Ask the Rules Guy: Double (hit) trouble

Ask the Rules Guy

What is the penalty for when you are in a bunker, and after hitting the ball, you hit it a second time with your club on the follow-through?
-- Duane F. Pruett, via

While playing from a hazard can definitely make you second-guess your instincts on this double shot, the ruling is actually pretty straightforward. Rule 14-4 clearly states that in this circumstance, "the player must count the stroke and add a penalty stroke, making two strokes in all." The good news for you is that there is no additional penalty for being in any particular spot (be it the tee box, green, or in your case a bunker), so you should have simply counted the two strokes and played your ball where it came to rest after your double hit. But look on the bright side -- lots of amateurs take two shots to get out of a bunker.

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