didn't have another hr. to be out golfing. Let's face it some guys aren't in a hurry to get home anyway.

Edited by Greenie, 18 December 2012 - 11:49 PM.


#7 duffer987

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 11:53 PM

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#8 Socrates

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 12:22 AM

We aren't going to solve this anytime soon, but I think that rogolf has some valid points:
- insufficient time between tee times (should be 10 minutes minimum)
- golf course designs and layout - too difficult, too many tee choices
- beverage carts
- rules for use of golf carts - cart path only, 90* rule.  

The reality is that golf courses run on money and unfortunately, the people who are going to spend money on a course are your early 20's people who are mostly there for a good time and could care less about anything else.  Everyone complains about them, but when it comes down to it, a 4-some of clowns is going to spend about $200 -$300 (booze, food, balls, hats, etc…) above and beyond the green fee.  As much as you hate it, these guys are a huge part of the business.  The irony is that in about 15 years, they will be complaining about the guys they used to be.

On the other side of the coin, I just made my first trip to Scottsdale, AZ and there were two things that were just huge time killers.  Cart paths only easily added 45 minutes to one round and the other was no suitable yardage book.   Two of the courses had yardage cards and pin sheets printed out, but were absolutely useless since they were so small you couldn't read them (yeah, I'm over 40).  For goodness sake, 75% of the golfing pop. there is over 50 - cut us some slack on the 6pt. fonts.
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#9 Fourmyle of Ceres

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 03:58 AM

I've played 100-120 rounds a year, every year, since taking up the game back in the early 90's.

If it routinely took 5 hours to play a round I would quit. No question about it. In fact a steady diet of 4-1/2 rounds and I'd probably eventually quit. Five hours on a golf course standing around is not enjoyable, it isn't exercise, it isn't a game and there's no reason for it. That's 2-1/2 hours of golf broken up into 2-minute chunks and spread over a whole day. No thanks.

People play at whatever pace fits their expectations. Those expectations are definitely influenced by the emotional cripples they see acting spastic on televised golf but even without the Tour influence there are some people who are perfectly happy fiddling around for 4-1/2 hours or more. And all it takes is a handful of such slowpokes to force an entire course full of people to stand around and accommodate their urge to play slow.

That's the bottom line. The pace of play at a crowded golf course is set by the slowest individuals. It doesn't matter if 90% of the golfers on the course want to play in 2 hours, 3 hours, 4 hours, whatever. They are all forced to play at the 5-hour pace a few inconsiderate individuals set while indulging themselves.

#10 DaveLeeNC

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 08:18 AM

For me 4 1/2 hours is where it starts to 'become painful'. 5 hours becomes mind-numbing (to me). And it isn't an issue of available time it is just that it no longer seems like as much fun. I am fortunate to play on courses where it is rarely 'painful'.

One thing that I have noticed is that some of the 'tend to be slow guys' will look behind and ahead of them to check the overall status of things. If there is space in front and folks behind them then they will tend to get 'a little better'. But if the course is packed and everyone takes this attitude then it stays slow when if everyone would 'get a little better', things would get a little better.

I don't know if this 'mass psychology thing' is a factor or not.

dave

Edited by DaveLeeNC, 19 December 2012 - 08:19 AM.


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#11 freddyottawa

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 08:20 AM

Is there any statisical evidence that a round of golf now takes longer than it did, say 20 years ago? When did this actually become a problem? You can't expect every round to take 4 hours every single time, I don't believe that is realistic. It would certainly be awesome if it did, but I remember playing rounds 10-15 years ago and the difference in time taken then to now is almost nothing.

As for no cell phones? At most courses that is just not going to happen. Most people have their phone with them for a reason, that is why in some countries it is referred to as a mobile phone. I happen to be on call for work when I play some rounds of golf, so my phone stays on in the event I need to leave to go to work. Don't confuse this with someone who is just having a casual conversation with his buddy on the phone in the middle of the fairway while you are on the tee box waiting for him to hit, I hate that as much as the next guy.

