grass ceiling
n. A set of social, cultural, and discriminatory barriers that prevent or discourage women from using golf to conduct business.

Example Citations:
Of about 135 private golf clubs in New Jersey, Mrs. Goodson estimates that only a handful have no restrictions on their women members. Most, she said, prevent women from playing during the most popular golfing hours such as weekend mornings.

Many clubs also have men-only dining rooms and prevent women from voting on club rules. And, when a couple divorces, or a male member dies, the club often orders the woman to clean out her locker, Mrs. Goodson said.

The women say the restrictions hurt their efforts to be equals in the business world. For example, while men can invite their business clients to play golf at almost any time, women cannot — a practice that has created "a grass ceiling" of sorts.

"Women have to be allowed to network," Mrs. Goodson said, "and a golf course is big business."
—Melody Peterson, "Lobbying for Equal Rights on the 18th Hole and Beyond," The New York Times, July 20, 1997

But the clinic was also designed to teach women the importance of using golf to gain a competitive edge on the way up the corporate ladder, said Jane Blalock, a professional golfer....Golf has been a male-dominated sport, but women are starting to break through the grass ceiling, Blalock said.
—"Golf swings may shatter grass ceiling," Asbury Park Press, June 21, 1998

Earliest Citation:
Some women golfers call it the grass ceiling - restrictions on when they can tee off at their club.

Like the executive "glass ceiling," the grass ceiling keeps women from advancing in business — by making contacts and networking, several women's groups said Thursday.
—Carolyn Pione, The Associated Press, May 20, 1994

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