- A hole-in-one.
- The position of the player when preparing to start a
Approach - The area in front of the green. A shot
to a green.
- The low cut area surrounding the green. Cut is shorter
than the fairway but slightly longer than the green
Away - Designation of player or ball furthest
from the hole and therefore next in turn to play.
Back nine - Second nine holes of an 18-hole
Backspin - Reverse spin of a ball when struck.
- A natural or synthetic material used to cover a golf
ball, preferred by professional or low handicap golfers
for it's "feel" and performance.
mark - The indentation made on a green by a highly
lofted shot. It should be repaired by the golfer.
Bent - A finely textured species of grass used
for greens and some fairways, mainly used in the north.
Bermuda - A coarsely textured species of grass
used where bent grasses will not grow.
ball - The best score on a hole by two or more
partners in a best ball match.
Birdie - A score of one stroke under par on a
Bite - A ball struck with sufficient backspin to
make it stop quickly or actually roll backwards.
Bogey - One stroke over par on a hole.
Break - The sideways curving of a putt caused by
a sloping green.
Bunker - A sand hazard, also call a sand trap.
Chip shot - A short approach shot of low
trajectory. It usually rolls more than it flies.
leather - The soft leather used in golf gloves and
usually a special lamb skin.
- A person whose job is to carry a golfer's clubs and
advise them of strategy and course layout.
Closed Stance - Left foot closer than right foot
to intended line o flight.
Clubface - The surface of the club that normally
strikes the ball.
Course Rating - The score a zero handicap golfer
should make when playing under normal circumstances.
Courses are rated by the USGA using a procedure called
the Slope System.
Cup - Metal or plastic lining inside the hole.
Also the term used as an alternative to hole.
Divot - Section of turf cut out by a golf swing.
Divots should be replaced and tamped down immediately.
Dogleg - A hole with fairway that bends right or
Double Bogey - Two strokes over par on a hole.
- To sink a long putt.
Draw - A hook that you can smile at when it
Drive - Initial shot on a par four or five hole.
Dumb - To stand anywhere in front of the ball
when the golfer is hitting.
Eagle - Two strokes under par on a hole.
Fade - A slice you can smile at when it finishes.
Fairway - The area between the tee and green that
is mowed or specially prepared.
- A poor golf shot caused by hitting the ground before
the club head hits the ball.
Fore - Warning cry shouted to players in danger
of being hit by a ball. If in doubt, yell
Front nine - First nine holes of an 18-hole
Green - The closely mown area that contains the
hole and flagstick.
Half or Halve - A tied hole in match play
Handicap - A number indicating golfer's skill.
Based on an average of lowest ten of the last 20 rounds.
Hazard - A bunker, water hazard, or lateral water
Honor - The golfer or side entitled to tee off
first on the next hole is said to have the
Hook - A shot that curves sharply from right to
- The hollow portion of the club head where the shaft
attaches to the club head.
Inside-Out - Club head movement across the
intended line of flight from left to right at impact.
Intended Line - The planned path for a shot. See
- The position of the ball on the course. In club
manufacturing the angle of the club head set on the
- The planned path for a shot. It is bad etiquette to
step in someone's line on the green.
- The rim of the hole.
- The degree of slope back from vertical of a clubface.
Mulligan - A second attempt at a shot, sometimes
allowed in a friendly game. Not allowed by the rules of
Out of Bounds, O.B. - Ground designated on which
play is prohibited. Usually marked by white stakes.
Outside-In - Clubhead movement across the
intended line of flight from right to left at impact.
Overlap - The grip used where the little finger
of the right hand overlaps the left forefinger; also
called the Varden grip after Harry Varden..
Par - The score an expert golfer would normally
make on a hole. Two putts on the green would be
calculated. Par is usually a function of distance of a
up to 250 yards
251 to 470 yards
471 yards and over
Penalty stoke - One stroke added to a golfers
score on a hole under certain rules.
weighting - The design of a club head (iron usually)
that distributes the weight around the outside of the
club head. Considered easier to hit and more forgiving
than "forged" clubs.
- The Professional Golfers Association. The ruling body
of professional golf. Most golf professionals excluding
the tour professionals belong to this organization. Not
to be confused with the PGA Tour - The
Association of playing professional golfers that runs
the 40 or so Tour events. This is similar to the Major
Leagues or the NBA for golf.
Pitch - Approach Shot of high trajectory that
normally flies farther than it rolls.
Preferred Lie/Winter rule - An easing of the
rules (under certain conditions) so you can move the
ball slightly to improve you lie in the fairway. Not
recognized by the rules of golf.
Ball - A second ball played from the same place as
the original when you suspect your first ball may be
lost or out of bounds.
Pull - A shot that travels left of the intended
line but generally straight.
- Low controlled golf shot, used with a shorter swing to
improve your lie.
Push - A shot that travels right of the intended
line but generally straight (left if you're left
- A stroke made on the green with a putter.
out - Allowing a golfer putt a short stroke into the
hole, out of turn, to reasonable speed up play. An
exception to the rule of etiquette where the farthest
ball away hits first.
Release - The swinging of the arms and rolling
over of the forearms.
- Permission given under the rules to lft and drop the
ball without penalty.
- Area between tee and green that is not fairway or
Round - Normally 18 holes in sequence.
and Ancient - The rule making association based in
Scotland at St. Andrews.
golfer - An excellent golfer with a handicap of 0.
- Hitting the ball off the hosel to the right (left if
you're left handed).
- A shot that curves sharply from left to right.
- When a golfer hits a ball with the leading edge of the
club, the ball's flight path is low and straight and
usually flies/rolls farther than intended.
- Hit a golf shot extremely high and short,
Square - A clubface and/or stance aimed down the
intended line at impact.
Stroke - A forward movement of the club with the
intention of striking the ball.
Tee - The small wooden peg the ball is set on for
a drive. Also used to refer to the teeing area of a
the flagstick - Holding the flagstick while a fellow
golfer readies their putt. Allows them to better line up
the putt. Flag is removed after golfer putts but before
the ball reaches the cup.
Top - A mis-hit of the ball by striking the ball
above it's center line.
- United States Golf Association. Golf's rule making
association in the United States.
Course Rating - "Course Rating" is the
evaluation of the playing difficulty of a course for
scratch players. Course Rating is expressed in strokes
and decimal fractions of a stroke, and is based on
yardage and other obstacles to the extent that they
affect the scoring ability of a scratch player. Courses are rated by authorized
golf associations, not by individual clubs.
Slope Rating - "Slope Rating" reflects
the relative playing difficulty of a course for players
with handicaps above scratch, whereas Course Rating is
based solely on difficulty for the scratch player. The
lowest Slope Rating is 55 and the highest is 155. The
average Slope Rating for men and women is 113.
rules - A change in rules due to cold or poor
weather that allows the golfer to move the ball within a
six inches of the original lie without penalty. usually
the course or club posts "winter rules in
- "Yardage Rating" is the
evaluation of the playing difficulty based on yardage
only. It is the score a scratch player on his game is
expected to make when playing a course of average
- Chronic misplay of short putts due to nervousness or a
twitching of the hands.