Looking Over Your Shoulder When Golfing

Golf is meant to be relaxing, enjoyable and challenging all at the same time. Walking the links, I generally have a feeling of zen as I enjoy my surroundings. I always have a calm feeling of tranquility that leaves me wanting more at the end of each round.

Unfortunately, my ‘happy place’ is shattered sometimes and it is frustrating because, sometimes, there is just no reason for it. As a quick player, I rarely get caught when playing, but now and then it happens.

turkey on course

Hitting into the group in front of you makes you one of these!

I generally get caught by a pair in a cart or a single that is motoring around the course. If there is no one in front, we wait on the next tee and let them go through. This is the nature of golf sometimes and I understand the need to let the players continue on with their game.

However, these are not the times that cause my frustration. My challenge occurs when the group behind plays up only to see that the course is ‘backed up’ because there are groups ahead.

If this situation happens to me, I slow my game down and fill in time by focusing on course management or reading my putts just a bit longer. My intent is to slow down just a bit to maintain a two swing distance from the group in front. That way, I am not playing into their group and everyone can enjoy their round.

My challenge occurs when the group behind continues to hit up into our group. They never quite reach us, but their ball come to rest about 20 yards behind. They rush up to their ball, stand their, stare, and wait to hit. As soon as we hit the fringe of the green, they play up so we hear their ball land just behind us.

Now, technically they are not doing anything wrong, but I mean come on! Their actions cause me to continually look over my shoulder because I am worried that they might miss calculate and actually hit into our group. I am constantly looking over my shoulder and it takes me out of my game.

I realize that this is my challenge and something I need to work on, but golf etiquette suggests that the group behind should back off just a bit and give us our playing space. As I said before, it happens rarely, but when it does, it causes me grief.

Does this situation bother you? Does it happen to you?

I am a grateful golfer! See you on your links!


10 thoughts on “Looking Over Your Shoulder When Golfing

  1. Jim,

    This has happened to me and I’ve been on both ends. Sometimes it happens innocently from time to time but it does bother me when people do it on purpose. Especially when you’re waiting on the group ahead and the group behind may not realize you’re not the slow ones!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Josh

      You hit on a very good point, intent is everything. If a person is consciously plays close with the intent of influencing your play, that is a bad thing! Accidents do happen, what is next is very important. Thanks for bring that up.


      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve been the culprit and the victim. It doesn’t really bother me as long as there is a safe distance. I try to give groups ahead a little extra time if they are in a blind fairway. If I am hitting to a green, but know I can’t get within 40 yards I will play away. I understand your frustration.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jim, it’s happened on occasion. I will usually make small talk with the folks behind me when they catch us on a green or tee box, and talk about the pace of play in front and how nobody is really moving fast. That usually handles it and they back off. No need to get confrontational even though it’s irritating when they do it.



    Liked by 1 person

  4. Morning GG

    This is a rather large poet hate of mine along with the following .. ..

    I hate it when we are caught in a slow round with groups all around but the group behind is quicker and it reaches a point where we have been waiting to tee off and when we finally can the group behind have joined us at the tee box , i absolutely hate this, i find it rude and lack of respect , imo they should sit in their buggies or wait a safe distance from us and let us to continue to enjoy our day unhassled , i do find some rather rude.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Clint

      Point well taken. I find that they will show up the first time and most groups back off when the realize they are going nowhere fast. The first time is to see if they can go through, after that…..



  5. I hate to say it, but I’ve been guilty of that in the past as a single. But not anymore. My suggestion though is to call the front desk and complain rather than say something to them. They should take care of it diplomatically and save you any more worries so you can concentrate on your game.

    Liked by 1 person

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