Rules of golf: More on the water golf shot

I’ve been doing too much thinking about playing golf shots from the water lately. 
I wondered what would happen if the ball moves as you take your stance. Say you remove your shoes, enter the shallows and the ripples you create moves your golf ball?

I asked rules guru Barry Rhodes from none other than the Rules of Golf at www.barryrhodes.com for an answer and he directed me towards a the decisions section of the rules of golf.
Decision 14-6/1 is relevant to your question;

Q. A ball was at rest in shallow, rapidly-running water in a water hazard. After the player had carefully entered the water, walked to the ball and addressed it, the ball moved, presumably due to the current. What is the ruling? 

A. There is no penalty. The player may play the ball from its new position or, under penalty of one stroke, take relief under Rule 26-1. Rule 14-6 overrides Rule 18-2b (Ball Moving After Address) in such a case. 

When a ball is in water and it is not clear whether the player’s actions caused the ball to move, he should be given the benefit of the doubt and no penalty should be applied. However, if the player’s actions clearly caused the ball to move, he would be subject to a penalty stroke under Rule 18-2a and required to replace the ball. For example, if a player were to jump into the water close to the ball and in so doing create a splash that moved the ball, he would be subject to penalty under Rule 18-2a.

Now we know, so be careful when entering the water. If it’s obviously you who was the direct cause of the ball moving, it is a penalty stroke and must be replaced.
May you never be in the position in the first place.

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