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Charles Mickle Golf Academy



'Mit Sicherheit Charles Mickle ist einer der besten Golflehrer Europas in der heutigen Zeit'

'Without doubt Charles Mickle is one of the finest and most accomplished golf instructors in Europe'.





During 1744 the committee of the Honorable Company of Edinburgh Golfers drew up the first 13 rules of golf. The purpose of these rules was to allow fair play for the competition of winning the silver golf club which was given to the winner by the City of Edinburgh, over Leith Links. The first winner of the tournament was a Mr. John Rattray who because of the win became the captain of the club.


The rules that were devised were:-

Articles & Laws in Playing at Golf.

1. You must Tee your Ball within a Club's length of the Hole.

2. Your Tee must be upon the Ground.

3. You are not to change the Ball which you Strike off the Tee.

4. You are not to remove Stones, Bones or any Break Club, for the sake of playing your Ball, Except upon the fair Green and that only / within a Club's length of your Ball.

5. If your Ball comes among watter, or any wattery filth, you are at liberty to take out your Ball & bringing it behind the hazard and Teeing it, you may play it with any Club and allow your Adversary a Stroke for so getting out your Ball.

6. If your Balls be found any where touching one another, You are to lift the first Ball, till you play the last.

7. At Holling, you are to play your Ball honestly for the Hole, and not to play upon your Adversary’s Ball, not lying in your way to the Hole.

8. If you should lose your Ball, by it's being taken up, or any other way, you are to go back to the Spot, where you struck last, & drop another Ball, And allow your adversary a Stroke for the misfortune.

9. No man at Holling his Ball, is to be allowed, to mark his way to the Hole with his Club, or anything else.

10. If a Ball be stopp’d by any Person, Horse, Dog or anything else, The Ball so stop’d must be play’d where it lyes.

11. If you draw your Club in Order to Strike, & proceed so far in the Stroke as to be bringing down your Club; If then, your Club shall break, in any way, it is to be Accounted a Stroke.

12. He whose Ball lyes farthest from the Hole is obliged to play first.

13. Neither Trench, Ditch or Dyke, made for the preservation of the Links, nor the Scholar's Holes, or the Soldier's Lines, Shall be accounted a Hazard; But the Ball is to be taken out teed /and play’d with any Iron Club.

John Rattray, Capt

In 1754, twenty-two gentlemen formed the Society of St Andrews Golfers whom adopting the code of rules laid down by the Honorable Company of Edinburgh Golfers founded in 1744. Until 1764 the Old Course at St. Andrews had 22 holes which were played by the Society of St Andrews Golfers.

Changes to the Rules of Golf November 2013


The R&A and USGA has released their latest update of 'Decisions on the Rules of Golf'. A total of 87 changes have been made, but four stand out.

The first could be construed as direct response to an incident involving Tiger Woods earlier this year. Woods was assessed a two shot penalty in a PGA tour event when he was deemed to have caused his ball to move when removing a loose impediment. 

While it is not unusual for a player to accidently move his ball and be assessed a penalty. What was unusual was the fact that the ball could only be seen to move when viewed at slow motion on high definition TV camera.  The new decision on the that rule now states:

New Decision 18/4 provides that, where enhanced technological evidence (e.g. HDTV, digital recording or online visual media, etc.) shows that a ball has left its position and come to rest in another location, the ball will not be deemed to have moved if that movement was not reasonably discernible to the naked eye at the time. The R&A and the USGA have issued a Joint Statement on the Use of Video and other Visual Evidence to further explain the governing bodies’ position on the use of this technology. 

The second significant change allows players to access weather reports via smart phones:

New Decision 14-3/18 confirms that players can access reports on weather conditions on a smartphone during a round without breaching the Rules. Importantly, this new Decision also clarifies that players are permitted to access information on the threat of an impending storm in order to protect their own safety. 

Thirdly, to help clarify if a ball is embedded or not, the R&A have illustrated the rule:

Revised Decision 25-2/0.5 
Embedded Ball
The fourth change relates to playing a provisional ball:

Revised Decision 27-2a/1.5 allows a player to go forward up to approximately 50 yards without forfeiting his or her right to go back and play a provisional ball.



The revision is designed to prevent some disqualifications as a result of players signing incorrect scorecards.

Remember Padraig Harrington's ball on the green wiggled as he replaced his marker in Dubai earlier this year?  He was certain that it came to rest in its original position.

But television replays in slow-motion and high-definition show that, in fact, Harrington's ball did not return to its original position. It had moved. The movement was perceptible only in slow-mo high-def. But since Harrington didn't assess himself a penalty, he wound up signing an incorrect scorecard and was disqualified.


