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90-Degree Rule

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Definition: The "90-Degree Rule" is something golf courses put into place when they want to allow the convenience of golf carts but minimize the impact of those carts on the golf course.

When the 90-Degree Rule is in effect, golfers are required to keep carts on the cart path until they are even with a golf ball in the fairway. Only then should the cart leave the path, turning sharply (90 degrees) to drive straight across to the golf ball. After playing the shot, the cart should return straight back to the cart path, then remain on the path until pulling even with another ball. In this manner, golfers have the convenience of carts but damage to the course's fairway turf is minimized.

The 90-Degree Rule is permanenty in effect at many courses; at others, it will be put into effect following rains or when course conditions warrant. Look for signs near the first tee that might indicate whether the condition is in effect, or ask in the pro shop.

Even when the 90-Degree Rule is not in effect at a course, it's a good practice to follow because it helps maintain a healthier turf.

Return to Golf Glossary index

Alternate Spellings: Ninety-degree rule
Examples:
"The 90-degree rule is in effect today, so keep carts off the fairway until you reach your ball."
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