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Select your Player type!
An experienced player who seeks a delicate balance of sleek look, soft feel and shot-shaping ability. Design is minimal, compact and classic. Around 15% of golfers are Feel players.
A Crossover player understands the game like a Feel player, and although prefers a mid-sized head, still benefits from moderate distance technologies. He or she expects a healthy mix of feel and distance. Around 35% of golfers are Crossover players.
The Distance player desires longer and straighter shots. Forgiveness- and distance-providing technologies are built into oversized head designs. Distance players compose about 50% of all golfers.
When you have a challenging shot, make sure to go through all the steps to fully prepare your mind. Gather the yardages you want to the pin - front of the green, back of the green and over any hazards. Analyze the conditions and how they will affect your shot; think about the direction of the wind and where you will have to aim it to execute your shot. Lastly, think about where you would want to putt from and which side of the green leaves you a better chance for an up-and-down. Going through this process will help you think and execute like the pros.
You are allowed to rake an area of the bunker for the sole purpose of caring for the course as long as you do not breach Rule 13-2 for your next stroke. If you are not improving the lie of your ball, the area around your intended swing, stance or line of play, then there is no breach of Rule 13-2. Remember not to rake an area of the bunker that your ball may come to rest in for your next shot. However, you can rake an area of the bunker you were previously in before moving to your next shot - if your only purpose was caring for the course.
Rule 6-3a dictates the time of starting in an official tournament: If you make it to the first tee within five minutes of your starting time, the penalty has been changed from disqualification to loss of the first hole in match play or two strokes on the first hole in stroke play.
Two strokes is better than a DQ, unless you're the competitor!
A fist pump is an exemplary way to keep positive energy and momentum from one shot to the next. Find a small celebratory motion that suits you when you sink a long putt or stick a shot near the pin. Just like reacting after a mishit, you'll want to keep your emotions balanced throughout the round.
Playing the tips can create a narrow opening on some holes. The important thing to remember is to focus on a specific target in the distance and dial in on that. Avoid thinking about the trees surrounding the tee box and instead focus on the landing area. The more specific and narrow your focus is the more accurate you will be.
Some situations make it easy for even experienced golfers to make a mistake and not match up with the rules. Rule 26-1 states that the ball should be dropped as near as possible to the spot where it was last played.
In the 2013 major at Augusta, there was a controversial drop by a competitor. He decided to take off two yards from the shot he previously hit in order to prevent hitting the flagstick or having it spin back into the water again. Since his drop was not as near as possible to his previous shot, he was in violation of the rule.
Learn a lesson from this violation and make sure to always drop as close as possible to where your previous shot was hit.
Make sure to read all the local rules or rules made by the committee before teeing off. An area that might normally be considered a waste bunker, or might appear to be one, can be determined a bunker for competition. If you're not aware of that going into the round, you might ground your club and get called for a penalty.
Rule 18-2b recently changed regarding the ball moving after address on the green. There is now an exception stating that if the ball moves after it has been addressed, and it is known that you did not cause the ball to move, you will no longer be penalized. For example, if a gust of wind moves the ball after you address it, there is no penalty and you will play the ball from its new position.
When on hard ground, the key is to stay balanced. Because you can't rely on your shoes to grip the dirt or hard surface, it’s important to find a stance that helps you stay still throughout the swing.
It is essential to hit the ball first, so move the ball back a little in your stance. This will allow you to catch the ball first before your club hits the ground. Maintain a solid, stable base.
If you learn to never hit an iron shot - or any shot - with doubt in your mind, your game will instantly improve. If you are unsure of what club to hit, back away and rethink the yardage, conditions and anything else that factors into the shot. After the decision is made, pick your club and trust that decision. Having confidence and committing to the club you choose allows you to trust your swing.
So, you've got a tucked pin and you're sick of playing it safe. Learning to hit a fade and a draw will help you when hitting approach shots into the green.
Follow these tips to hit a fade:
Follow these tips to hit a draw:
Have you ever been standing on the tee wondering how much the wind will affect your shot? Club selection when it's windy is crucial in order to score. This article will give you more of a clue than a wet finger in the air.
To start, most tour players will toss up a bit of grass to help them more accurately judge how fast and in what direction the wind is moving. Once they can gain an estimate of that, club selection is made easier.
