Tips for Playing Golf in the Rain

Rain, rain, go away, let me use my Callaway. English weather certainly is temperamental – the conditions will separate the men from the boys and the bad from the worst. But the rain doesn’t always have to hinder our performance. Here at Golfsupport we’ve gathered the best tips for playing golf in the rain. But first, a look at how wet weather affects it.

How does rain affect the way you play golf?

how does rain affect the way you play golf?

Depending on the type of golf course, most will absorb rainwater, changing the texture and consistency of the ground beneath you. This means your hands on the grip of the golf clubs, and your shoes on the ground, are more likely to slip.

But more technically, wet weather conditions affect golf balls in that they can become plugged in the ground instead of rolling along the fairway/green as expected.

The dimples of a golf ball can also fill up with water, making clean contact with the ball harder and meaning the ball will slip on impact and the initial roll. And like a golf ball, water/mud/dirt fill the grooves of a golf club, compromising the amount of backspin, flight and distance that it produces.

Our tips for playing golf in the rain

Everyone hates squelching feet and slippery golf clubs. Perhaps worse, though, is the frustration from playing badly because of it. So here are our best tips for mastering the rain-sodden terrain on a golf course and still scoring great rounds.

1. Prepare for the worst (weather)

Spend some money on good waterproof clothing including jackets, trousers (with zipped-bottoms to pull over your spiked shoes), appropriate shoes, and hats/glasses for extra shielding while golfing in the rain. They’ll not only protect you but enable you to concentrate on delivering your best golf performance.

Also ensure your bags and trolleys are waterproof. If they aren’t, it’s worth investing in bag covers or new bags altogether to protect expensive clubs, clothing and equipment.

prepare for the worst weather when playing golf in the rain
(Copyright Roger Dale Pleis/

2. Keep everything dry

Traction is a big issue when playing golf in bad weather. Wet club grips,balls, and sodden ground can compromise your game, with the ever-looming risk of slipping and completely bottling it.

To avoid this, keep your clubs and golf balls, dry – some courses will even allow you to pick up, clean and replace the ball again between shots. Or failing this, it’s worth investing in winter golf gloves to ensure a tight grip.

3. Bring extras

Your towels, gloves and hats are going to get wet when playing golf in the rain. It’s inevitable. It’s therefore wise to bring spare accessories with you. A neat trick, like many PGA professionals, is to hang your towels under your umbrella for safe-keeping.

Not only this, but disadvantages caused by the weather means you’ll need to bring a larger selection of the fundamentals to your golfing game, such as different types of golf clubs, number of golf balls, spare spikes for your shoes, and more. Now you will be fully equipped to tackle the storm!

4. Adapt your play of style

In bad weather, you may need to make some alterations to how you would usually play. Here are our tips for playing golf in the rain:

  1. Use woods instead of irons for more shots – irons are notoriously hard to stroke with accuracy/consistency, even more so in slippery conditions.
  2. Hit harder in the rough, as wet grass will cling to the club more and the slow the clubhead down. In fact, wet ground makes the ball run slower in general.
  3. Grip further down on a club (about as much as you feel like you’re sinking) to promote solid contact on wet ground – when the ground is wet, you can sink whilst trying to take your shot and affect the way you play golf in wet weather.
  4. Try to get the ball as close to the pins as possible when making approach shots, and fixing ball marks on the greens.
  5. Be careful not to over hit a ball out of sand –it will come out faster and further in wet sand.

prepare for a worse score when playing golf in the rain
(Copyright Robert J. Beyers II/

5. Prepare for the worst (score)

As hard as you try to combat the difficult situation you’ve found yourself in, it’s almost inevitable that your score will be worse when playing golf in the rain. In this situation, however, it’s important not to feel disheartened.  Anyone else you’re playing with will be in the same boat as you, and it’s not going to help by getting annoyed. All you have to do is try to stay focused and do the best you can. You might even enjoy it!

(Feature Image: Copyright CC0 Public Domain; Top left Image: Copyright Mitch Gunn/