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Caddy Training

TRAINING AGENDA FOR 2021
  
After applying for the caddy program, our Caddy Master (CM) Matt Haffner or Head Pro, Brandon Adair will send out notices to watch a short introductory video and timed quiz that must be completed w/in 24 hours. The quiz will test your basis knowledge of “How to be a Caddy”. If passing results are obtained you will receive a training date. Note you can only request one schedule change on the training date and outside research on “how to caddy” can be completed and is recommended.
  
New candidates will be required to attend three-2 hour on course training sessions. Sessions will be actual game situations with on-the-job training.
After each session, the member or staff will inform the caddy master if the candidates in his group showed the desire and willingness to be a good caddy. Those less then desirable will not advance to the next stage.
 
Next step will be to shadow an ‘A’ or Evans Scholar caddy for a minimum of 1 round of golf. Again, the mentor caddy is to inform the caddy master if his caddy is acceptable to advance to a rookie caddy.
  
All rookie caddies will be assigned to an Evans Scholar or ‘A’ caddy no less then every 10 days for an evaluation of his or her progress. If said caddies are not available a committee member will be used for your evaluation.
  
Caddy Master will seek out the members who had a rookie caddy and ask for input on their performance. If there is an issue it will be discussed w/said caddy. If the issue requires more training that caddy should be assigned to a caddy committee member to work on the issue.
 
Our Caddy Master will make occasional tours on the course to observe and do his/her own evaluations. Any issues will be discussed w/the caddies as a whole or individually.
 
Any attitude issues warrant dismissal.


Midlothian Country Club
Caddie Training Manual
 
Caddie Assignment Procedures
  1. Sign up your availability on ForeTees. Loops will be assigned by the Caddy Master.
  2. If you sign up as available for a given day, you must show up if you are assigned a loop. In the situation when a caddy cannot make a loop, he or she must email the caddy master and receive acknowledgement from the same.
 
Preparation for Work
  1. Know the weather forecast and DRESS ACCORDINGLY. You can always shed layers and place them in the golf bag but remember to retrieve the clothing at the end of the round.
  2. Use sunscreen. A minimum of SPF 15 is recommended. Most stores have small dispensers that you can carry in your pocket.
  3. Be rested and have a good breakfast.
  4. Caddies must be neat and clean in appearance. You are required to wear an approved MCC uniform that includes a white collared shirt, clean khaki pants or shorts, clean gym shoes, and MCC name badge (provided by Pro Shop), and a green MCC caddie bib (purchased from the Pro Shop). A baseball type of cap or a visor is also recommended. Shirts must be tucked in. Ripped, torn or cut-off clothing is not allowed.
  5. Be sure to bring a CLEAN white towel.
  6. Cell phones – Although it is understood that you may need a cell phone to contact someone to pick you up when you are ready to leave the course, cell phone usage is STRICTLY FORBIDDEN anywhere on the golf course! First violation will result in a 1-week suspension, second violation will be a demotion or release of duties.  
  7. Be sure to arrive at the bag room 30 minutes minimum prior to the time designated by the caddie master for your assigned loop.
 
Arrival at the Course
Transportation – caddies who are driven to the club must be dropped off ONLY in the area by the fence east of the Pro Shop. Caddies who drive their own vehicle must park in the lot to the east of the Pro Shop/cart storage area. Caddies who ride bicycles can lock their bicycle in the lot near the maintenance building.
  1. Upon arrival caddies MUST REPORT FIRST TO THE CADDY MASTER.
  2. On large event days, there may be a time posted that caddies must report.
 
 
 