The direction of the wind also affects shots differently, as well as the amount of spin a player puts on the ball. The more spin a player imparts on the ball the more it will be affected in certain instances on a windy day. That being said, a ball hit into the wind will fly higher than one hit with no wind. This is sometimes referred to as “Ballooning”. This causes the ball to fly much shorter than it would have had there been no wind.
If a ball is hit with the wind behind it, it will fly lower than it would have without the wind. While hitting with the wind does cause a shot to go farther, it will not affect the ball as much as a shot that's flying into the wind.
To give an idea of this, generally, a drive that is hit directly into a 20 mph wind will be hit 20 yards shorter. A drive hit directly with a 20 mph wind will typically go 10 yards farther. Therefore one can estimate that a drive into the wind loses 1 yard per mph of wind, and a drive with the wind gains ½ a yard per mph wind.
Say you're standing on a 170-yard par 3. You hit your 7 iron 170 yards when there is no wind. You know that there is 20 mph of wind. Therefore, if the wind is blowing into you, you should hit your 5 iron which you normally hit 190 yards. If the wind is with you, hit your 8 iron which you normally strike 160 yards.
Optimizing club selection in windy conditions will help you hit more greens and will put you in more par- and birdie-scoring opportunities.
We've all been there, things have been going anything but how expected they would. You are livid and not sure whether you want to just walk of the course, or break every club in your bag over a tree. One thing all players know deep down, but either don't listen to or don't care is this: playing angry is the worst thing possible for a game in trouble. It's easier said than done to use the following tips in the middle of a tirade, but taking them to heart now can help when you find yourself in a blood boiling situation in the future.
Golf is Only a Game: It seems so easy to understand when you're not mad, but you have to put the game into perspective. You came out on the course to relax and have fun, not to be angry for 4 hours. If you wanted that then you would have done your taxes instead. Remember the worst day on the golf course is better than any day at work.
Always Stay Positive: Being negative towards a bad shot is hard to avoid, but you must avoid it for your current and future round's sake. You must always have a selective memory in order to stay positive. The world's best athletes always dwell on the positive when their playing their best. Rather than focus on the negative of the forced water carry and the seemingly inevitable water ball, bring up a memory of one of your most perfect golf shots and let that be the only thing you think about. You'll be surprised how good your next shot is.
Take a Step Back: It's easy to miss something crucial about your game when you are livid. Take a step back and analyze what’s happening. Rather than cursing at yourself repeatedly for continuing to hit hook after hook, use your experience to self diagnose and fix your problem. Also, if you haven't played or practiced in a while and are playing poorly, you shouldn’t be shocked or upset. Golf is a game that requires a large amount of muscle memory. You can lose around 33% of your muscle memory in 7-10 days. The good news is, restoring your muscle memory after taking time off generally only takes a week or so of solid practice. So if you haven't played in awhile, try not to sweat it and practice more.
Be on your own team: You have no one else to rely on out on the course. No one else's signature is on your card but your own. That being said, stop sabotaging yourself on the course. Getting so mad you can't see straight hurts no one but yourself. No one would sabotage their own team if they wanted to win, so don't do it to yourself. Cheer yourself on, and stay positive.
Get your mind off the course: Typically we would suggest keeping your mind on the course and staying focused on the task at hand, but if you're having a rough day at the "office", it could be time to take your thoughts elsewhere. Think about your upcoming vacation, think about your favorite TV show, or even think about that hilarious cat video Joe from accounting sent you. Once you've been able to depressurize, then take your thoughts back to the course and finish your business.
Just as our tip on hitting into head and tail winds can greatly affect a balls flight, so can a cross wind affect a ball’s flight. Much like hitting into a head or tail wind, tossing a bit of grass into the air like Marcel Siem is above, is an excellent way to help judge how much wind there is, and in what direction it is blowing. As for how much the ball is affected, that depends on the exact direction of the wind.
To give an idea though, generally a ball is blown about 15 yards off line in a 10 mph 90-degree cross wind. So, for each mph of wind, you should estimate that it will move the ball around 1.5 yards. Unfortunately, things might get trickier for you when the wind does not blow directly north, south, east, or west of your target.
