How Many Clubs Can You Have In Your Golf Bag

Last updated: February 18, 2021

Is there a right number of golf clubs you can have in a bag?

We all know that golf is one of the most complicated sports in the world. It’s the tiniest of details that are so hard to grasp, and those end making a huge difference.

For instance, the handicap system is the cornerstone of golf; however, there are still many golfers who don’t fully understand the concept. 

Several other rules might confuse a beginner who is just starting to enjoy this wonderful sport. In this article, we’ll discuss arguably the most important golf accessory one can have, the club. Not many people know this, but there is a cap on the number of clubs you can carry in a golf bag.

Today, we’ll talk about everything there is to know about clubs and golf bags. We’ll answer some of the burning questions you might have. For example, we’ll let you know how many clubs can you have in your golf cart and why there is a cap on the number of clubs in the first place.

We’ll also take a look at some of the circumstances where you might be allowed to bring more clubs than you initially brought with you and so on. So, without further ado, let’s begin. 

How Many Clubs Can You Have in Your Golf Bag

It’s the time for the big reveal. The maximum number of clubs you can have in your golf bag is 14. You can choose to have fewer clubs than 14 if you like but you can never carry more than 14 clubs. 

Also, there’s no minimum number of clubs you must have. If you want to play a round with a single club or a couple of clubs, there’s no rule that will get in your way. Ideally, many golfers begin with 12 clubs and add a couple more to it if they require it later in the game.

Option to add Golf clubs in the bag

As we mentioned earlier, many players begin the round with less than 14 clubs, generally 12, and often add more if the need arises. However, the maximum number of clubs in your bag should not exceed 14 under any circumstance. In any case, you feel that you need more clubs than you initially thought, you can add more clubs to your bag after meeting certain conditions.

One of these conditions is that you must not cause any delay in the game and other players shouldn’t have to wait too because of you. Another condition is that the extra clubs should not come from any other player. 

What happens if you have more than 14 clubs in a Golf bag

Let’s consider the fact that during a game on one fine golf afternoons, you forget to check how many clubs you have in your bag. When you do, you find that you have brought more than 14 clubs to that game by mistake. Well, in this case, you will get a penalty for not following the rules.

What kind of penalty you ask, it depends on the type of play. Before 1968, the penalty for violating this rule was a disqualification, which we all agree was a little harsh.

However, now the penalties are relaxed but still serve their purpose. In any type of play, the first aspect of the penalty is to declare the extra club out of play. In match play, you will receive a deduction of one hole in your score for each you played with an extra club, for a maximum of two holes per round. Similarly, in stroke play, you’ll get a penalty of two strokes for each hole where the extra club was used, for a maximum of four strokes per hole. 

Why the limit to Golf clubs in the bag?

Many people wonder why there is a limit to the number of golf clubs a player can carry. They believe that having a large number of clubs does not improve a player’s chances of winning or prove that he or she is a better player.

However, this argument is not the most popular one. The true reason why there’s a limit is that it makes the game more challenging and competitive. Players have to make use of the limited equipment available and do their best to emerge victorious. 

Another reason is that it makes the golf bag or cart incredibly bulky and heavy. Carrying 14 clubs is a tiring task in itself, imagine how tiresome would be to carry more than 14. Also, this limit helps in keeping the costs down, as purchasing so many clubs can be an expensive affair. 

Besides, having fewer clubs motivates players to be more creative and use their best judgment. It is due to this limit that we have seen some of the most innovative and mesmerizing shots in the golfing world. 

What are the 14 clubs in a golf bag?

There is no official requirement for players to keep a stipulated amount and type of clubs in their golf bags. It’s entirely up to the player’s discretion to choose the number and the type of clubs in his golf bag. However, as we mentioned earlier, it is a generally accepted practice for golfers to start the game with 12 clubs and add more later on if they need it. 

Among these 12, the most commonly used configuration of clubs is to keep three woods (including a driver, 3-wood, and 5-wood), eight irons (3-9 iron and pitching wedge), and a putter. Most golfers prefer this assortment of clubs with slight variations. Also, the remaining two clubs are mostly different for every player. It depends on the playing style and personal preferences of the golfer. 

Can you use your playing partner’s golf clubs?

The rules are very strict when it comes to sharing golf equipment, including clubs with your fellow golfers. A player cannot use another player’s golf clubs in any circumstance, even if he or she is your partner. However, there’s an interesting twist to this rule. 

You and your partner can carry your clubs in the same golf bag but still, you won’t be allowed to share clubs. You must identify each other’s clubs beforehand and use only your clubs to make a stroke to add to your score.

In addition, you can ask your caddie to carry some of your clubs for you, but the total number of clubs you use should not exceed 14. You cannot carry 14 clubs in your golf bag and let your caddie carry a couple extra for you. If caught, you’ll be awarded the penalties mentioned above.  

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