The biggest issue I have seen in regards to slow play? Golf courses trying to cram as many people onto the golf course as they can in order to make as much money as possible. I don't blame them at all, afterall, in many places, courses are hurting for money. But tee times every 6 minutes which I have witnessed at courses, causes massive backlogs and leads to slow play through no ones fault on the course.
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#12 myspinonit

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 09:49 AM

Promoting Tee It Forward.  Concerted efforts to call them "Forward Tees", not "Women's Tees" (stigma attached).  Clear signage of what tees one is expected to use by handicap and average score or distance of tee shot. (The casual golfer may not have a handicap, but hopefully he/she has an idea whether he usually shoots 70's, 80's, low  90's, mid 90 up etc.)

Our seniors men's group has implemented  some specific steps and "local rules" for our group. Generally 75-80 guys, in a block of tee times. Average age is 72, most walk. Varying abilities from shooting their age occasionally to dreadful. Most of our rounds are on munis, and they give uis a block of times, so we want to keep the Parks Board  happy. Some games on other courses. We (and the munis) expect rounds to be completed in 4.25 hours. We generally make it.
  • We play from whites. Some with disabilities can get exemption (it's not automatic) to play from reds, and still compete for weekly prizes and most competitions from those tees.
  • A Foursome Captain is assigned to each foursome (first name on the tee sheet). Captain is charged to get his group to keep up with the group in front. Course Marshalls are told to speak to the foursome captain if they need to smarten up.
  • Last year we implemented a time clock to be punched by the foursome captain at the end and recorded by the Captain's Table. A club Director monitors the times. If a group has fallen behind at finish, he will investigate with the foursome captain and offending foursome members as needed.
  • Hit when ready...first guy done goes to the next tee if the group in front is getting ahead.
  • Edit: One more I forgot. Looking for lost balls is limited to 2 minutes.
A few more. I don't want to get into another  "Playing By the Rules" thread, but over time these have been approved by the membership, almost exclusively to solve slow play, and considering the age of our members.

Some are way to generous for my liking, and clearly against the Rules of Golf. But they are our own local rules. Don't shoot me, I'm just the messenger:
  • 6 inch lift clean and place preferred lie can be taken through the green other than hazards unless within a club length of non-staked trees, stump, OB.  (I might add we're in Vancouver, the "wet coast", so the course conditions from April to June and Sept- October can be in very soggy conditions, at least some years. What some areas might consider winter rules or lift clean and place course conditions. Many of we "younger" guys are more integral for playing it down.)
  • If no provisional is hit, and the ball turns out to be lost or OB, player can take a two stroke penalty drop no closer to the hole where his playing partners agree the ball first crossed the OB line or was lost. And (and this was added a couple of years  ago with some strong opposition, including from me) "a drop where his swing is free of interference". I will admit though that speed of play has improved once that was implemented- and that's why it was implemented.
  • Putters are marked with tape at standard length (I think it's 14 inches) by one at the Captain's Table. Gimmies in that range, other than some specific tournements and qualifying.

Edited by myspinonit, 19 December 2012 - 06:14 PM.

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#13 ghalfaire

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 09:55 AM

I like this post.  I would certainly agree that in my experience most courses are, and should be, interested in making a profit frist.  But as a result some do jam courses and there should be 10 minutes between tee times.  That would help but not fix the problem.  I think maybe alcohol should be banned from the playing field (yes I drink but not while playing).  While golf is a social game for most of us I think drinking contributes to slow play in some cases.  Just not enough trees on some courses.

But the most common problem I see is groups that just don't care that it takes 5 hours (plus sometimes) and/or don't know how to play using their time in an efficient manner or are on the wrong tees for their skill level. I won't go through the litany of thing they do or don't do to keep up as we all know what they are.  The only way I know to fix this issue is good rangers.  I have played on courses where if you have an open hole in front of you, you will be ask to pick up and move to the next tee (usually after an earlier warning to keep up) or leave the course.  Harsh but it works.

Finally having said all that, the game is not a race and a four hour round +/- a few minutes for a foursome is reasonable.  So those that can't wait to get to where ever they are going probably shouldn't be on the course if not willing to spend the four hours.

