Thursday, January 13, 2011

The 90 degree rule - what is it?

I was in the golf shop the other day and overheard a customer asking one of our assistant pro's about the 90 degree rule. Tom did a fantastic job of explaining to the customer how this rule worked and thought I would take the time right now to explain the rule again.

There is an old joke that goes, "You want to know about the 90 degree rule? Well it's nowhere near that hot so don't worry about it!" This is not exactly the rule that we are talking about.

The 90 degree rule refers to cart traffic. The 90-Degree Rule is something golf courses may put into place when they want to allow the convenience of golf carts but minimize the impact of those carts on the golf course.

When the 90-Degree Rule is in effect, golfers are required to keep carts on the cart path until they are even with a golf ball on the golf course. Only then should the cart leave the path, turning sharply (90 degrees) to drive straight across to the golf ball. After playing the shot, the cart should be driven directly back to the cart path, then remain on the path until pulling even with another ball. In this manner, golfers have the convenience of carts but damage to the course is minimized.

The above picture depicts a golf hole and the location of two golf shots indicated by the #1 and #2 in the black circles. The two lines indicate how the driving style of a cart correctly follow the 90 degree rule (red line) and incorrectly follows the rule thus causing damage to the turf and ultimately poor lies (black line).

The 90-Degree Rule is permanenty in effect at many courses; at others, it will be put into effect following rains or when course conditions warrant. Look for signs near the first tee that might indicate whether the condition is in effect, or ask in the pro shop.

Even when the 90-Degree Rule is not in effect at a course, it's a good practice to follow because it helps maintain a healthier turf.


  1. Nice post Josh, I may have to use this one to remind my golfers too.

  2. No problem Dave, we all need help with cart traffic! I actually checked out your blog yesterday and I must say "WOW!" The site and your course look fantanstic. I hope that you have a great weekend!

  3. Another great reminder. Your marshals at Dairy do a pretty good job of reminding us, but a refresher is always good. Thanks,

  4. Dear Josh,
    I just wanted to send a note thanking you, Kent, Sean and everyone else involved in last Saturday's event. I can't remember when I've enjoyed a more perfect day on the golf course.
    Thinking back, I particularly enjoyed the change of holes, the perfect drive on 17 (never been there before) the choice of holes to shoot for with the extra large cup, the popcorn on 8, and the outstanding lunch.
    You and your team were very generous on the raffle as well.
    Someone certainly worked hard putting this event together, and I suspect it was a number of you.
    If you wanted me to feel appreciated, you certainly succeeded. I still think about what a great day it was.


    Michael Nielson