A wind that is blowing either Northeast, Northwest, Southeast, or Southwest of your target is typically known as a quartering wind. Quartering winds can be much more difficult to determine just how far your ball will be blown off line. To help estimate though, typically a quartering headwind (a wind that blows both into and across the target line) will affect a shot about 1.65 yards per mph of wind. This means that a 20 mph quartering right headwind would blow a shot around 33 yards short and left of the target.
Just like how a headwind affects the ball more than a tailwind, a quartering tailwind affects a shot about 1.25 yards per mph of wind. This means a 20 mph quartering left tailwind would blow a ball around 25 yards long and to the right of the intended target. Knowing your game can help tremendously when trying to figure how much the wind will affect your shot.
If your ball has a lot of backspin on it, it will be affected less by crosswind. Also, the lower your ball flight the less a cross wind will affect your shot. The higher your ball flight the more a cross wind will affect your shot. There is only one way to get the hang of this however, and that is getting out there and practicing.
Belly putters or any anchoring putting style will be banned by 2016, with the new rules book, but it is not the first time a different putting stroke has been banned. In 1967, Sam Snead’s croquet-stroke was banned by the USGA, effective January 1st of the next year.
When your ball misses the green on the side closer to the pin, this is referred to as short-siding yourself. This calls for a “flop shot”. To execute a flop shot, follow these steps :
When on the course you may need to “stretch it out.” If the weather is cold, it is even more important to stay loose and keep stretching throughout your round. Mid-round you might feel your back tightening up or your body may start to feel sore and ache. At this point try to do some toe touches to loosen up your hamstrings and get the blood flowing. Hold a club overhead and stretch from side to side or even take a few extra practice swings, nice and slow to keep your muscles loose and ready for the last few holes.
Golf used to not allow you to mark your ball on the green. If you were to hit a shot directly in your competitor’s line you were not allowed to move it, but instead your competitor had to figure out how to go around it, and was therefore “stymied.” Players would sometimes chip to go over their competitor’s ball, or hit around the golf ball in their line.
In 1920, a modified stymie rule was put into play, which would allow the stymied player to concede the opponent's next putt. Then in 1938, the USGA had a two-year trial where the obstructing ball could be moved if it was within 6 inches of the hole. This was put into effect in 1941 and was never modified until it was removed from the rules in 1952.
Sometimes you have a shot that requires taking a risk to pull off, like aiming between two trees to get back to the fairway. If you think your chances are good and you’ve practiced a similar shot in the past, take the risk and commit to it. If it seems too risky, play it safe and find an open shot to get your ball back in the fairway.
Be sure to get balanced first. Take enough practice swings, focusing on a balanced, stable base. The most important aspect of dealing with any uneven lie is to find a balanced stance, to help you stay stable throughout the shot. Make sure your shoulders are parallel to any uneven stance. The most important part is to follow through.
It is important to look for the best area to drop your golf ball. To do this, you may have to place your club head at various spots in the area you will be dropping. This will allow you to see how the rough is and where the best spot is to drop.
If you choose to drop, find the nearest point to where the ball already is and take a stance that gets you completely off the cart path. You get one club length from where the ball would be in your address position. The club length can be in any direction as long as it is not closer to the hole. Drop within this club length and play the ball from here.
Where would you drop? Where you should drop depends if you are a right-handed or left-handed golfer. The rule tells you to drop wherever the nearest point of relief is for the golf ball. If you are a right-handed golfer you will drop on the left side of the cart path. For a left-handed golfer you will drop on the right side of the cart path. This is the nearest point of relief for each golfer from where the ball would be and still gives you full relief for your stance.
When your ball comes to rest on or near a cart path, you can either take a drop or play it as it lies. Sometimes the ball might be sitting in the rough but in a favorable position. In this case you may decide to play the ball from here, even if your stance might be on the cart path. Sometimes it is worth hitting off the cart path to avoid an unfavorable drop in the rough, especially if it is thick rough and you are afraid dropping it will give you a buried lie.
If you are unsure of the rule, or cannot find a rules official around, you have the option of playing two balls for the rest of the hole. Once you come into a doubtful situation, you must announce you are playing two balls and which one you would like to use, if the rules allow for it.