#14 Stretch

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 10:01 AM

Probably bad form to quote myself from another thread, but the OP is absolutely right. Course managers can do something about slow play if they are 1) willing to learn how and 2) motivated enough to make the necessary policy and staffing changes.

View PostStretch, on 25 May 2012 - 08:53 AM, said:

Following on from my post above, here's another recent article (PGA Magazine, Feb 2012) about a course management team that successfully took on slow play by addressing their policies rather than just bitching about player behavior.

Posted Image
Posted Image


This s*** really isn't rocket science.


#15 alfie

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 10:27 AM

To me, 4 1/2 hours pace for 18 holes, whether walking or riding seems FAIR for everyone (no matter skill level) should be all courses (public or private) should be aiming to enforce. Make it a point at the clubhouse when you sign in (or pay) that is what is expected. Then have the starter "politelly" remind everyone about it and have multiple course rangers out enforcing this (I know, easier said than done).

Edited by alfie, 19 December 2012 - 10:33 AM.


#16 rogolf

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 10:47 AM

View Postghalfaire, on 19 December 2012 - 09:55 AM, said:

I like this post.  I would certainly agree that in my experience most courses are, and should be, interested in making a profit frist.  But as a result some do jam courses and there should be 10 minutes between tee times.  That would help but not fix the problem.  I think maybe alcohol should be banned from the playing field (yes I drink but not while playing).  While golf is a social game for most of us I think drinking contributes to slow play in some cases.  Just not enough trees on some courses.

But the most common problem I see is groups that just don't care that it takes 5 hours (plus sometimes) and/or don't know how to play using their time in an efficient manner or are on the wrong tees for their skill level. I won't go through the litany of thing they do or don't do to keep up as we all know what they are.  The only way I know to fix this issue is good rangers.  I have played on courses where if you have an open hole in front of you, you will be ask to pick up and move to the next tee (usually after an earlier warning to keep up) or leave the course.  Harsh but it works.

Finally having said all that, the game is not a race and a four hour round +/- a few minutes for a foursome is reasonable.  So those that can't wait to get to where ever they are going probably shouldn't be on the course if not willing to spend the four hours.

Four hours generally includes some waiting on the group(s) in front.  Certainly the first groups off the tee with an empty course in front of them should be expected to finish in less than four hours.  If the first group takes four hours, every group behind them will take longer than 4 hours, eventually stretching to 5 -5.5

#17 myspinonit

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 11:06 AM

View Postrogolf, on 19 December 2012 - 10:47 AM, said:

View Postghalfaire, on 19 December 2012 - 09:55 AM, said:

I like this post.  I would certainly agree that in my experience most courses are, and should be, interested in making a profit frist.  But as a result some do jam courses and there should be 10 minutes between tee times.  That would help but not fix the problem.  I think maybe alcohol should be banned from the playing field (yes I drink but not while playing).  While golf is a social game for most of us I think drinking contributes to slow play in some cases.  Just not enough trees on some courses.

But the most common problem I see is groups that just don't care that it takes 5 hours (plus sometimes) and/or don't know how to play using their time in an efficient manner or are on the wrong tees for their skill level. I won't go through the litany of thing they do or don't do to keep up as we all know what they are.  The only way I know to fix this issue is good rangers.  I have played on courses where if you have an open hole in front of you, you will be ask to pick up and move to the next tee (usually after an earlier warning to keep up) or leave the course.  Harsh but it works.

Finally having said all that, the game is not a race and a four hour round +/- a few minutes for a foursome is reasonable.  So those that can't wait to get to where ever they are going probably shouldn't be on the course if not willing to spend the four hours.

