Together The R&A and the USGA govern the sport of golf worldwide, operating in separate jurisdictions but sharing a commitment to a single code for the Rules of Golf, Rules of Amateur Status and Equipment Standards. The R&A governs worldwide, outside of the United States and Mexico, with the consent of 152 organisations from amateur and professional golf and on behalf of over 30 million golfers in 138 countries.
The Rules of Golf have developed over a period of more than 250 years and are written and revised by The R&A and the United States Golf Association. Since 1952, The R&A and USGA have worked closely to produce a joint code of Rules so that, wherever golf is played around the world, the same laws apply.
They don't only cover the playing Rules but Etiquette and the specifications and regulations that relate to clubs and balls as well.
The Rules of Amateur Status establish the framework under which amateur golf is played. The purpose of the Rules of Amateur Status is to maintain the distinction between amateur and professional golf and, particularly given that amateur golf is largely self-regulating with regard to the Rules of play and handicapping, to focus on the sport’s challenges and inherent rewards, rather than financial gain.
The Rules of Amateur Status cover matters such as amateurism and professionalism, prizes and prize limits, expenses, instruction and advertising.
A selection of apps and publications, including the Rules of Golf and A Quick Guide to the Rules of Golf, are available to download on the Downloads and Free Publications page.