Golf Beginner's Guide

So You Want To Play Golf

Golf Beginner's Guide: So You Want To Play Golf
We get it. Golf can seem terribly complicated to the uninitiated. So many rules, so many different kinds of clubs. And then there's the lingo: birdies, bogeys, bump-and-runs. At Golf Digest, this may be the language we speak every day, but we also know it's a language that can scare prospective golfers off before they ever pick up a club.

That's where this online beginner's guide comes in. To those who know nothing about golf, our goal is to shepherd you through this uncertainty. What kind of clubs do you need? How do you practice? When do you know that you're ready for the golf course? The way we see it, the only dumb questions about getting started in golf are the ones you're afraid to ask, or worse, the ones for which you can't find an answer. The whole point of this guide is to make sure that last part is no longer a problem.
-- Sam Weinman
Part 1: What You Need To Know About Clubs
Part 1

What you need to know about clubs

No doubt, the right equipment always helps, but it's not as if you'll need to empty your savings account to get started. Here we help with finding the equipment that will allow you to develop your imperfect skills with minimal expense.
Learning To Play
Part 2

Learning To Play

The hardest part about golf can be getting started. Where do you go for a lesson? What do you do on the driving range? How do you practice your short game? We offer some guidance on learning to play.
Basic Shots You Should Know
Part 3

Basic Shots You Should Know

There are parts of golf that will elude you your entire life, but certain fundamentals are essential. From driving to chipping, you need some basic tips to help you build your foundation.
When you're ready for the golf course
Part 4

When You're Ready For The Golf Course

So now that you've got some clubs and you've learned the basics of the golf swing, you're thinking about testing yourself on an actual golf course. Here's how to make your first experiences on the course positive ones.
Part 5


Congratulations! You've been invited out for a round of golf by a friend or a family member or (gulp) maybe even your boss. You're excited, but you're also petrified you might embarrass yourself because you're not quite sure of the protocol either on or off the course. All you need is some basic lessons in golf etiquette and you'll be good to go.
Those Pesky Rules
Part 6

Those Pesky Rules

Don't worry. Most golfers, including those guys who turned their noses up at playing with a newcomer like you, have very little knowledge of how to play the game correctly. Just remember these key points and you'll do fine for now.
Getting in golf shape
Part 7

Getting In Golf Shape

If you want to play well, and play this game for the rest of your life, you have to exercise and pay specific attention to the muscles that will allow you to do it. Start with these areas and you'll be in great "golf shape" in no time.
Part 8: What To Wear
Part 8

What To Wear

Learning how to play may be the most important part of becoming a golfer, but not to be overlooked is knowing what to wear. We provide five pointers to make sure you're outfitted right for the course.
Beginner's Golf Guide: Outings
Part 9


Play this game long enough and you're going to end up in something other than a casual round with your buddies. It might be a charity outing. It might be a member-guest. Regardless, it's a whole new world when your score can actually matter. Here's what you need to know.
golf rules
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