Four hours generally includes some waiting on the group(s) in front.  Certainly the first groups off the tee with an empty course in front of them should be expected to finish in less than four hours.  If the first group takes four hours, every group behind them will take longer than 4 hours, eventually stretching to 5 -5.5

I disagree that the rounds will just need to get longer to 5+ as the day goes on. Or that groups necessarily need to be waiting on shots, or at least with regularity during a round. Not the case in my seniors group. And some of these guys bless them are 80+ and walking.  I've posted the steps we've taken. (and am just adding one I forgot to the post...hit when ready...first guy done goes to the next tee if the hole in front is getting ahead...) No it isn't perfect, and there are some holdups, and some culprits and we get on them best as we can. Hmmm..some of the olders guys are dropping out more quickly from attrition...that might be because of the faster play pressure...hmmmm

I'll also add I play on these muni courses in other times that aren't with our men's group that I assume I'll be done in 4.5 or less.

Edited by myspinonit, 19 December 2012 - 06:20 PM.

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#18 Shiram

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 12:41 PM

On Saturday or Sunday (with a foursome) I see golf as a full day event. For my regular Saturday game, I usually get to the club about 45 minutes to an hour before our tee time. I use that time to socialize and warm up. After the round we usually stick around for lunch / social time for at least another 1-2 hours. If there's a game on there's another couple of hours. So I'm usually gone for 7+ hours on Saturday.

So it's definitely not about the time for me - I can afford to play a 5-6 hour round. I just don't like to play a 5-6 hour round because the pacing is frustrating - you can't go anywhere but you feel the need to speed up so you don't slow down the group behind you. But I would agree with others in the thread above - I don't think a 4 hr round is going to bring many people back to the game.

That said, I do see guys at the club who come and play and immediately leave when the round is over to get back to family obligations etc. However, that's only when they have a special commitment - more often than not they stick around.


Now, during the week when I sneak out after work for a quick round. It's all about speed! Gotta beat that setting sun!

#19 rogolf

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 01:02 PM

View PostShiram, on 19 December 2012 - 12:41 PM, said:

On Saturday or Sunday (with a foursome) I see golf as a full day event. For my regular Saturday game, I usually get to the club about 45 minutes to an hour before our tee time. I use that time to socialize and warm up. After the round we usually stick around for lunch / social time for at least another 1-2 hours. If there's a game on there's another couple of hours. So I'm usually gone for 7+ hours on Saturday.

So it's definitely not about the time for me - I can afford to play a 5-6 hour round. I just don't like to play a 5-6 hour round because the pacing is frustrating - you can't go anywhere but you feel the need to speed up so you don't slow down the group behind you. But I would agree with others in the thread above - I don't think a 4 hr round is going to bring many people back to the game.

That said, I do see guys at the club who come and play and immediately leave when the round is over to get back to family obligations etc. However, that's only when they have a special commitment - more often than not they stick around.


Now, during the week when I sneak out after work for a quick round. It's all about speed! Gotta beat that setting sun!

I don't mind being away from home for 6-7 hours, but I certainly do mind a round taking more than 4 - 4 1/2 hours.  The additional 2 - 2 1/2 hours is "my time" and I like to spend it how I want (warming up, eat and drink after the round), and not have an inconsiderate group in front of me consuming it for me.  Long rounds on the course will make me leave the club quicker and much less likely to stick around after the round is over.

#20 Newby

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 01:53 PM

Has anyone done the arithmetic to see how much time is actually spent a) walking to your ball, b) searching, c) considering your options, e) making your stroke and putting your club back, e) repairing pitch marks, f) walking to the next tee and anything I've missed.
Think about how fast you really walk when pushing/pulling or carrying - and don't believe anyone who says 4mph
Remember when the pros are on the clock they get 40sec to consider and play.
Don't include green to tee as part of course length.

Do the math for a 4 ball and let's see the answers with the working. Some will be surprised.


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#21 Fourmyle of Ceres

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 02:09 PM

Does your math explain how 4-ball groups at my club routinely play (as in the same groups playing several times a week year round) in the neighborhood of three hours, five or ten minutes? Occasionally on a day when nobody hits it in the woods, under three hours. This is a mix of 2/3 walkers, 1/3 cart riders, all shooting in the 80's and 90's with an average age of around 60 years old.

The answer is, take however long those guy would require playing alone (around 2:40-2:50 typically) and add just a few seconds per shot for the lag between waiting on one guy to finish his swing and the next guy addressing the ball. If everyone stands there like a statue until it is their "turn" then four 2:45 single players will take about 4:45 to play because your 40 seconds of "considering" and whatnot are done sequentially.