Once you are finished with your round, you must check with a Committee member about the situation before turning in your scorecard.
It is important to remember to announce which ball you prefer to use, because if it is in line with the rules, then that is the one you are able to take. If you forget to announce which ball you want to count for your score, the original ball will be the score that counts.
Before hitting the shot, talk through what it will take to get the ball to the green. Whether you have a caddy, or someone playing with you, there are many aspects to think through before hitting:
When you hit a wayward shot and put yourself on the woodchips or pine straw, make sure to focus on a couple of key tips:
During your round of golf, many variables affect the score you put down on the card. Perhaps no piece of eqiupment is more important to playing well than your golf ball. When playing competitively, or even recreationally trying to play your best golf, the quality not only of the original ball out of the box can affect your scores, but also the current quality of the ball's cover and structure can affect shots and ultimately your scores.
A new ball, as is pictured here, will generallly perform exactly how you expect it to, pending any extraneous factors on the ball. A ball with a damaged cover such as the one pictured below can affect the ball's aerodynamic properties and change the performance of the ball.
Many things can damage a ball's cover. Such things include hitting the cart path, hitting a tree, hitting the ball with particularly sharp grooves, etc. In the example above, our player unfortunately hit a poor tee shot that hit the cart path. In this case, professionals would absolutely take this ball out of play as it could and would slightly affect their ball flight. However, most pros will only use even a brand new ball for about 3 holes due to their swing speeds. Occasionally, at their swing speeds, a ball can be knocked slightly out of its perfectly round shape, thus ever so slightly affecting ball flight. The vast majority of players however, will not be able to tell the difference or be affected by a ball that is slightly out of round, or has a minor scuff. So, swithing balls due to play length or scuff is your call, we're just here to help you make the decision.
While it can be tempting to switch golf balls every shot to gain the ideal performance for each shot, in competitive golf, that is unfortunately illegal. USGA Rule 15-1 states that a player may not switch from the golf ball with which he or she started the hole with. This means that you cannot use a DUO from the tee to gain extra distance, and then switch to an FG Tour to gain some extra spin hitting into the green.
This rule can be nullified by rules that require you to substitute a ball such as Rule 26-1 (Water Hazard Rule), 27-1 (Ball Lost or Out of Bounds), and 28 (Ball Unplayable). For Unplayable Lie rule click here. Rule 16-1b allows you to mark and lift his or her ball from the green. You are not permitted, however, to switch balls at this time and use a "putting ball". You may switch balls after you have completed a hole. So, theoretically, you could use a new ball on every new hole.
If you are playing competitively, make sure you check the tournament rules for the "One Ball Rule." This rule is typically only used in professional events, or at highly-skilled amateur events. The One Ball Rule states that a player must use the same brand and type of ball he or she teed off with on the first hole throughout the entire round. For example, when Steen Tinning tees off the first hole with an FG Tour ball, he then must play FG Tours throughout the remainder of his round.
Looking from all sides of your putt will help you figure out the break in the putt as well as if it is uphill, downhill or a flat putt. Learning to read your putt from every angle will help improve the amount of putts you have per green, and leave you with more tap-ins, rather than knee-knocking four-footers.
Hitting a bunker shot is very similar to a fairway shot. When you step in the bunker you want to make sure you follow a few basic steps:
When the ball is positioned below your feet on a downhill lie and you feel like you are reaching for it, make sure to bend your knees and maintain this solid-base posture throughout your swing. This allows you to get to the level of the ball and make better contact.
When the rough is deep, keep your arms relaxed and grip loose. Choose a club that can get through thick rough like a 7, 8 or 9-iron. When the ball lies below your feet, it will fly in the direction of the slope. Thus, it will trend toward the right for right-handed people and toward the left for left-handed people. Aim accordingly.
In the picture, Paul Lawrie needs to aim farther left than his normal target would be. That's because the ball will trend to the right, so he compensates by aiming left of target to allow for the extra movement.
If you find yourself facing an uphill chip shot, keep your weight more towards your front foot to obtain crisp contact. Keep your shoulders on plane (parallel) with the hill. These two tips will help you hit this type of chip shot and avoid the common mistake of falling back on your back foot, causing you to get under the ball. When you fall back on the shot, the ball usually comes up short of the green and leaves you facing another chip shot for par.