At the 1st Tee When Carrying a Single Bag
  1. Supplies – Every caddie must have a CLEAN towel. It is also recommended that a portion of the towel be kept WET for the entirety of the round to keep clubs clean, and the golf ball cleaned while on the green. Other items recommended include a pencil, tees, ball markers, divot tool, sand mix and yellow birdie.
  2. Adjust the shoulder strap of the golf bag so that it hangs comfortably.
  3. Count the number of clubs in the bag. Fourteen clubs are the maximum allowed, so always inform your player if there are more or less than 14.
  4. Tee markers – identify the different tee positions for players (Blue, white, red, gold)
  5. All caddies should stand at the right side of the tee marker (except for hole #8 and #14 due to sightlines) starting at the marker and lining up to the back of the tee (NEVER in front of the marker).
  6. All caddies carrying bags MUST take a container of divot mix to be used throughout the round and fill as required at fill stations located on the course. Any divot found can be filled, not just your golfers.
  7. Learn the name of your player and how to properly pronounce the name. Always greet the player (Mr. or Mrs.) and introduce yourself with a firm handshake and eye contact.
  8. Ask your player what type and number golf ball they are playing. It is important to ALWAYS know the type and number golf ball your player is using. Inability to identify a golf ball can result in a penalty to the player.
  9. Ask your golfer if they would like their clubs in any order in the bag. If they do not have a preference, it is advisable to keep the driver, fairway woods and putter in the top 1/3, the hybrid clubs and 2-6 irons in the middle 1/3, and the 7-9 irons and all wedges in the bottom 1/3. The clubs should also be lined up in numerical order. Consistent placement of the clubs helps quickly confirm that all clubs are present and minimizes the chances of losing a club.
  10. Your player may have an electronic yardage device. Do not use this device unless instructed by the player to do so.
  11. Be as engaging to your player as your player is to you. Be friendly, courteous, and supportive.
 
On the Tee
  1. Line up all golf bags starting at the tee marker going back. Have the driver ready for the player (except for holes #2,8,12,15 – par three holes, and #14, 18 – short par fours where driver is not always indicated) – remove the driver from the bag and remove the headcover.
  2. It is important that all caddies remain quiet and as still as possible in order to reduce the distractions on the tee. In fact, it is imperative that caddies remain constantly aware of ALL players throughout the round so that they do not move or make sounds that provide distractions. Be cognizant of shadows.
  3. On par 3 holes, you should always have 3 pieces of information ready for the player: 1. Yardage (identify as yardage to the center of the green, or to the flag) 2. Location of the flag: Back (blue), center (white), or front (red), and 3. Wind direction.
  4. Be prepared to move when the ball is hit in case you need to get to a different angle to see the flight of the ball.
  5. Watch the COMPLETE flight of the ball and identify a stationery mark such as a tree, bunker, or other type of structure to use as a line to aid in locating a ball hit offline.
  6. All caddies should work as a TEAM. Each caddie is expected to help watch the flight of ALL golf balls and locate those that are difficult to find.
  7. Be prepared to leave the tee before your player. It is desirable to reach the ball before your player does. Do not ask your player for the club until they are ready to return it to you.
  8. Repair any divots on the teeing ground with the sand/seed mix located in the buckets on each tee. It is only necessary that 1 caddie remain to perform this task.
  9. Always replace the headcover on the club when the player returns the club to you – Damage to the clubhead or shaft can occur if left unprotected.
 