That said, there are a couple of guys that play in these groups who will single-handedly add 30-40 minutes to the group's pace. We usually put them in the last group or two so everyone else can play at their natural pace. Which illustrates the point I've been making. Everyone behind one single slowpoke on the course is forced to his pace. It's very selfish, in my opinion, to play a round more than a minute or so per hole slower than the prevailing pace when there are people behind you. Because it's not "math" it's the simple fact of having someone ahead of you dinking around instead of playing golf that is at the root of the problem.

#22 rogolf

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 02:18 PM

View PostNewby, on 19 December 2012 - 01:53 PM, said:

Has anyone done the arithmetic to see how much time is actually spent a) walking to your ball, b) searching, c) considering your options, e) making your stroke and putting your club back, e) repairing pitch marks, f) walking to the next tee and anything I've missed.
Think about how fast you really walk when pushing/pulling or carrying - and don't believe anyone who says 4mph
Remember when the pros are on the clock they get 40sec to consider and play.
Don't include green to tee as part of course length.

Do the math for a 4 ball and let's see the answers with the working. Some will be surprised.
Walking the course, including from green to tee, normally takes 2 hours - try it at your home course by walking from 18th green back to 1st tee, the way you would walk it when playing.
Average time for each stroke = 20 seconds.  Some strokes will take longer, some (such as tap-ins) will be much shorter.  90 strokes = 30 minutes
Four ball, 4 x 30 minutes = 2 hours (this is high, as players will overlap the 20 seconds some of the times)  20 seconds on average is probably high.
Things like ball mark repair, bunker raking mainly occur while others are playing or getting ready to play.

4 hours for a fourball is easily achieved.

Edited by rogolf, 19 December 2012 - 02:19 PM.


#23 mark m

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 02:59 PM

You should not start your routine until the previous guy has fully finished. Your sponsors wouldn't like that. Less face time on camera means less exposure. So take your time and create value. Make sure your routine has a hitch in the giddy-up as well to milk it out as much as possible.

Oh wait....we're not on camera....please play without delay
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#24 Newby

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 03:27 PM

View Postrogolf, on 19 December 2012 - 02:18 PM, said:

Things like ball mark repair, bunker raking mainly occur while others are playing or getting ready to play.

If only !

#25 justaman5

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 03:40 PM

the number one reason for slow play is most players dont stand a chance of breaking 100 if the play by the rules.    sure i have been to courses that are public in a few different states on a saturday or a sunday.   you watch the majority of players and they could not stand inside a barn with the barn doors you can driver a tractor through wide open   and the player hit it out that barn door standing 5 feet inside it the shank top slice duck hook   and most have no clue where the ball is going even if then can hit it out of the barn door.

bad players cause slow play more than anything else

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#26 Fourmyle of Ceres

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 03:56 PM

I dunno, the slowest guy I regularly play with typically shoots 76-79 without particularly putting well. Never, ever hits a ball in the woods or water. When I play with him it take a full hour longer than playing by myself and I'm taking a stroke a hole more than him and have no idea where half my shots are going to end up.

He does it by stalking around for-bloody-ever doing his "routine" before every shot. Then on the greens he reads even a two-foot putt from all four sides at least twice and only then, after all the reading is done, does he pick up his towel and carefully wipe off the ball, then his hands, then the putter grip. Before every putt. Even tap-ins.

He is not the only person around whose slow play is caused entirely by things that are not "play" or even "golf" at all.

#27 myspinonit

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 04:16 PM

View Postjustaman5, on 19 December 2012 - 03:40 PM, said:

the number one reason for slow play is most players dont stand a chance of breaking 100 if the play by the rules. sure i have been to courses that are public in a few different states on a saturday or a sunday.   you watch the majority of players and they could not stand inside a barn with the barn doors you can driver a tractor through wide open   and the player hit it out that barn door standing 5 feet inside it the shank top slice duck hook   and most have no clue where the ball is going even if then can hit it out of the barn door.

bad players cause slow play more than anything else

Well, those same folks, probably mostly taxpayers residing in the area you are visiting, are out there giving revenue to a public course in  an activity they enjoy and therefore helping to keep it open. I've seen it on a number of different places on the net in recent years that the AVERAGE golfer still shoots around 100. So it sounds like you unfortunately are playing behind a group of average local taxpayer golfers on your visits.

