Golf Language of the
Putting Game

The Golf Putting Game has its own Golf Language. Learn these unique Golfing Terms and feel confident you really understand the 'Putting Game'.

We hope you find these terms interesting and informative!

(This glossary of Golf Terms about the "Putting Game" is not all-inclusive, and is aimed primarily at the beginner and weekend golfer levels.

Words which are italicized in green are also defined elsewhere in this Putting Language Glossary)

NOTE: All Terms Assume a Right-Handed Player

Golf Language - Putting A:


Above The Hole: Opposite of "below the hole". If the approach shot leaves the ball "above the hole", it means that the subsequent putt is going to be downhill. Distance control is more difficult when your ball is accelerated by gravity on its way to the Hole.

Address: Stepping up to the ball (taking a stance) and setting the club down behind the ball (grounding the clubhead). This is the final position taken prior to the start of the Putter take-a-way or Backswing.

Afraid of the Dark: A golf language slang term for a Putted ball which "refuses" to fall into the Hole or "Cup".

Aiming: Aligning the Putter clubface to the target, which can be the Hole, or to a Spot on the Green along the Target Line.

Alignment: The method with which a golfer positions themselves to the golf ball and relative to their feet, knees, hips and shoulders. These body elements should all be lined up square (parallel) to the target line.

Apron: This Golf Language term is the closely mowed grass between the Green and the Fairway, usually around three to five feet in width. This area adjacent to the Green is also called the "Fringe".

Attend (The Flagstick): When a player or Caddie removes and/or holds and the flagstick for the "Putting" player. The person tending the Flagstick should not drop the Flagstick onto the Green, as it will tend to damage the surface of the Green.

Also, when the wind is blowing, the Flagstick Tender should grasp the Flag to prevent it from flapping, which is a distraction for the player while putting.

Away: A Golf Language term for describing the golfer whose ball is farthest from the hole (or "Cup"). The player who is "away" should always Putt first. The exception to this rule is when all the players in the group agree to play "Ready-Golf". In that case, whichever player is ready to putt first (approved so by the other players), proceeds to putt.

The phrase 'Putting Green' is a normal part of Golf Language

Golf Language - Putting B:


Back Door:

Within Golf Terminology, "Back Door" is a Golf Slang term in reference to the far side of the putting "Cup". When approaching the hole, the putted ball catches the rim of the cup and curls around about half of the hole before falling in the "back" side.

Backswing: The motion generated by the "rocking" of the shoulders in a "Pendulum"-type movement, which begins the Putter moving backwards away from the ball.

Ball Mark: A sharp indentation or cup-like depression caused by the ball landing on the Green from a significant distance. "Ball marks" are to be repaired by the player causing the mark, but all players should repair ball marks as they see them.

Unrepaired ball marks can and most probably will deflect or inhibit a Putt from reaching the "Cup" as intended. If a ball rests in a ball mark, or there is a ball mark on the target-line of the putt, a player is encouraged to repair the ball mark prior to putting.

Ball Marker: A token or small coin used to "Spot" the ball's position on the Green prior to being lifted. Generally used when two or more players are involved in Putting on the same green, and primarily to move balls out of the way prior to subsequent putts to the "Cup".

Ballmark Repair Tool: A small double-pronged tool commonly made of hard plastic or metal, which is employed to repair ballmarks (also known as pitch marks) on the "Putting Green".

This is a tool that every golfer should carry in their golf bag. The "Ballmark Repair Tool" is often incorrectly called a "Divot Tool".

Behind: Putting Green etiquette requires that other golfers playing the same Hole are not to stand "Behind" the player who is Putting (also includes Caddies). It could be bothersome to the golfer who is Putting to have another player stand "behind" them.

There is no official "Rule" to prevent a competitor from "going to school" on another player's putt. However, watching it from "behind" the player is not an acceptable practice.

Belly Putter: This type Putter is anchored against the golfer's stomach, which serves as a fulcrum for making the Putting Stroke. The "belly putter" has a longer shaft than a conventional putter. As with the conventional putter, a belly putter is used by using a two-handed stroke with a somewhat similar putting posture.

The connection to the body with a belly putter helps to prevent the wrists from "breaking" through the entire putting stroke.

Below The Hole: Opposite of "above the hole". If the approach shot leaves the ball "below the hole", it means that the subsequent Putt is going to be uphill. Distance control is less difficult when your ball is not accelerated by gravity on its way to the hole.

Bent Grass: Bent Grass is the most popular grass for Putting Greens in climates where it grows well. Bent Grass is a very dense thin-bladed grass which can be very closely mown leaving a velvet-like smoothness for the putting surface.

Break: The amount of curve a putted ball will traverse due to the slope of the green, grain and dryness of the grass, speed -of-the-putt, and extreme wind.

Golf Language - Putting C:


Can: A Golf Lingo term referring to the Hole or "Cup" on the Green. Having "Canned" the putt, he won the tournament.

Carpet: A common Golf Term referring to the "Green".

Center cut: A Golf Language Term meaning "smack dab in the middle".

A putt that enters into the center of the "Cup" is called a "center-cut putt".

Center Shafted: A Golf Jargon term referring to the way in which the putter shaft is attached to the clubhead of the putter. If the putter shaft enters equidistant between the toe and heel, then that putter is said to be "center shafted".

Closed Clubface: When the putter clubface is angled left relative to the target-line, the putt will be pulled or "Yanked" to the left of the target.

Come-backer: A secondary putt required after the previous putt travelled past the Hole.

Conceded Putt: When a golfer during Match Play putts a ball within "Tap-In" range to the Hole, his playing partners will most likely "Concede-The-Putt". This means that the ball then may be picked up without being Holed.

Obviously the stroke that would have been necessary to "hole-the-ball" will be counted on the scorecard.

Contour (Green): The undulations in a putting green are considered "Contours". Some putting greens are fairly level and flat. However, most Greens contain ridges and swales which cause the putted ball to veer away from a straight line and "Break" or curve away from the intended target-line.

Cuban: One of the Golf Words relating to the putting action where the ball stops just short of dropping into the "Cup". The ball "Needs One More Revolution"!

Cup (golf): A plastic retainer or "Cup" is inserted into the Hole in the green which is 4 1/2 inches in diameter, and 4 inches deep. The flagstick is placed in the cup to indicate where the cup is located on the green.

The cup and flagstick are moved to a different location on the green each day. There is only one cup per green. The cup is also referred to as the "Hole".

Golf Language - Putting D:


Dance Floor: The Golf Language term "Dance Floor" is commonly referring to the "Green", which has a very smoooooth surface!

Decelerate: A slowing or decreasing putter clubhead speed through the impact area.

Die It in the Hole: On the putting green, when putting the ball towards the Hole and it loses the last of its momentum, but still drops into the "Cup", it is referred to as "Die it in the Hole".

Double-Cut: The term "Double-Cut" used in the Putting Game refers to how the Greens are mown. Double-Cut means the Green has been cut twice in the same day (usually back-to-back.

The second mowing is usually perpendicular to the first mowing, but can be diagonal as well. "Double cutting" is one of several ways the Speed of the putting surface can be altered or determined for that particular day.

Double Green: A "Double Green" is a quite large contiguous Green which accommodates two Holes with flagsticks in place. These type greens can be found on parkland-style courses as well as "Double-Nine" courses.

'Conceded Putt' is a part of Golf Language

We hope you have found this Golf Language list on Terms of the Putting Game helpful.

Knowing the basic putting terms should make your game more interesting and informative.

Thanks again for Visiting Us!


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