GOLF RULES / The new drop rule has been labelled “absurd”

The new rules of golf say you must drop the golf ball from knee height, but it does look a little absurd.

When the R&A and USGA announced the changes to the rules of golf, we must admit we didn’t really think that this one would be an issue.

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When taking a drop, you now have to drop the ball from knee height rather than shoulder height. It was put in place to try to speed up the game as there is less chance the ball will bounce away from your intended drop area.

But it really wasn’t a problem before and doesn’t seem like it will improve the pace of play much at all.

There are suggestions from golf commentators that this rule change may quickly be looked at given the publicity it received during the first PGA Tour event of the year, Sentry Tournament of Champions. Particularly from Bryson Dechambeau.

DeChambeau has labelled the rule change absurd and appeared to look as absurd as possible while taking a drop during the tournament.

Golf Digest reported DeChambeau’s dismay at the rule and suggested it should just be dropped from anywhere between shoulder and knee height – which seems reasonable to me.

“I think the knee drop one (intrigues me most). That you have to drop it from knee height is a bit absurd, unfortunately.” Dechambeau said.

“I think that you should be able to go from knee height to shoulder height. There should be no issue with that, whatever you want to do, honestly.”

Bill Speros and Jason Lusk also reported Rory McIlroy’s comment that hinted that the rule change could give the shorter players advantage, albeit a small one.

“(With dropping from knee height), we’re saying that Brian Harman has got a big advantage, he can basically place it. Where you got someone like Tony Finau who is dropping it probably from like waist high for me. But I think that they’re trying to simplify the rules which I think is a great thing for the game,” McIlroy said. “I’m happy that they made the decision to try and simplify them and just try to make everything a little bit easier to understand.”

Here is the USGA video reminding us of the new correct procedure when dropping the rule. It must be played from within the drop zone.

2 thoughts on “GOLF RULES / The new drop rule has been labelled “absurd”

  • I think you should be able to drop the ball anywhere between knee and shoulders. Some older players find it difficult to bend down.
    I’m happy to leave flag in (I have practiced that way for over a year) but other golfers are reluctant to do so and that means extra time to put the flag back in when others want the flag out because that’s what they are used to.

  • Easy fix amend the rule to read that you can drop from either your choice.


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