The Golf Blog: USGA, R&A ban belly putting, anchored putting

mulligan, 21 May 2013, Comments Off on The Golf Blog: USGA, R&A ban belly putting, anchored putting
Categories: Uncategorized

The Golf Blog says: The USGA and R&A announced the adoption of their proposed change to the Rules of Golf banning “anchored putting,” meaning putting in which the shaft is anchored to the body, such as through a long or belly putter. The new rule goes into effect January 1.

Major winners Ernie Els, Keegan Bradley, Webb Simpson, and Adam Scott will presumably have to learn a new way to putt–or else sue the USGA to stop the new rule from going into effect. Matt Kuchar’s putting struck with the putting grip aligned along his forearm appears to be OK, though, under Note 1 below. The PGA Tour issued a statement that seemed to leave the door open for not adopting the rule for PGA Tour events: “We will now begin our process to ascertain whether the various provisions of Rule 14-1b will be implemented in our competitions and, if so, examine the process for implementation.”

14-1b Anchoring the Club
In making a stroke, the player must not anchor the club, either “directly” or by use of an “anchor point.”

Note 1: The club is anchored “directly” when the player intentionally holds the club or a gripping hand in contact with any part of his body, except that the player may hold the club or a gripping hand against a hand or forearm.

Note 2: An “anchor point” exists when the player intentionally holds a forearm in contact with any part of his body to establish a gripping hand as a stable point around which the other hand may swing the club.

Rule 14-1b will not alter current equipment rules and allows for the continued use of all conforming golf clubs, including belly-length and long putters, provided such clubs are not anchored during a stroke. The new Rule narrowly targets only a few types of strokes, while preserving a golfer’s ability to play a wide variety of strokes in his or her individual style.

The January 1, 2016, timetable for implementation also provides an extended period in which golfers may, if necessary, adapt their method of stroke to the requirements of the new Rule.


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