Keeping your shoulders on plane with the hill means they will follow the same line as the hill. Therefore, when facing an uphill chip shot, your shoulders will be on that same slope.
Short sided shots leave you with a lot of space between yourself and the pin, and grant you very little green to work with. These chip shots take practice on the chipping range.
Practice hitting flop shots or a variety of chip shots. You may want to try hitting the ball into the front of the green and letting it run out a little, or bumping it into the hill to bounce it up to the green while letting it take away some of the speed. Work on various, creative shots when practicing to build confidence and expand your options. The more you work on these different short game shots, the easier it will be to make more up-and-downs.
Sometimes you will have a sand shot where the pin is located close to the sand trap. You need to hit a higher lofted sand shot to give yourself the chance to save par. Make sure to open your stance, play the ball towards your front heel, open the clubface and have the butt of the club pointed to your belly button. Thump the sand upon impact.
Spend some time in your golf facility's short game area practicing this repeatedly at a target, and the move will come more naturally.
In this situation, do not tighten your grip or tense up. Rather, hold the club naturally. A deep lie in the rough may make you think you need to go after the shot harder, but keeping your arms and wrists relaxed will allow you to get the club through the thick rough. A more lofted club like a 7,8 or 9-iron may make the shot more successful. Take your setup, keep a loose grip on the club and power through it like every other swing.
When you hit in a water hazard, you have choices depending on what type of water hazard it is.
Lateral Water Hazard (marked with yellow stakes): For this type of water hazard there are 5 choices:
Regular Water Hazard (marked in red stakes):
Marking your golf ball allows you to identify yours from playing partners' when on the course. If multiple people in the group are playing the same ball there will be no way to determine which ball belongs to which golfer, unless you each have some sort of personalized mark on your ball. Get creative with the permanent marker and find a unique marking you like!
Start developing a pre-shot routine – find a playing focus, something that you will repeat for every shot. Make your focus be on the small intentions, something specific for each shot such as:
Before hitting the shot, talk through what it will take to get the ball to the green. Whether you have a caddy, or someone playing with you, there are many aspects to think through before hitting:
According to the USGA rules of golf, an unplayable lie is when you consider the ball to be unhittable, or unplayable, except if the ball is in a water hazard, or out of bounds. As you can see below, our player has found his ball plugged deep into the lip of the bunker. This is an example of a ball that might be declared unplayable.
Here our player finds his ball directly behind a tree, blocking his shot into the green. This is another example of a ball that might be declared unplayable.
When you proclaim an unplayable lie, pick up the ball from its current location and give yourself a one stroke penalty. Then you may do one of these three things.
1. Drop a ball as nearly as possible to the spot you originally hit from. As pictured in the photo, our player declared his ball unplayble following his tee shot. Thinking it was best given the circumstances, he elected to re-tee.
2. Drop a ball behind the point where the ball lay, keeping that point directly between the hole and the spot at which the ball is dropped. You may drop it as far back from that point as you want, but make sure you keep a straight line between the hole, and the spot where you declared the ball unplayable.
3. Drop the ball within 2 club lengths from the spot where the ball lay. Make sure you drop the ball no closer to the hole.
Read Rule 28 in the USGA Rule Book for greater detail.
Unsure of where to place the rake? Before you enter the bunker, look to see where the course has already placed the rakes. If the rakes are located in the bunkers, as shown, then after you finish raking replace the rake the same way. If the course has them aligning the perimeter of the bunker, place them outside.
After you have finished playing, think about both the positives and negatives from your round. This may be something you do right when you finish your round or while driving home from the course . Review the things you did well, and things that led to tough holes. This will help you determine which areas to improve the next time you hit the range.
Fairway bunker shots are some of the least practiced shots by amateurs. Spend some time on the range in a bunk hitting out of a flat bunker with no lip (no high hill in front of you) and master the following steps:
In order to hit a sand shot where you are close or relatively close to the green, follow these steps:
When you start transitioning and playing the course, you will need to be familiar with a scorecard and how to keep score. Padraig is writing down his score at the end of the hole. At this time, you will want to ask your competitors and playing partners their score. Checking everyone’s score at the end of each hole will make it easier to avoid any mistakes at the end of the round.
