Skip to main content

Learn to use a weather delay to your advantage

Weather sign from the 2013 Shell Houston Open final round
Getty Images

The PGA Tour has been plagued with bad weather in the final round of the last two events, most recently at the Shell Houston Open.

D.A. Points was the last man standing on the 72nd hole Sunday, finishing his round with pars after a lengthy weather delay.

Whether it’s the PGA Tour, a member-guest, or your club championship, if you’re a competitive golfer, dealing with inclement weather can be an advantage or disadvantage depending on your ability to handle it.

So what are some good thoughts to have the next time you must deal with bad weather?

• Be aware of the changing ground conditions. A firm, dry course will be no more after heavy rains like we saw in Houston and Orlando. Softer greens mean you can go after pins more aggressively, but it requires you to alter club selection by choosing more club to get more carry.

• If given an opportunity, get your body warmed up again by visiting the driving range. If not, make sure you hit a few chips and roll a few putts around the practice green. The speed of the greens will almost certainly be slower. At the very least you need to take a few minutes to recalibrate your stroke to adjust for the different speed of the greens.

• Prepare your mind during the delay. Weather delays can be pretty boring. While you wait, visualize your remaining holes. Identify what you have done well so far in the round and use it to your advantage to finish strong.

• Know the rules! Rain means casual water which is defined as an “Abnormal Ground Condition” in the rules of golf. Know how to proceed under Rule 25 to avoid making a mistake and costing you unnecessary penalty strokes.

Take an online lesson from Tyrus York.