Golf players are allowed a maximum of 14 clubs stuffed in their bags during tournament rounds. This is in accord with the rules. You can bring less than 14 clubs but not in excess of that.
You cannot change any of the 14 clubs while playing in a round. You must finish the round with just the 14 clubs except when a club breaks and you would need to have it replaced.
You can add more clubs if you started the round with less than 14 golf clubs. However, you are not allowed to borrow clubs from another player.
Is there a Penalty for Adding More Clubs (In Excess of 14 Golf Clubs)?
It is advised to always count your golf clubs before you enter the tournament because if you have an extra club (15 th golf club) in your bag, you would be penalized for that. The penalty for this would depend on the tournament you’re participating in.
You will be deducted one hole from your total score. Each hole is equivalent to an extra golf club used f0r each hole or a maximum deduction of two holes.
The penalty for this
Why is there an Imposed Limit on Golf Clubs?
This was not the scenario back then. In the 20 th century, golfers would bring around 20 to 25 clubs during games. Many professional and amateur golfers would habitually bring more clubs (a combination of hickory-shifted clubs and steel-shafted clubs) during tournaments to increase their chances of meeting their targets.
Golf Club Limits
The governing bodies of the golf association then imposed a limit on the number of clubs that golf players can bring in tournaments to avoid any cheating or to equalize the system. USGA then introduced the 14-club limit in 1983 which was later on implemented in 1939 upon adoption of the R&A.
Back then, the penalty for excess in golf clubs was automatic disqualification from playing a game. This was then changed with a penalty of two strokes for each hole in stroke matches and deduction of a hole for match play. There is no limit to the penalty as you would get penalized for every extra golf club you would use for any hole in that round.
This actually has an advantage for golfers because their skills are tested and challenged with the limited array of clubs that they can use in professional and amateur matches. On a practical note, having a maximum allowed number of golf clubs is good for your spine too because having more than 14 clubs in your golf bag would be very heavy and can put a strain on your back. Golf clubs are also pricey so this does not just lighten up your caddie’s workload but also keeps expenses at bay.
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Exceptions to the Golf Club Rule
It’s okay to bring more than 14 gold clubs in your golf bag when you are on practice and not in actual game or tournament. So, the strict implementation of this penalty in line with exceeding the maximum number of allowed golf clubs is limited only to games or tournaments and not for recreational or practice purposes.
If you are new in the golf industry and at playing the game, then you normally would not need 14 clubs. You can easily cut that into any number below the maximum allowed. This is very cost-effective considering the price tags for golf clubs and also makes selection pretty easier than having to choose among all 14 golf clubs per round.
Preferred Golf Clubs by Professional Golfers
There are different kinds or type of golf clubs to choose from in tournaments. Hybrid golf clubs is a cross between that of wood and iron. Many professional golfers prefer hybrid because it’s easier to control than the long irons. Yes, it’s a classic favorite.
The hit is pretty solid with the combination of wood and iron. Having a wooden golf club is a must because this is very usable in almost all holes as this provides more leverage for the ball. This is great for long shots.
Every professional golfer would need a putter. There are different types and styles to select from.
However, you must base your choice on comfort and functionality – more than the aesthetics or style.
Check on its overall feel, weight, and length. Test different types or models when shopping for a putter so you would have more options and can choose one that suits you best.
Any professional golfer would take heed of the rules and limit their golf clubs to just 14. However, there are times that even professional athletes would have slips and would accidentally bring excess clubs and use them in matches. Sticking to the rules of golf would be your best bet to be a successful and well-respected golf player who is hungry to win but stays within the boundaries.