Golf is a game of etiquette and manners, no matter how casual the round.
Sometimes you'll get paired on the tee with a few other players you're not familiar with. You should introduce yourself on the first tee and shake each player's hand. When you complete the last putt, you should shake hands again. Padraig displays proper etiquette by removing his hat and shaking his competitor’s hand, at the completion of their round.
Tough holes come and go but it's how you react after putting out that affects the rest of your round. Clearing your mind of the bad shots and not fretting about a scorecard is the best way to move on. Find a trigger to help you let go of what happened and feel confident you'll make a birdie on the next hole.
A bunker is similar to a hazard in that your bag is not allowed to touch any part of the sand or any part of the “hazard”.
Stretching is imperative to loosen up your muscles before a golf round. Streelman makes sure to stay loose while on the course. Especially when the weather is cold, keeping your muscles loose throughout the round will prevent injury.
You can use your clubs, bag, golf cart or nearby trees to help you stay stretched out.
The tee box is the area at the start of each hole. Each course will have different colors representing different options to tee off from, provided on the scorecard. The tee options are the different yardages you can play the course, and depending on the skill level will determine which distance to play. Tee markers are placed at different spots on each hole to tell you where to start.
You must tee your ball up behind the tee markers but within two club lengths, to tee off correctly.
"Tee it forward" – pick the set of tees that allows you to reach the green in regulation consistently. Do not pick tees that are too challenging because others in your group are playing them. It is okay to play multiple sets of tees within one group. If you pick tees that are too challenging it will not only cause you to play slowly, as well as your group, but it will also be less enjoyable.
Think of it this way: you should be able to reach par 3's in one hit; par 4's in two hits, and par 5's in three hits. Your approach shot into the green should be a more lofted iron to start, not hybrids and fairway woods. It is better to start off easier and build confidence, then work your way to more challenging tees.
The Profile complete sets are ideal for advanced players looking to step up their game with a variety of lofts among the iron set, and three wood options from the tee and fairway. The Profile sets are unique in that they are the only complete sets that have a fitting system based on matching a player's height speculations to the length of the clubs in the set.
Learn more about these sets.
When your ball comes to rest on or near a cart path, you can either take a drop or play it as it lies.
If you take a drop you will find the nearest point to where the ball already is and take a stance that gets your feet and club head completely off the cart path. You’re allowed one club length from where the ball would be in your address position. The club length can be in any direction as long as it is not closer to the hole (sideways or backward). Drop within this club length and play the ball from here.
One thing you will notice after watching tour players is that their finishing position is not always the same. This is because they are trying to hit different shot shapes. In order to hit a fade, your follow through position must be slightly higher than normal. As you can see in the photo, Kevin Streelman's follow through position has his clubhead above his head and his hands. This helps aid in getting the ball to spin left-to-right and fading. Try it out on the driving range before taking it on the course.
One thing you will notice after watching tour players is that their finishing position is not always the same. This is because they are trying to hit different shot shapes. In order to hit a draw, your follow through position must be slightly lower than normal. In the photo, Padraig is making sure that his clubhead finishes below his head and hands. Swinging to get into this position will help create an in-to-out swing path and aid in hitting a draw. If you struggle with hitting a slice, practicing getting into this follow through position will help you hit less uncontrollable slices. Make sure you practice this swing on the driving range before taking it on the course.
When your ball comes to rest in a fairway bunker or a sand trap, you want to make sure to set your bag down outside of it. Bunkers and sand traps are considered hazards, which means neither your bag nor your golf club is allowed to touch the sand at any time other than when you’re making follow-through contact with your ball. If either one does touch before the golf swing, a penalty shot will be added to your score.
The bump and run is perfect for chip shots from off the green, where you have a lot of fairway ahead of you or a lot of green space to work with. It allows you to keep the ball low and bounce a few times, before rolling most of the way out to the hole.
Typically there are different colored flags on the green. A red flag (pictured) means that the flagstick is located on the front 1/3 of the green. A white flag indicates that the flagstick is located in the middle of the green. A blue flag means the flagstick is located on the back 1/3 of the green. Knowing the different colors allows you to add, subtract or play it the yardage it says depending where the flagstick is on the green. This is important in choosing the correct club!