Fairway
  1. Walk in the direction of the line of flight. Using a stationery, permanent marker such as a tree or structure to help identify the line will narrow the search for a ball that flies in an area such as the rough or trees.
  2. Wait for your player to hand the club back to you after use – never ask them to hand you the club.
  3. When you receive the club, be sure to clean the clubhead of any dirt and/or grass with the wet portion of your towel. Also be sure the grooves are clean – debris in the grooves can affect the flight of the ball. Also be sure to replace the headcover immediately. The headcover (particularly for the driver) helps protect the head and shaft of the club from being damaged. (graphite shafts are more fragile than steel shafts, and the metal heads of the irons can cause dents in the clubfaces or shafts of other clubs. It should also be noted that you should never force a club into the golf bag – damage to the grips of the clubs could occur)
  4. While walking, if the clubs are hitting one another and creating noise, place your hand over the clubs to stop them from creating a distraction.
  5. Do not walk ahead of other golfers who may be preparing to hit for your own safety and in consideration of avoiding being a distraction to them, follow the lead of your golfer. If you accidentally find yourself ahead of a player ready to hit, quickly try to find something to stand behind for your protection and turn your body away from the shot.
  6. Try to arrive at your player’s golf ball before they arrive. Identify (but DO NOT TOUCH) the golf ball as your player’s by verifying the make and number in addition to any other specific marks your player may have used. Place the golf bag approximately 3 feet to the right of the golf ball (for a right-handed player) and hold the player’s bag upright so that they can see ALL the clubs.
  7. If you are a little behind your player (due to replacing divots, raking a bunker, etc.) it is not necessary to run to catch up. A quick pace to your walk is sufficient (be mindful of other players who may be preparing to hit) will usually get you there in time. Furthermore, most players understand when you are delayed in such instances.
  8. Be prepared with 4 important items: 1. Yardage (identify as yardage to the center of the green, or to the flag) 2. Location of the flag: Back (blue), center (white), or front (red), and 3. Wind direction. 4. Slope of the green.
  9. Every hole has several markers to identify the yardage to the middle of the green. There are sprinkler heads (round black disks approximately 8-10 inches in diameter) located on the left and right edge of every fairway and spaced approximately 27 yards apart. The yardage to the center of the green is stamped on the center of the disk. There are also red (100 yards), white (150 yards) and blue (200 yards) disks at the edge of every fairway.
  10. It is also helpful for caddies to know the yardage to significant items such as: yards to carry a specific bunker or water hazard, etc. The MCC yardage book is very helpful for this type of information, and you can add your own notes as you gain experience. You will find this useful when chasing for different caliber of golfers in the same group. You cannot be in four places at once, so being able to give yardages from landmarks to the center of the green is beneficial.
  11. After your player has chosen a club, pick up the bag and move a few paces back. Be sure you remain in a location where you can clearly see the flight and landing area of the shot. Also, be sure you are in a location where you can take cover if your player happens to mishit a shot that can ricochet off a nearby tree.
  12. After your player has chosen a club, it is helpful to be prepared to hand the player a putter immediately if their ball lands on the green. This will also allow the caddie time to complete several tasks before putting green responsibilities.
  13. If your player takes a divot, retrieve as much of the divot as possible, and replace it like a puzzle piece (in the same direction it was hit out, step on it firmly). Otherwise, use the DIVOT MIX to fill the hole up to the level of the grass.
  14. Caddy should be familiar with yardage markers and pick them up as they travel to the ball. Begin pacing off the yardage from the closest marker regardless of if you have a laser gun.
  15. If you walk past a ball that may have come from your foursome and it is not in a clearly visible area use the supplied birdie to mark its location. This will help keep pace of play.
 
Bunkers
  1. As with any other shot, try to arrive at the sand trap (bunker) before your player does. Place the golf bag down on the grass, and quickly retrieve a rake so that you are prepared to rake the sand as soon as the player has hit. Also, be sure that there are no other rakes lying in the direction your player intends to hit – you do not want them to hit a shot that is deflected by a misplaced rake!
  2. Stand outside the bunker at a point nearest the golf ball, but not nearer the hole, and hold your player’s bag upright so that a club can be chosen. If it is a greenside bunker, it is helpful to take the putter out of the bag in anticipation of the next shot.
  3. Once your player has hit their shot and exited the bunker, walk into the bunker in the same path (this will reduce the amount of sand that has to be raked) ***Pay attention to the other players in the group so that you DO NOT rake the sand while they are preparing to hit a shot. At times, you may have to wait until the players have completed the hole to rake a greenside bunker.
  4. When raking a bunker, you want to create as smooth and flat an area as possible. The best way to accomplish this is by pulling the sand towards you first and then pushing it to smooth the surface. The process should be like “pushing” yourself out of the bunker. You should also be sure to lift the rake out of the sand at the end of each movement to avoid “digging” into the sand – this creates unwanted “ditches”. It is also advised to PULL the sand towards you at the edges of the bunkers to provide a smooth transition between the sand and the grass.
  5. If there are 2 players in the same bunker it is not necessary for both caddies to rake – communication is the key – the caddies can decide who will rake, and who will attend to the players for the next shot until the caddie who rakes the bunker is able to catch up. This is an opportunity for the other caddie to carry both bags to the next location and provide other assistance such as ball washing, etc.
 