That is exactly the situation the rules revision addresses: "... where disqualifications have been caused by score card errors identified as the result of recent advances in video technologies" - e.g., super-slow mo and high-def - a committee can now waive the disqualification if it is convinced the player "could not reasonably have discovered" the breach prior to signing his or her scorecard. The underlying penalty for the breach will still be applied to the golfer's score.



This is a revision to Decision 33-7/4.5 and went into effect just prior to the start of the Masters.


USGA Executive Director Mike Davis commented;


"This is a logical and important step in our re-evaluation of the impact of high-definition video on the game.

We collectively believe that this revised decision addresses many video-related issues never contemplated by the Rules of Golf."


"After a competitor has signed and returned his score card, it becomes known, through the use of a high-definition video replay, that the player unknowingly touched a few grains of sand with his club at the top of his backswing on a wall of the bunker. The touching of the sand was so light that, at the time, it was reasonable for the player to have been unaware that he had breached Rule 13-4. It would be appropriate for the Committee to waive the disqualification penalty and apply the two-stroke penalty to the player's score at the hole in question."

"After a competitor has signed and returned his score card, it becomes known, through the use of a high-definition video replay, that the player unknowingly touched a few grains of sand with his club at the top of his backswing on a wall of the bunker. The touching of the sand was so light that, at the time, it was reasonable for the player to have been unaware that he had breached Rule 13-4. It would be appropriate for the Committee to waive the disqualification penalty and apply the two-stroke penalty to the player's score at the hole in question."



Principal Changes Introduced into the 2012 Code

Rules of Golf


Addressing the Ball

The Definition is amended so that a player has addressed the ball simply by grounding his club immediately in front of or behind the ball, regardless of whether or not he has taken his stance. Therefore, the Rules generally no longer provide for a player addressing the ball in a hazard. (See also related change to Rule 18-2b)




Rule 1-2. Exerting Influence on Movement of Ball or Altering Physical Conditions

The Rule is amended to establish more clearly that, if a player intentionally takes an action to influence the movement of a ball or to alter physical conditions affecting the playing of a hole in a way that is not permitted by the Rules, Rule 1-2 applies only when the action is not already covered in another Rule. For example, a player improving the lie of his ball is in breach of Rule 13-2 and therefore that Rule would apply, whereas a player intentionally improving the lie of a fellow-competitor’s ball is not a situation covered by Rule 13-2 and, therefore, is governed by Rule 1-2.

Rule 6-3a. Time of Starting

Rule 6-3a is amended to provide that the penalty for starting late, but within five minutes of the starting time, is reduced from disqualification to loss of the first hole in match play or two strokes at the first hole in stroke play. Previously this penalty reduction could be introduced as a condition of competition.

VIDEO: Rule 6-3a Explained

Rule 12-1. Seeing Ball; Searching for Ball

Rule 12-1 is reformatted for clarity. In addition, it is amended to (i) permit a player to search for his ball anywhere on the course when it may be covered by sand and to clarify that there is no penalty if the ball is moved in these circumstances, and (ii) apply a penalty of one stroke under Rule 18-2a if a player moves his ball in a hazard when searching for it when it is believed to be covered by loose impediments.


Rule 13-4. Ball in Hazard; Prohibited Actions

Exception 2 to Rule 13-4 is amended to permit a player to smooth sand or soil in a hazard at any time, including before playing from that hazard, provided it is for the sole purpose of caring for the course and Rule 13-2 is not breached.

VIDEO: Rule 13-4 Explained

Rule 18-2b. Ball Moving After Address

A new Exception is added that exonerates the player from penalty if his ball moves after it has been addressed when it is known or virtually certain that he did not cause the ball to move. For example, if it is a gust of wind that moves the ball after it has been addressed, there is no penalty and the ball is played from its new position.

VIDEO: Rule 18-2b Explained

Rule 19-1. Ball in Motion Deflected or Stopped; By Outside Agency

The note is expanded to prescribe the various outcomes when a ball in motion has been deliberately deflected or stopped by an outside agency.

Rule 20-7c. Playing from Wrong Place; Stroke Play

Note 3 is amended so that if a player is to be penalised for playing from a wrong place, in most cases the penalty will be limited to two strokes, even if another Rule has been breached prior to his making the stroke.

Appendix IV

A new Appendix is added to prescribe general regulations for the design of devices and other equipment, such as tees, gloves and distance measuring devices.





Rules of Amateur Status


Rule 3-2a — Exception amended to clarify a cash prize for a hole-in-one made while playing golf is permissible.


Rule 4-2b — Note added regarding the rules of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA).


Rule 4-2c — Note added regarding the rules of the NCAA.


Rule 6-2 — Exception added for a player promoting (a) his national, state or county union or association, (b) certain types of golf competitions or events or (c) a recognized charity.

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