Rule of thumb: For a front pin, located on the front 1/3 of the green, you will subtract 5-10 yards off the distance provided on the course yardage marker. For a back pin, located on the back 1/3 of the green, you will add 5-10 yards to the distance provided on the yardage marker.
When working on your swing and trying to get into the correct backswing position, focus on getting a full turn. Another way to think of this is to work on getting your lead shoulder to point at the ball, when you have completed your backswing (your left shoulder if you are right-handed or your right shoulder if you are left-handed). This allows you to get a full turn in your backswing and make it easier to check if you are in the proper position.
When on the green, place a coin or ball marker behind your golf ball. Once the coin or ball marker is placed stationary, you can pick up your ball and clean it. When you go to putt, make sure to replace the ball in front of the coin or ball marker, back into its original position.
In the pictures above, a Wilson Staff poker chip is placed behind the ball and then the ball can be picked up, cleaned, and put back when it is time to putt. Make sure when you replace the ball and remove the marker to not push the ball into a rotation, as that would cause a penalty.
To read your putt you will want to look from every side to see if the putt is uphill, downhill or flat and if there is a slant/slope that will cause the ball to fall oneside or the other, or "break".
If you notice that you are putting up a slope (uphill), you need to hit it harder, depending on how steep the slope. If you are putting downhill, you need to hit it much softer.
If you notice that the green slants on a side slope (sideways angle), you need to account for that as well depending on the steepness. So, if the surface left of the cup is higher than the area right of the cup, you need to aim left of the cup as it curves ("breaks") with the slope. If the surface right of the cup is higher than the area left of the cup, you need to aim right of the cup as it, again, breaks with the slope.
Line up the putt with where you want to aim it when you put it back on the green and then take one last look from behind before you step in and stroke it. The more you read greens the easier it will get!
To practice: Take some golf balls to a practice putting green that has some slope to it. Practice rolling the ball like you're bowling from one side of the green to the other. Switch places. Notice how the ball breaks right or left based on the slope, and how more severe slopes cause the ball to break more significantly.
To keep up with pace of play you should try to read the your putt while others are putting, but be careful not to distract them by stepping in their line or making noise. While your playing partners are putting, you can look at your putt from different angles and decide how it will break and the speed you will need to hit the putt, as well as take practice putting strokes. Doing this can save time for you and your group, but you must remember to be quiet and keep motions to a minimum.
If you choose to ride in a cart, be sure to stick to the cart paths especially as you approach the greens and tee boxes. Most courses will have signs in front of the green directing you which way to go. The signs will direct you back to the cart path.
If there is a string going across the fairway near the green, stay on the far side of it and head directly to the cart path to advance.
In order to hit a sand shot where you are close or relatively close to the green, follow these steps:
When you start transitioning and playing the course, you will need to be familiar with a scorecard and how to keep score. Carly is writing down her score at the end of the hole. At this time, you will want to ask your competitors and playing partners their scores. Checking everyone’s score at the end of each hole will make it easier to avoid any mistakes at the end of the round.
The Ultra complete set is all about distance. If you're taking your game from the range to the course but have a budget in mind, Ultra is your starting point.
Learn more about these sets.
Your group forms teams of two, three, or four players. In this case, it is a team of two. Your whole team tees off on the hole.
Your team then decides which shot you prefer for potentially scoring the best possible score on the hole. Talk together with your team then pick a shot to play your next from.
Every other teammate whose ball wasn't choosen then picks up their tee shots and drops next to the "best" shot. The new location is marked by a tee. You can place your ball next to the tee, but it must not be placed closer to the hole and must usually be within a few inches from the tee.
Keep playing in this format till you finish the hole. Play is identical on the green.
In this case, the example team has picked the player in black's approach shot. He then places a mark to the side of his ball in order to mark the location while still allowing for normal putting stroke. Unlike the fairway, when a teammate places his or her ball, the ball must be placed in the identical spot to were the original ball lay.
Keep on choosing the best ball and hitting till you finish the hole.