If  a terrible player (or foursome) Uses appropriate tees for their ability, keeps walking and is ready to go without  a bunch of practice swings, plays ready golf, takes a drop if they don't find their ball  after  a quick check, pick up if they fall behind, take tap-ins etc, they can and do keep up. If they don't, I agree that's a problem.  That goes with the education, Marshall enforcement etc. that myself and others have suggested as ways to address the problem ones. You will have noticed that doing so, I am giving them a pass NOT to play strictly by the rules for their own enjoyment and others for speed of play in such situations.

The other problem that I see is the better/good players (or those who THINK they are), who seem to agonize forever on a full shot with several practice swings, a back away, then away we go again. Same thing (sometimes worse) when it's putt for dough time. I know a lot of real hackers who might hit the ball several times, but still get it from tee to hole faster. Same education and enforcement issues.

So in short as a 19 cap who plays mostly on munis, plays very quickly, and plays with folks regularly from very high cap to low cap, and we don't hold folks up, I disagree with your generalization.

Edited by myspinonit, 19 December 2012 - 04:27 PM.

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#28 Shiram

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 04:27 PM

View PostFourmyle of Ceres, on 19 December 2012 - 03:56 PM, said:

I dunno, the slowest guy I regularly play with typically shoots 76-79 without particularly putting well. Never, ever hits a ball in the woods or water. When I play with him it take a full hour longer than playing by myself and I'm taking a stroke a hole more than him and have no idea where half my shots are going to end up.

He does it by stalking around for-bloody-ever doing his "routine" before every shot. Then on the greens he reads even a two-foot putt from all four sides at least twice and only then, after all the reading is done, does he pick up his towel and carefully wipe off the ball, then his hands, then the putter grip. Before every putt. Even tap-ins.

He is not the only person around whose slow play is caused entirely by things that are not "play" or even "golf" at all.

+1

Slow play is not directly related to what you shoot. Yes, if you take more shots than you usually do - you'll player slower than usual by # of strokes * setup/stroke time. But by and large slow play is caused by things other than how many strokes it takes you to get to the green.

#29 Fourmyle of Ceres

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 04:31 PM

We can look at it this way. What's the range between someone who generally shoots a really, really good score and someone who shoots a lot of really awful scores? Less than 2:1 ratio, right? I mean 65 is pretty darned great and 115 is pretty darned lousy and that's way less than 2:1 ratio.

Yet on a single shot, it's easy to find someone who takes twice as long or even three times as long as a fast player. So it's totally more about how long per stroke than how many strokes...as long as we're not talking about repeatedly taking "5 minutes" to search for balls in the woods or rough. That's the way that poor players can take all day, never giving a ball up for lost.

#30 myspinonit

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 04:42 PM

View PostFourmyle of Ceres, on 19 December 2012 - 04:31 PM, said:

We can look at it this way. What's the range between someone who generally shoots a really, really good score and someone who shoots a lot of really awful scores? Less than 2:1 ratio, right? I mean 65 is pretty darned great and 115 is pretty darned lousy and that's way less than 2:1 ratio.

Yet on a single shot, it's easy to find someone who takes twice as long or even three times as long as a fast player. So it's totally more about how long per stroke than how many strokes...as long as we're not talking about repeatedly taking "5 minutes" to search for balls in the woods or rough. That's the way that poor players can take all day, never giving a ball up for lost.
+1   The look then drop time is the biggy when balls get sprayed everywhere. I know a couple of marshalls who carry spare balls they find and toss them to guys looking for balls and they take it, hit it and that gets them moving. So it ain't the strokes they are worried about,  it's buck-fifty  they spent on that Noodle that went in the woods!!

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