How to take relief from cart path

Welcome back, everyone. Just like the Rocky movies, we’re back again with another edition of the Nextgengolf Rule of the Week. This week, we will examine how to take relief from immovable obstructions, specifically cart paths, under Rule 24-2b.

Unless you’re like the pros and get free clubs whenever you want, you probably don’t want to play your ball off of the cart path or be standing on the cart path. Luckily, the Rules of Golf provide relief from artificial obstructions, which include cart paths. You are entitled to relief from the cart path if it impacts your stance, swing, or the lie of your ball.

Here's a quick explanation of how exactly to take relief from the cart path.

1) Determine your nearest point of relief

To determine your nearest point of relief, find the point closest to the hole where the cart path no longer interferes with your stance, swing, or lie of the ball. The nearest point of relief can be to the right, left, or behind the cart path but cannot be closer to the hole than the ball’s original position.

2) Drop the ball within one club length of nearest point of relief

Once you find your nearest point or relief, mark the spot with a tee. Then mark off one club length, no closer to the hole. Drop the ball from shoulder height within the one club length. After that, the player is free to play on like normal.

As with any time a player takes relief, inform the other members of your group about what you’re doing and allow them to observe the proceedings. For more details, check out the USGA's explanation of how to take cart path relief.

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