The Four Must-to-Follow Rules about Using GPS Gadgets in Golf Tournaments

Do you play golf a lot? For a passionate golf-lover, it is very important to locate the ball and distance of the hole properly. The new technological innovations have made it extremely easy for us. Now, you will get a chance to review the measuring factors with the latest tech products.

From the reviews of the golfers, you can find the best golf gps watch to buy from a thousand options. For example, Bushnell golf gps for the tournament is a great device. GPS devices for golf have become a popularly used gadget for the golfers. Today, we are going to know about the device as well as the rules relating to use the product legislated by the USGA. Along with the GPS devices, we have gathered information about Rangefinder devices.

If you go to a market, you will find a lot of categories of GPS and Rangefinder devices. Most of them are highly equipped with features. To improve the quality of a game and win the game without facing huge uncertainty, there is no alternative to these devices. The advantages of locating the target and get a proper measurement have been outstanding for the golfers of this age.

The functions have become really advantageous for both the part-timers and professional golfers. The technology can sometimes create a misperception about the legality. Taking this aspect into concern, a few rules have been added to the regulations of the USGA. Though some tournaments ban its uses, the contest and challenges remain the same as before. According to the regulations, we have described the legal uses of GPS and Rangefinder gadgets downward.

Using GPS Gadgets in Golf Tournaments

Rule 1: Using the GPS locating Device in Big Tournaments

The USGA, associated with R&A control the international golf regulations. Since 2006, a new rule of using the devices has come forward. It was included in a 14/3b paragraph. The major message of the rule is to allow rangefinder. But the national golf committee has the authority to ban it if necessary. The LOCAL RULES will be applicable if it is needed.

Depending on the player’s choice and quality of the golf clubs, the Local golf committees may ban the device or allow it on the field. After the first launch of this device in the UNITED STATES, most of the tournament committees are allowing it in the game.

Rule 2: Can you take the measurement?

The golf committee of the US has approved the application about using digital measurement tools in the year 2014. The Distance Measuring Device was not legally approved before the approval. Your handheld smartphone was also banned! But the rule allows using the apps for measuring distance as well. So, if you are out of the budget to buy a GPS locator, use the apps easily. It is totally legal in the tournaments. From the notice, the downward notification came forward to the golfers. It has been described in the 14-3 section.

“Distance measurement is allowed through the LOCAL RULE is in effect. But the rendering of other features may be prohibited by the local authority of Golf tournaments. The features, which can be used without this limitation are:

  1. Slope measurement by gauging
  2. Other features like the speed of wind or climate-news, direction measuring is limited.
  3. Any type of calculation or recommendation from the device that may affect the stroke of the golfer. The advanced features should be taken as the limited rules of the Local Committee.
  4. The effectiveness of any shot regarding the calculation of the slope or necessary conditions.

In such circumstances, two steps can be taken:

  • The advantageous features have to be disengaged and switched-off in some manners.”

Rule 3: Can the caddie advise you?

You may think yourself clever and equip the caddy with a GPS or laser rangefinder. Predicting this matter, a tournament committee can ban the device even for your caddie. When you are taking advice from the caddie, it will be a clear violation of the rules and regulation set by the USGA and R&A. This is why, know the local rules of the tournament and prepare your caddie respecting to the rules. If the device is banned, do not attempt to use it, either by yourself nor the caddie.

Rule 4: Is iPhone is allowed in the tournament for measuring?

No! You cannot take any multi-functional device on the golf field. It violates the condition of using other important shot-effecting features. For example, an iPhone is capable of slope measurement as well as wind direction gauging. Both of this information is essential for a golfer. Not only the iPhone but also a smartphone with these advanced functions can hamper the shot and provide extra benefit to the golfer. All you can do in a GPS Device-allowed tournament is to take the measurement of the distance.

On the website of the United States Golf Association, the rule has been written like:

“To bring every golfer in the same level, there should no use of multi-functioned devices. If a golfer uses anything with a better technological advantage, it will be considered as a violation of the rule. The rule will be violated, though the application or feature is not used.”

If you want to be a good golfer and play the tournament fairly, you must abide by the rules. For saving yourself from getting banned, the 14/3 is a must to abide rule. Checking and rechecking the rules about using the device before participating in a particular tournament is a mandatory recommendation.

You may have to follow the local golf rules which may be different from the actual USGA rule and R&A regulation. For creating a full-proof plan, the rules are really necessary for you. ( – Golf blogger)


The merit of these devices is really wonderful. Every cutting-edge technology adds a new feather to the history of the sports. The available devices like GPS locator and rangefinder gadgets are helping the upcoming golfers to play more brilliantly. The calculations and measurements are helping in taking more perfect decisions.

Before using any of these gadgets in the tournament, knowing the rules is seriously recommended. It will give you relief from the tension. You do not need to worry about the rule anymore.

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