On the Green
  1. As the players and caddies approach the putting surface, it is important to know what each caddies’ responsibility is. As a rule, THE CADDIE FOR THE 1st BALL ON THE GREEN WILL TEND THE FLAG. Ask all players their preference for the flag being in and out and follow this for the remainder of the round)
  2. After they have handed their player a putter, all caddies should place the golf bag OFF THE GREEN in a location that is between the current putting green and the next tee. In some instances, there may not be sufficient time for a caddie to drop their bag before attending to the player’s needs on the green, that is, you may need to hold the golf bag on your shoulder while washing the golf ball or tending the flag, etc., until there is a break between player’s putting that you can place the bag down.
  3. NEVER SET A GOLF BAG DOWN ON THE PUTTING SURFACE!
  4. Once your player has marked the golf ball on the green, you should be nearby to receive the golf ball to be cleaned (be sure you have your towel, and that it has a clean wet and dry area to accomplish this). ALWAYS hand the golf ball to your player. Never toss or roll the ball – your player may incur a penalty!
  5. If it is your responsibility to tend the flag (your player was the first ball on the green) be sure to note the position of ALL the balls on the green – you DO NOT want to walk on the line (imaginary straight line between the golf ball and the hole) of ANY player.
  6. While tending the flag, note who is the furthest away from the hole. If the player’s golf ball is on the fringe or off the green and they intend to use their putter, you should ask if they want the flag in or out of the hole. If the player’s golf ball is on the green, you should ask if they would like you to “tend” the flag – this means standing astride the flag and holding it until the ball is struck. You remove the flag immediately after the ball is struck. It is also important to hold the flag against the pole so that it does not flutter in the wind.
  7. If the player strikes their putt from the putting surface, and you are “tending” the flag as it approaches the hole it is a good idea to remove the flag from the hole once when you get to the hole to be sure it does not bind and be ready to remove the flag as soon as the putt is struck. If their putt strikes the flagstick, they may incur a penalty. Once you pull the flag, step aside (preferably off the green, and again paying attention to the lines of all players) to a position that is not distracting to any player. Also be sure to hold the flag so that it does not flutter in the wind.
  8. If you are not the caddie who is to tend the flag, after you have cleaned your player’s golf ball, move to a position (preferably off the green) that is not in line with the position of any player and the hole. Additionally, you do not want to be in a position that is in the line of sight of a player putting – that is, an imaginary line drawn between the player’s golf ball and the hole. Ideally you should be in a position that is to the back of any player who is currently putting, and you should remain quiet and still. (Remember, if you can see the eyes of a player preparing to hit a shot, that player can see you)
  9. After all players have holed out, return the flagstick to the hole, being careful not to damage the edges of the hole.
  10. For more experienced caddies, as time permits, it is helpful to repair any ball marks on the green (ONLY FOR THOSE CADDIES WHO KNOW HOW TO PROPERLY REPAIR BALL MARKS ON THE GREEN!)
  11. Fix all the ball marks you can while on the green.
 
Fore Caddying
  1. On certain holes, it is helpful for ONE or 2 caddies in the group to move ahead to the designated location on the next hole while the players are putting out. This allows the caddie to be in a position where it is easier to see the landing spot of the tee shots on the next hole. Do not stand together, spread out along the fairway on both sides.
  2. The forecaddie should hand their player’s club to be used on the next tee to another caddie to be exchanged for the putter and head covers.
  3. It is important that caddies who decide to forecaddie are in a SAFE location, and they are prepared to watch the tee shots to avoid injury! Be mindful as there are other golfers on the course. Bags should be out of sight from the Tee box.
  4. While fore caddying, hand signals must be used. For example: The caddies on the tee should signal whether a ball is flying to the right, center or left. A forecaddie should signal a ball that lands in a bunker, in a water hazard, or out of bounds.
  5. The remaining caddies on the Tee box should be signaling the forecaddies the direction of the ball flight once struck to aide in location.
  6. Fill divots in the fairway and tee boxes as well as the greens.
 
Cart Chasers
  1. In some instances, you may be assigned to “chase” a cart. The responsibilities are similar to carrying a bag. It is your responsibility to maintain the golf clubs of 4 players, locate and identify golf balls for 4 players, etc.
  2. The rules for fairway shots, bunkers, and putting green responsibilities are the same as for bag carriers. The main difference is that a cart chaser will usually have to “run” alongside the cart between shots.
  3. Furthermore, cart chasers will forecaddie on more holes than bag carriers.
  4. During any slow up in play forecaddie is to clean the irons of his players.
 
