The Rules of Golf and its Decisions Get a Makeover for 2008

The Rules of Golf and its Decisions Get a Makeover for 2008
Find out about some of the most significant rules changes

The United States Golf Association, in conjunction with the Royal & Ancient Rules Limited in St. Andrews, Scotland, writes, interprets and maintains the Rules of Golf to guard the tradition and integrity of the game. The two organizations are joint authors and owners of The Rules of Golf and Decisions on the Rules of Golf. Every four years, the USGA and R & A revise the Rules of Golf, while the Decisions on the Rules are revised every two years. On January 1, 2008, revisions for both the Rules of Golf and its Decisions will take effect. While all of the changes are important, we've highlighted a few of the changes that players are more likely to encounter. For a complete list of changes, please visit the USGA's Web site here.

Rule 4-1: Carrying a Non-Conforming Club

OLD: Prior to 2008, if a player carried a club during the round which was non-conforming, the player would be disqualified.

REVISED: Now the penalty for just carrying a non-conforming club has been softened and revised to reflect the similar penalty for carrying more than 14 clubs. Instead of disqualification, the penalty is now a loss of hole in match play or two strokes in stroke play for each hole you carry the non-conforming club with a maximum of two holes deducted or four penalty strokes tacked on. However, if the player uses a non-conforming club to make a stroke, the player will be disqualified.

Rule 12-2: Identification of Golf Ball in Hazards (Bunkers and Water Hazards)

OLD: Prior to 2008, if a ball was in a bunker or water hazard and you could not identify it, usually due to the ball being covered by sand or mud, you were not allowed to lift that ball for identification. Players would not be penalized for playing a wrong ball from a hazard.

REVISED: Now a player will be able to lift his ball for identification anywhere on the course, including bunkers and water hazards. Along with that privilege comes the penalty for playing a wrong ball anywhere on the course (two strokes).

Rule 19-2: Hitting Yourself (Penalty Reduced)

OLD: Prior to 2008, if a player hit a ball and it deflected off a tree or lip of a bunker and came back to hit the player, the penalty would be two strokes in stroke play or loss of hole in match play.

REVISED: Now the penalty for your own ball striking you, your partner, either of your caddies or any of your side's equipment will only be a one-stroke penalty in either stroke play or match play.

Rule 24-1: Moving a Flagstick (Movable Obstruction)

OLD: Prior to 2008, if a player hit a putt and the ball was rolling toward the flagstick that was laying on the green and another player moved the flagstick to prevent the ball from striking it, the person that moved the flagstick would be penalized two strokes.

REVISED: Now if a flagstick has been removed and is laying on the putting green when a player hits his putt too strong, another player may pick up the flagstick and let the player's ball roll by to wherever it was heading without incurring a penalty.

Premier Partners
Official Partners
Media Partners
Association Partner
Twitter Facebook AJGA Blog AJGA on Instagram AJGA on YouTube
Member Logins
Player, Coach and Alumni Login
Member ID:
Forgot your password?
Don't have a password?
Forgot your Member ID?
Not A Member or Need to Renew?
What every member should know
Learn the basics
Performance Based Entry
Leadership Links
ACE Grant financial aid
Polo Golf Rankings
1. Chun-an Yu
Taoyuan, --
2. Philip Barbaree
Shreveport, LA
3. Eugene Hong
Sanford, FL
4. Davis Shore
knoxville, TN
5. Won Jun Lee
Wesley Chapel, FL
1. Nelly Korda
Bradenton, FL
2. Hannah O'Sullivan
Chandler, AZ
3. Angel Yin
Arcadia, CA
4. Mika Liu
Beverly Hills, CA
5. Sierra Brooks
Sorrento, FL
Complete Rankings

The Foundation

The American Junior Golf Foundation is the primary recipient of all charitable giving to the AJGA and as such administers a variety of programs designed to compliment the AJGA and the members and families who make up our community. Learn more about these important programs and how your contributions to the Foundation secure the AJGA’s financial future for future generations to come.
Donate Now
Planned Giving Program
Endow an ACE Grant
Annual Fund
ACE Grant


The Achieving Competitive Excellence (ACE) Grant program provides financial assistance to junior golfers who wish to play in AJGA events. Its goal is to give top-flight golf opportunities to young golfers regardless of financial resources. This program helps to fulfill the AJGA’s mission of developing young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf.

Leadership Links

What is Leadership Links?

Leadership Links is a new program whereby the AJGA is able to further its mission to help develop young men and women by teaching charitable giving skills and service-oriented practices at an early age. This program gives juniors all the tools necessary to donate their time, talent and resources to local charities and the AJGA youth development programs. Please click here to learn more about the program and the different opportunities available.

Weekly Results
Polo Golf Junior Classic
S.M. Lee
Won Jun Lee
Matthew Wolff
Mariel Galdiano
Andrea Lee
Maria Hoyos
FJ Live Scoring
The American Junior Golf Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the overall growth and
development of young men and women who aspire to earn college golf scholarships through competitive junior golf.