As this is a team game format, you may help you partner(s) form strategies and read putts, much like caddies do for professional players. In this case, the player in black is directly behind his teammate's putting line so he can read the putt's break if the player in red misses.
Many golf outings and recreational tournaments are played in this format. This is a great way to have fun, inspire teamwork, and go low together as a team.
Ricky Barnes is geared up in a hat and pullover to stay warm during his round. Golfers can and will play in all weather conditions! When heading to the course, be sure to check the weather for the day and pack all the gear you may need.
Learning how to hit a sand shot can be tricky. Use this drill to help build your comfort in the bunker:
When you hit the links you want to make sure you are dressed in the proper attire. The best way to wear the correct attire is to call the pro shop and ask them about the dress code.
Maria Verchenova is wearing a skirt and a collared shirt, along with her golf shoes. Ricky Barnes is wearing khaki pants along with a collared shirt and golf shoes.
Either of these options is always acceptable, on any course. Typically denim is not permitted on golf courses, or is frowned upon. The best advice is to wear a collared shirt that tucks into belted slacks, shorts or a skirt.
When you hit the range, begin with your short irons, 9-iron or one of your wedges. Each shot you hit on the range should have a focus. You should take practice swings and pick out a different target to aim at. Practice one fundamental that you learn from #GearUp or from a friend or pro. Once you master that technique, move onto working on another skill.
Start with gripping the club correctly, taking the club back on the correct plane, stopping your swing at the top, etc.
If you're just begining to practice, start by teeing every ball up with both your driver and your irons. This makes it easier to obtain solid contact, gets the ball up in the air and builds your confidence.
Your golf grip has a lot to do with the type of shot you will hit as well as your swing path. The middle picture shows a neutral grip, the left picture is a strong grip and the right picture is a weak grip.
Green etiquette is essential in maintaining a good relationship with your playing partners, as well as helping you look more knowledgable about the game. When on the putting green, you should always be aware of your playing partner’s location, and their ball’s location. There are a few things to keep in mind on the green to avoid hurting your playing partners.
On the green, do not stand on another player’s putting line. This is not only a distraction and a potential obstruction, but the impression of a player's foot can subtly change the line of their putt, potentially causing them to miss.
Also, be careful not to cast a shadow over your playing partner's line while he or she is putting, as this is visually distracting. Later in the day when the shadows are longer, you have to be extra conscientious of this (sometimes the shadows are so long you have to crouch down).
You should also not stand within your playing partner's field of vision, as this can also be a distraction (see the photo above).
Some examples of proper places to stand are locations that are out of the field of vision of the putter (see photo above).
Usually, the first person to hole out their putt is the one to pick up the flag and return it to the cup once his or her playing partners have finished putting (make sure to hold the flag on a windy day so the flapping doesn't create a distracting noise).
While waiting for all playing partners to hole out, you should remain close to or on the green while the remaining players finish their business on the green. Going back to the cart before everyone holes out isn't respectful.
The teebox is the first place to prove you have experience on the golf course. Make a great impression on your playing partners with etiquette and awareness at the start of each hole.
Usually, most players play "honors". Whomever has the lowest score on the previous hole has honors and tees of first, followed by the playing partners with the next lowest score. When you tie on a hole, honors usually carries over from the previous hole. Most recreational players and beginners play "ready golf", though. This means that regardless of who had the best score on the previous hole, the first person ready to hit does so. This sets a more casual tone, reduces stress and saves time.
While waiting your turn to tee off, you should stand at a safe distance behind your playing partner, out of his or her line of vision. Standing directly behind the hitter can pose a distraction, especially if you are too close, so it's strongly suggested you remain off to the side a bit (refer to the photo above). You should also remain silent and still during everyone's pre-shot routine and swing.
To be fully respectful, remain on the teebox during everyone's shot. It's not polite to hit first and then sit in the cart. If there's a groupmate that tees off on another teebox, display the utmost respect by walking or riding to their teebox and standing with them; this makes them feel equally important and shows you are willing to help them track their golf ball in the event of an errant hit.
For your own safety and to maintain etiquette, you should never stand in these locations: in front of the tee markers, anywhere in front of the hitting player, or directly behind the hitting player. The picture above displays a non-example of where to stand.
No fear, here are some helpful tips to get you underway!