Minnesota Golf Association

Rules of Golf

The United States Golf Association (USGA) and The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews, Scotland (R&A), jointly write and interpret the Rules of Golf to guard the tradition and integrity of the game. The latest version went into effect in 2012.

The Minnesota Golf Association (MGA) is readily available to provide answers to any Rules of Golf questions or concerns. The MGA is an experienced liaison between the USGA - the ultimate authority on the Rules of Golf - and its Member Clubs.

In March 2018, the R&A and USGA announced the final draft of the Rules of Golf that will take effect on January 1, 2019.  The changes result from the Rules Modernization initiative that began six years prior in an effort to bring the Rules up to date to fit the needs of today's global game.

The initiative had two guiding themes:

  • Even far-reaching Rule changes should be open for discussion, but golf's essential principles and character must be preserved.
  • Revisions should be assessed with all golfers in mind, so that the Rules are easier to understand and apply not only for professionals and elite amateurs, but also for beginners, high-handicappers and typical club and recreational golfers at all levels of play around the world.
Click HERE for more information on the changes and to see the modernized Rules set to take effect on January 1, 2019.

The MGA also is available to assist Member Clubs with any rules questions, as well as assist with course marking questions and to provide rules programs tailored for its golfers.  For more information, please contact Doug Hoffmann, MGA Director of Rules and Competitions, at Doug@mngolf.org.

USGA Resources


MGA Rules & Tournament Volunteer Education Programs

The MGA conducts rules education programs for all individuals - beginners to tournament players, rules novices to experienced tournament officials.  Rarely will a person be able to say he knows the Rules well enough.  And, the Rules can help players be more confident when playing because they can be certain that the relief procedure they followed is correct.  If you play golf, you should attend!

The list of available Rules Education programs offered by the MGA in 2018 is available below!  Due to the release of the "Modernized Rules" in 2019, there will be a limited number of Half-Day sessions focusing on the current, more common Rules and relief scenarios. Click HERE to register online.
  • MGA Tournament Volunteer Orientation                   Click HERE to register!
    The Orientation is for individuals who wish to become a Tournament Volunteer or Rules Official for the MGA.  The program covers the steps necessary to become a volunteer, the different classifications of tournament volunteer, expectations (of you and the MGA) and the other details of volunteering for the MGA.  This is required for anyone who wants to become a Tournament Volunteer.  Cost is free. (2 hours)
  • MGA Half-Day Rules of Golf Sessions                      Click HERE to register!
    This half-day (4 hour) workshop will focus on the more common Rules and relief scenarios.  Instruction will include a PowerPoint presentation and video segments as well as interactive discussion.  For the morning sessions, coffee, soda and water will be available at registration.  However, lunch will be provided at the conclusion of the program.  Attendees receive the current USGA Rules of Golf and Decisions on the Rules of Golf books and other material.  This workshop is open to anyone who wants a review of the more common Rules.  Perfect for competitive players, recreational golfers, persons interested in becoming or are currently volunteering as tournament officials, and professionals and the staff at golf courses.  Cost: $25/person. (4 hours)
  • MGA Two-Day Rules & Officiating Workshop
    There will not be a Two-Day workshop in 2018.  Check back in Fall of '18 for the workshop list for the new Rules to be effective in 2019! 

PDF Download
Download the MGA Conditions of Competition

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