PGA of America to allow distance-measuring devices at upcoming Majors

(Photo by Julian Herbert/Getty Images)

The PGA of America will allow the use of distance-measuring devices at its three annual Major Championships, starting with the US PGA Championship at Kiawah Island from May 17-23.

The USA PGA Championship is the first of three Majors administered by the PGA of America, with the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship and KPMG Women’s PGA Championship also allowing the use of such distance-measuring devices.

“We’re always interested in methods that may help improve the flow of play during our Championships,” said Jim Richerson, President of the PGA of America. “The use of distance-measuring devices is already common within the game and is now a part of the Rules of Golf. Players and caddies have long used them during practice rounds to gather relevant yardages.”


The devices used by players and/or caddies in PGA of America Championships will need to conform to the Rules of Golf (Rule 4.3a (1)) regarding their use and performance:

  • Allowed: Getting information on distance or direction (such as from a distance-measuring device or compass).
  • Not Allowed: Measuring elevation changes, or interpreting distance or directional information (such as using a device to get a recommended line of play or club selection based on the location of the player’s ball).


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4 responses to “PGA of America to allow distance-measuring devices at upcoming Majors”

  1. Roger Coleman avatar
    Roger Coleman

    Distance measuring equipment should be allowed in all professional tournaments – it will simply speed up the pace of play which is badly needed.

    Also use of green books should be banned once on the green, they simply slow things down. Bring back the skill of reading a green naturally.

    Another way of speeding up play is to ban applying lines on balls for lining up purposes on the green. This is now a major cause of slow play & has now got out of hand.

    1. Harry Smyth avatar
      Harry Smyth

      Very well put – agree fully on every point.

  2. Christy Mcguirk avatar
    Christy Mcguirk

    Oh God the Americans are at it again they are hell bent on taking all the skill out of professional golf,and if they think scopes are going to speed up the game it’s not,,if their going to start using them like I see a lot of amateurs doing scoping from inside a hundred metres,,gimme a break,,,its going to slow it down more,,they next thing will be using electric trolleys so they can sack the caddies and save more money,,greed rules in the game now,instruct the players to speed up by putting time limits on each shot as they do now but it’s not short enough,,do these players not realise its them that puts people off playing our beautiful game and their slow play is filtering down to the ordinary player,if I was a caddy on tour I’d be very worried about my future,,dont let this crap into the European domain,,,

  3. Liam Williamson avatar
    Liam Williamson

    I think this is a great idea. Also players on the clock with one minute for first player and 45 seconds for the next until all the three or four ball have played. Authorities have to show their teeth and impose penalties both at professional and amateur status. To much of the old boys brigade in clubs and rules officials. It`s a joke to ask established three or four ball groups to police themselves. Two many people think the `spirit of golf` means giving your mate a two foot putt. New members should also have to attend a basic rules and etiquette night before being given their handicap and start playing competitions.

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