Golf’s new Rules have been published by The R&A and the USGA ahead of coming into effect on 1 January 2019.
For the first time, a new Player’s Edition of the Rules of Golf is being introduced to provide a shorter, more user-friendly version of the Rules for golfers at all levels of the sport. This version, which will serve as the primary publication for all golfers, features:
• A more intuitive organisation with ten simplified topical groupings
• A “Purpose of the Rule” description at the top of each Rule, to better define why the Rule exists
• Easy-to-follow, full-colour diagrams and charts
• A simpler, more direct writing style.
Four million copies of the Player’s Edition will be distributed by The R&A and the USGA, all with the support of Rolex. The new book will be translated into more than 30 different languages. Approximately 800,000 copies have been distributed among over 3,000 clubs and societies in Great Britain and Ireland.
The Player’s Edition is being launched alongside the modernised full Rules of Golf book, which includes some of the most significant changes made to the Rules in more than 60 years.
David Rickman, Executive Director – Governance at The R&A, said, “We are delighted to be rolling out the modernised Rules of Golf today. This is the biggest set of changes to the Rules in a generation and a major step forward in our efforts to make the Rules, and golf itself, more accessible and more in tune with the way the modern sport is played.”
A new Official Guide to the Rules of Golf is also available in digital, on website and app, from today, with a printed version being released in November. Designed for golf administrators and club officials, the Guide features Interpretations on specific Rules (which replace the current Decisions) and includes the first jointly-produced Committee Procedures document providing practical guidance to Committees for running competitions and overseeing general play.
Another key feature is the Modified Rules of Golf for Players with Disabilities. This document is released alongside the Rules of Golf and enables players with disabilities to play fairly with other players with the same or different types of disability and, importantly, with those without disabilities. The Modified Rules were developed in close consultation with the community of players with disabilities and disability organisations.
All of the new books are available in digital formats on www.randa.org and through The R&A Rules of Golf app. A range of explanatory videos and resources are available to enable all golfers to learn about the 2019 Rules.
England Golf is among the organisations running extensive educational programmes to ensure that golfers and administrators throughout amateur and professional golf are ready for the new Rules when they take effect on 1 January.