The Basics of Golf

Our goal is to make golf approachable for all. To make people feel comfortable with the game. Whether you're picking up your first club, going to the range for the first time, or playing in your first competition; we want to be there with you to help  accomplish your goals. You will find with golf, there are a lot of "firsts". Firsts that can be both inspiring, and devastating. But with those firsts, come life lessons that will strengthen your mind and humble your character. Anyone can play golf, so lets get started.

“Golf can best be defined as an endless series of tragedies obscured by the occasional miracle.”
— Unknown

Golf clubs

You are allowed, by rule, to have 14 clubs in your golf bag. Each club designed to hit the ball a different distance. There are more than 14 clubs to choose from, but we will walk through the most common selection of 14 clubs.

2 Quick Facts

  • Below, we start with the club that will hit the ball the farthest (driver), and work our way down.
  • Clubs are defined (in simplest form) by two things: the angle of the club face, and name of the club. The lower the angle of the club face, the farther the ball should go.
  1. Driver - 8 - 12 degrees
  2. 3 Wood - 13 - 16 degrees
  3. 5 Wood - 22 - 26 degrees
  4. 3 Iron - 15 degrees
  5. 4 Iron - 20 degrees
  6. 5 Iron - 25 degrees
  7. 6 Iron - 30 degrees
  8. 7 Iron - 35 degrees
  9. 8 Iron - 40 degrees
  10. 9 Iron - 45 degrees
  11. Pitching Wedge - 48 degrees
  12. Gap Wedge - 52 degrees
  13. Sand Wedge - 56, 58 or 60 degrees
  14. Putter - 3 degrees

Alright, that's the golf club walk through folks. If you want some advice on picking your first set out head over to our golf club blog post!

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golf bag

Once you have your clubs, you will most definitely need a bag to carry those clubs. The key to the golf bag starts with understanding your use-case.

  • Will you walk when you golf? If so, a more lightweight bag with a kickstand will be right up your alley.
  • Will you typically take a golf cart, but walk on the occasion? Still recommend a lightweight bag with a kickstand. If you buy a bulky, heavy bag, without a kickstand you might find your occasional walking reduces to never.
  • Do you need a number of pockets for storage?

Make your way over to our blog for some recommendations on brands, and styles.


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The tools you need

In order to make your way around the golf course, there are a few things that will undoubtedly make this an easier task.

  • Glove -- if you are righty, this will go on the left hand. If are a lefty, the glove will go on your right hand.
  • Tees
  • Towel -- to clean clubs; attaches to golf bag
  • Divot fixer -- when you hit the green, and the ball leaves an indent -- this help you fix that indent.
  • Balls -- an obvious one, but stock up enough so you don't run out!


Golf clothes can be tricky, especially given the perceived culture at country clubs, etc. In fact your choice of golf clothes can be the most intimidating part of preparing to play! Well, we are here to help you through that. The most important things to consider are, what is the weather? Where are you playing? Context is everything. The blogs we put together will help you navigate the scenarios.

  • Women - check out our blog post here on the various styles for various occasions.
  • Men - check out your gear here.
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Golf can has some unique scoring / naming, but we'll walk you through the terms below. Generally, the goal with golf is to get a tiny ball into a tiny hole, in the least amount of shots possible. Some holes take more shots, because they are longer and some less because they are shorter. Each golf  hole is given a "par" or expected number of shots to get the ball in the hole.

  • Par 5 - 400-600 yards
  • Par 4 - 300 - 450 yards
  • Par 3 - 100 - 230 yards

Your score will be judged relative to par or the expected number of shots to get the ball in the hole. So, lets use a Par 5 as an example. Below I will list the number of shots it takes to get the ball in the hole, and the name of the score in golf terms.

  • Par 5 -
    • 3 - Eagle - 2 under par
    • 4 - Birdie - 1 under par
    • 5 - Par - Even to par
    • 6 - Bogey - 1 over par
    • 7 - Double Bogey - 2 over par
    • 8 - Triple Bogey - 3 over par

the most important rules

  1. Fourteen clubs allowed in your bag
  2. Sand
    • Don't let your club touch the sand before hitting the ball
  3. Red Hazard: below are your options
    • Play from the hazard
    • Replay the shot from the original position. 1 stroke penalty.
    • Drop the ball behind where it crossed into the hazard. 1 stroke penalty.
    • Go to where the ball last crossed the hazard, and drop within 2 club-lengths. No closer to the hole. 1 stroke penalty.
  4. Yellow Hazard: below are your options
    • Play from the hazard
    • Replay from the original shot. 1 stroke penalty.
    • Draw a line from the hole to where the ball last crossed the line. Drop behind that point, and keep the point between you and the hole.
  5. Lost Ball or Out of Bounds (OB)
    • Go back to where the shot was originally played. 1 shot penalty.
  6. Unplayable Lie
    • Say your ball is in such a bad position that you can't make contact with it. You have a few options
      • Two club lengths, no closer to the hole. 1 stroke penalty.
      • Hit the ball from original position. 1 stroke penalty.
      • Bring the ball back as far as you want. Keep the point where the ball was between you and the hole.
  7. Removing Objects From the Bunker
    • Can only remove things that are 'foreign' to the area
      • Ex: soda can

the basics on etiquette

Golf has a number of unwritten rules, that if you break, you may make other people mad. These rules may seem petty at first. But, as you begin to play more they will start to make more sense. Do your best to approach this with an open mind. We know the etiquette thing can seem a bit over the top at first. Some are also just common sense.

Top Five "Don't Do" Golf Tips

  1. Don't chat in someone's back-swing.
  2. Don't hit into or close to people in front of you
  3. Don't drive a cart, roll a bag, place a bag on or too close to the putting green.
  4. Don't leave a divot without fixing it up.
  5. Don't be too slow. Golf can already take awhile.

Check out some more of our thoughts on etiquette over here!