What Is the Fairway on a Golf Course?

Golfers often talk about the fairway as if it is a place they are trying to get to on the golf course. But what is the fairway? And why is it important?

In this blog post, we will answer those questions and explain why the fairway is so important in golf.

We will also talk about some of the best ways to hit the ball onto the fairway so you can make your way to the green.

So if you’re curious about what the fairway is, read on! We’ll clear things up for you.

Fairway Definition

In golf, a Fairway is an area between the teeing ground and the green. Fairways are typically mowed grass areas of different lengths depending on the course. 

Fairway distance is typically measured in yards and can vary from around 30 yards to nearly 50 yards depending on the type of hole (par 4 or 5). The most important aspect of fairway play is accuracy.

Fairway shots require players to accurately hit their ball off of the fairway turf towards their target. This requires precision shot-making that relies heavily on club selection, ball striking ability, and putting skills. 

Weathering conditions such as wind and rain can often cause a player’s ball to roll or bounce away from its original landing spot, making Fairway play even more difficult. 

Fairways also provide a much easier surface for the player to strike their ball on compared to roughs or sand traps, thus making Fairway shots important in the overall outcome of a round. 

Having good Fairway play can help golfers save strokes and build confidence in their game. Therefore, mastering Fairway shots is an essential part of any golfer’s skill set.  

Fairway in the Rules of Golf

Despite the Fairway being an important part of golf, it is barely mentioned in the Rules of Golf. 

Fairway play is only briefly discussed in Rule 13, which states that golfers must not “make a stroke from any area other than the teeing ground or Fairway”.

Fairways are not included in the rules of golf simply because they do not alter the way a player is to play their shots, and thus do not need to be mentioned. 

Fairway areas are generally left up to the discretion of course designers and maintenance personnel, so there is no need for specific rules related to them. 

Some courses may include water hazards, bunkers, or other obstacles within the fairways, but these will be addressed in the individual course’s rules. 

The Meaning of ‘Closely Mown’ Fairway

The Fairway is often referred to as ‘closely mown’. This means that the Fairway grass has been cut very short and is usually not more than an inch or two in length.

This helps golfers be more accurate with their shots since there is less friction between the ball and the Fairway surface resulting in less spin on the ball. Closely mown Fairways are also less likely to have uneven surfaces and divots, making for a more consistent playing experience. 

What is the Difference Between Fairway and Green?

The Fairway and green are both important areas on the golf course, but they have different functions.

Fairways allow players to set up for their shots toward the green while greens provide the area where players put.

Fairways typically feature grass that is cut shorter than other sections of the course, making it easier to place the ball onto the Fairway during a shot. Greens are usually flat and feature very short grass so that it is easier to read the break of the putting surface.

Fairways can also have obstacles like bunkers or water hazards, while greens typically do not. Fairways are essential for setting up shots toward the green, so mastering Fairway play can help golfers lower their scores. 

What Does it Mean to Hit the Fairway?

What Is the Fairway on a Golf Course?

When a golfer hits the fairway, it means they have successfully landed their shot on the closely mown grass section of the course that lies between the tee box and green.

This requires good ball striking and accuracy in order to reach the target area. Hitting fairways is an important skill for golfers since it gives them the opportunity to set up for their next shot and avoid rough or bunkers that might cost them strokes. 

On a par-4 or par-5 hole, hitting the Fairway can often be the difference between getting on in regulation or having to hit from the rough. Therefore, fairway play is an essential part of any good golfer’s game. 

Final Thoughts

Fairways are an important part of any golf course and are essential for setting up shots toward the green. They should be mown closely to reduce friction between the ball and surface, which helps golfers hit more accurate shots.

The Rules of Golf do not mention Fairway play specifically, but they do state that players must hit from the teeing ground or Fairway. Hitting fairways can help golfers save strokes and build confidence in their game, making it an essential part of any golfer’s skill set. 

By mastering Fairway play, golfers will be able to lower their scores and improve their overall game.      

Having good Fairway play can help golfers save strokes and build confidence in their game. Therefore, mastering Fairway shots is an essential part of any golfer’s skill set.

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