Top 12 Ways to “Cheat” at Golf

Golf is hard. Make it easier by employing one or all of the below “strategies.”
Top 12 Ways to "Cheat" at Golf

1. Take a drop on an errant tee shot instead of returning to the tee. USGA rules say a lost or out of bounds tee shot must be rehit from the tee. You also have to take a stroke penalty. Of course, this will add lots of time to round, but rules are rules, people. Hence, the majority of players take drops instead.

2. Play a scramble. The popular team tournament format is a lot of fun. Play the best lie, and leave the course happy, regardless of your personal performance. Of course, this format is also illegal according to USGA rules. So don’t do it anymore. Unless of course you play golf for your own enjoyment instead of being a Golf Puritan.

3. Pick up and clean your ball. Muddy golf balls are lame and can screw up your shot. Do the right thing and pick them up to clean or improve your lie. And by right thing I really mean cheat.

4. Whack away surrounding plant life for better swing access. Bushes and tree limbs are always getting in the way of my swing. Thankfully, my iron doubles as sickle. Having played golf for 17 years, I don’t think I’ve ever played with a group of friends that welcomes swing improvement without literally picking up the ball.

5. Score with gimme putts. The gimme putt has always made me chuckle. It ranges anywhere from two inches to two feet depending on the time of day and one’s performance. Of course, it too is verboten in USGA play. (And yet, 99% of all players implore some variation of this.)

6. Throw the ball or toss it instead of dropping it. What’s the point of “dropping” if you can’t improve your current predicament? At least that’s what my grandfather always used to say. So unless you're a professional or in an official USGA sanctioned tournament, most players go with a light toss to avoid the really rough stuff.

7. Standing behind a player while s/he putts. It doesn’t matter that if you’re engaged in a friendly round of golf. This is against USGA rules and should not be allowed under any circumstances.

8. Carrying more than 14 clubs. When’s the last time you checked your buddy’s club count? If you insist on playing USGA rules at all times, you better check. Chances are at least one of your play partners is packing extra clubs.

9. Asking your play partners what club they hit. Another no-no. And it doesn’t matter if you’re still trying to learn the game. Playing a round is not the time to improve your game. That’s what practice is for. Remember, a golf course is hallowed ground. Don’t disrespect it by learning a thing or two as you play on them in a friendly competition.

10. Grounding your club on practice swings. Never, ever ground your club while practicing a shot. You are only allowed to air swing. Same goes for sand trap practice swings. We wouldn’t want anyone improving their ball strike before hand, now would we? Either get with the program or get out of the game.

11. Putting with the flag pole in. I don’t care if your incredible approach shot is only inches away from the hole. Always remove the flag pole or suffer the one stroke penalty. What are we playing for fun or something? This game is serious and should be treated as such at all times and all places.

12. Play an antislice golf ball. Why did I title my story with “cheat” in quotations? In addition to being facetious and sensational, it was also to prove a point, which is this: While all 12 of the above behaviors are banned in professional and other USGA sanctioned tournaments, they are perfectly acceptable for the 85% of golfers that play for recreational, social, and convenience reasons. A self-correcting Polara golf ball is no different. It improves your golf game, thus making the game more enjoyable by playing from the fairway, losing fewer balls, and speeding up play. The anti-slice golf balls work so well, they were even praised in a feature by Fox News!

Of course, Polara Golf will never condone moral cheaters that lie about their score — that’s wrong in any context. But we welcome all of the above in the appropriate setting (which is how recreational golf is played).

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