At the End of the Round
  1. The golf bag should be brought to the bag room with all clubs accounted for and cleaned.
  2. Be sure to remove any clothing you may have stored in the golf bag.
  3. Remind the player of any items they may have stored in the golf bag.
  4. Complete the caddie fee card and hand it to your player with a pencil.
  5. Thank your player for the opportunity.
 
 
 
 
 
A Few General Rules
  1. Never swing a player’s golf clubs.
  2. Know all 14 clubs and which clubs have head covers.
  3. Never touch a golf ball in play (unless told to do so).
  4. Never offer advice unless asked.
  5. WATCH THE BALL – and work as a TEAM in finding any mishit ball.
  6. Never keep your golfer waiting for you.
  7. NEVER USE A CELL PHONE ON THE GOLF COURSE – this includes texting, etc.
  8. Be familiar with the rules of golf.
  9. ALWAYS thank your player at the completion of a round.
  10. If you are not sure, ask!
  11. Clean clubs on par 3’s.
  12. No riding on the back of the carts.
  13. Thank member for lunch at the turn.
 
We on the Caddy Committee feel it is a privilege to be a caddy as well as for us to have such a historic program. There are consequences for failure to follow these guidelines:
 
  • First Offense - Verbal warning.
  • Second Offense - Result in a series of afternoon loops or no loops
  • Third Warning - Calls for a dismissal.
 
These posted consequences are at the discretion of the Committee Chair and maybe be escalated based on the offense and repeat offenses.
 
When using the American flag, it must not touch the ground while out of the hole.
 
 
How to repair a divot or pitch mark correctly - Via the St Andrews blog
 
CADDY PROMOTION PROGRAMS
  less documentation can be provided to show previous ranking from another country club.
  1. 1 year of service caddy will graduate to a B or a committee caddy recommendation.
  2. Pass all items listed in the training agenda.
To progress to a B caddy the following must be confirmed.
  1. Continually showed up on time, with a neat and clean appearance for 1 full year or recommendation from a caddy committee member.
  2. Had no major complaints from members or staff.
  3. Showed the aptitude to advance his ability after every round.
  4. Able to carry a bag or Fore caddying w/no issues.
  5. Makes himself/herself available on a regular basis.
  6. Always maintain a neat and clean appearance.
Advance to an A caddy.
  1. All items listed under B are to have been maintained. 1 year of experience as a B caddy or recommendation.
  2. Shows the ability to help younger caddies.
  3. Can assist golfer with proper course management and can navigate the course via markers and landmarks.
  4. Shows exemplary attitude, proper hustle, and leadership qualities.
  5. Intermediate knowledge of the golf course. Including the ability to give correct yardages throughout the course from landmarks. Vocalizes the yardage, pin position and wind factors.
  6. Can handle a foursome as a forecaddie w/ease.
  7. Must maintain high elevation and caddy a minimum of 40 loops per year.
Criteria for an Honor caddy
  1. All items above are to be maintained. At least 2 full seasons experience and regularly have 40 loops per year.
  2. Consistently rated excellent on rating cards, show excellent attitude and demeanor, and set a leadership example for others.
  3. Must assist in training of new caddies including evaluations.
  4. Extensive knowledge of the course sufficient to assist a guest with course strategy.
  5. Advise of yardages to different parts of the green.
  6. Ability to read greens w/a high degree of competence.
  7. Assist in club selection based on all the above.
  8. Fair understanding of the rules of golf. (options on where to drop for water ball or out of bounce).
CADDY RANKING SYSTEM EFFECTIVE 2021
  
  1. A caddy will receive 2 points for every loop that receives a 5-star rating. 1 point for 4 stars. Any loop to obtain 2 stars or less will lose a point.
  2. Any caddy who on any given day goes out for 2 loops will receive an additional 1 point.
  3. Those caddies who go for a loop during excessive heat, cold and rainy days will receive an additional point.
  4. Caddies on call who show when required will receive an additional point.
  5. Senior caddies who help train or mentor other caddies’ weather during loops or after are eligible for an additional point.
  
Points will be recorded from April 1st thru 1 week before the caddy banquet. This goes for all days of the week.