Top Links:

Get A Golf Handicap

UK Golf Guide

Golfshake Top 100s

Find Golf Travel Deals

Golf Competitions


Community Forum


Tee Times | Search | Reviews


Gear | Tour | Industry Insider


Video Library | Tuition Sections


Join | Log In | Help | Useful Links


The Things That Will Ruin Your Round of Golf

By: | Fri 24 May 2024

Every time we step on to the first tee we live in hope that this is going to be the dream round, the day when everything goes right, that we find the middle of every fairway, rifle irons to the heart of greens and see holes like buckets.

Well, that’s the theory at least. Sadly, the reality can often be very different. But we all keep coming back.

So what are the things that can ruin your round of golf?

The Weather

We have just come off the back of the wettest winter and early spring on record. Day after day the rain has hammered down. You spend the entire week looking forward to getting out on the course but when the alarm goes off you gingerly head towards the curtains, pull them back and your heart sinks because it is pouring. To make matters worse, it is also blowing a gale. Your phone then pings. It’s one of your playing partners telling you that he is crying off.

Almost worse than being rained off is the round of golf where you have checked your weather app and it has told you that the weather is going to be fine. You get to the sixth hole and have become aware of ominous black clouds overhead. And then…boom! The heavens open. You pull your phone from your back pocket, check that weather app again and it tells you that the rain that wasn’t meant to fall at all will end in five hours. You have started with five straight pars and have hit your approach at the sixth to three feet. But you know it is only a matter of time before somebody in your group says he has had enough and wants to head home. 

Lack of Preparation

Why oh why is it that so many of us expect to be able to turn up, stride on to the opening tee and play like a god without first hitting a few shots to warm up? My argument is that if you can consistently time things so that you turn up at the course 10 minutes before your tee time then surely it is just as easy to get there 40 minutes early and be able to head to the range or practice ground and hit a few shots to loosen up. There is not a tour professional anywhere in the world who will start a round of golf without first warming up. If you want to guarantee a ruined round, take your clubs from the boot of your car, put on your shoes, walk to the tee, have a few swings and then hit the ball.

Opening Drive

Your opening drive can set the tone for the entire round, especially if you look up and see out of bounds on the right, water on the left and a huge bunker slap-bang in the middle of the fairway. Find the water or bunker or hit your first shot out of bounds and you know that you are going to run up a serious number. Your round is ruined before you have walked off the first green.


It is one of those days when you are striking the ball beautifully, finding fairways and greens on a regular basis. But you miss a short putt on the second and it turns out to set the tone for the rest of your round. The likes of Scottie Scheffler average around 27 or 28 putts per round. By the time you reach the 12th you have already taken 28 putts. And why is that? You are prepared to spend £500 on a driver you use maybe 14 times in a round but the putter in your bag came from the bargain bin. Oh, and you don’t really practice your putting. Poor putting is absolutely guaranteed to ruin your round.

Course Conditions

You can be playing out of your skin but if the course is in poor condition your round is going to be ruined. You know what I am talking about - poor fairways with patchy grass growth, bumpy greens, bunkers with little or no sand. You could just about stomach it were it not for the fact that you have been charged £100 to endure these conditions.

Golfer in Trees

(Image Credit: Kevin Diss Photography)

Breaking Bad

Your ball has landed close to a tree but the lie is decent and you are sure that you can manufacture some kind of a shot and perhaps even salvage a par - a bogey at worst. You take several practice swings, taking extreme care to restrict your follow-through to avoid the tree trunk. But then you hit the ball and forget to stop your swing and end up wrapping the shaft around said tree trunk. Oh, and you shank the ball into the trees on the other side of the fairway.

Lost Ball

You are ambling along, scoring pretty well and enjoying some rare warm sunshine. And then, from nowhere comes either a wicked duck hook into knee-high rough or a wild slice that disappears into the trees. And off you go in search of the ball - a brand new Titleist Pro-V1 you have literally just hit for the first time - knowing full well that you will never see it again. Of course it is lost. And of course it has ruined your round.

Bad Bounce

They call it the rub of the green. But one thing that is absolutely guaranteed to ruin your day is the bad bounce. We have all experienced it. You hit a perfect tee shot, bend down to pick up your tee and somebody in your group says: "Oh, bad luck there Derek." Whaaaat? As your ball has landed it has taken a wicked kick to the left and a) finished up behind a tree, or b) ended up out of bounds. Even worse than that is when you split the fairway, walk up to your ball and find it resting in a divot hole. Not just any divot hole but a massive crater.

Playing Partners

The people you play with can often make or break a round of golf. Obviously, we all try to play with friends, with people we like and have plenty in common with. But sometimes they do or say things that ruin our rounds. How many times can you listen to somebody saying: "Bad luck"? How much advice do you need from a 24-handicapper? And is Algernon aware of the fact that when everybody else stands over the ball he constantly rattles the change in his pocket? And why does he have change in his pocket? He is the only person you know who still carries coins.

Related Content

Things That You Probably Do Wrong On The Golf Course

Fundamentals That Every Golfer Needs to Get Right

7 Mistakes That Every Golfer Makes

The Worst Golf Shots You Can Possibly Hit

8 Ways to Ruin Your Scorecard

What do you think? post your thoughts and feedback on the Golfshake Forum: https://forum.golfshake.com/

Tags: GOLFERS Golf daily picks

Scroll to top