R&A and USGA announce new local rule to limit club length

Rules Of Golf

The R&A and the USGA have announced the introduction of a new Model Local Rule (MLR G-10) to provide those running professional or elite amateur golf competitions with the option of limiting the maximum length of a golf club to 46 inches. 

The rule will come into effect from January 1, 2022, and will exclude putters.

The proposal was first announced in February 2021, which opened a notice-and-comment period to allow the industry the opportunity to provide feedback as part of the equipment rule-making procedures.

The comments received from the golf industry, including players, professional tours and equipment manufacturers, were carefully considered before the decision to proceed with the new MLR was reached.

• PGA Tour creates yet ANOTHER incentive scheme

• New pics show Tiger back on the golf course

The R&A and the USGA issued an Area of Interest notice in 2014 indicating that research was being conducted into the impact of club lengths of more than 48 inches on hitting distance and whether that limit remained appropriate.

A proposed change to the limit was subsequently put forward in 2016 but was put on hold in 2017 when the Distance Insights project got underway.

Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, said: “We have taken time to consult fully with the golf industry, including players, the main professional tours and equipment manufacturers, and have considered their feedback carefully. We believe this is the right thing for the game at this time and it will provide tournament organisers with the flexibility to choose for themselves within the framework of the Rules.

“We are working hard to maintain an open, collaborative and considered dialogue with these key stakeholders as we continue to evolve the Equipment Standards Rules to ensure they reflect the modern game.”

• Caddie dies during PGA Tour Latinoamerica event

• Harrington admits to "ball issues" at Ryder Cup

Mike Whan, the CEO of the USGA, added: “We’ve worked closely with our industry partners to ensure the future for golf remains strong. Admittedly, this is not the ‘answer’ to the overall distance debate/issue but rather a simple option for competitive events. It’s important to note that it is not a ‘Rule of Golf,’ and as such, it is not mandated for the average, recreational golfer. Rather, this is an available tool for those running competitive events.”

The proposals submitted in February for changes to the testing method for golf balls and to testing for tolerance of the spring-like effect are still under consideration. The governing bodies plan to consider feedback on these proposals in line with the responses to the broader Area of Interest – Research Topics notification, which are due by November 2.

Share this Article

share-logo
twitter-logo facebook-logo

Latest Videos See all videos right arrow

play button
THE SIMPLE WAY TO FLUSH YOUR IRONS | with Ewen Ferguson
Ewen Ferguson
play button
DO THE TAYLORMADE P790 IRONS LIVE UP TO THE HYPE?
TaylorMade
play button
I TAKE ON THE BEST AMATEUR GOLFER IN SCOTLAND
angus carrick
play button
WHO WOULD USE THIS GOLF CLUB? | TaylorMade 300 Mini Driver review
TaylorMade
See all videos right arrow

Golf News

Former PGA Tour pro has leg amputated
PXG boss offers staff cash bonus to get COVID vaccine
Women's golf is "neglected" says Gary Player
Dustin Johnson: I want to be US Ryder Cup captain
“I can’t keep playing the way I am” - Jason Day opens up on struggles

Other Top Stories

Tiger Woods: Inside his $41million Florida mansion
The very best pubs in St Andrews
The Scottish Golf Course Emoji Quiz!
24 lies every bad golfer tells
Doug Sanders: The extraordinary life of golf's original playboy

Quick Fault 'n' Fixes See all videos right arrow

play button
Increase the speed of your hands for more distance
Watch
play button
Maintaining a strong dynamic loft at impact
Watch
play button
Keep the arms connected to the body
Watch
play button
Maintaining your spine angle
Watch
See all videos right arrow