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Improved Lies  

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  1. 1. Do you regularly improve the lie of the ball?

    • Yes
      10
    • No
      77


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Hi Everyone, 

I started playing 2 years ago when I became fully retired and was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease in my right hand. (Exercise does wonders for controlling the shaking and so I try and play golf every day.)

I started out with the habit of adjusting the ball lie in the fairway in order to make my next shot better. As I gradually improved, I had several other fellows I play with make smart remarks about adjusting my ball lie. (Even though they did the same when it came their turn to hit.)

One day I was playing with a +8 handicap player and he made the comment that when I started playing in competition, I would not be allowed to change the ball lie without being challenged and maybe disqualified from play. 

So, earlier this year, I decided to play the ball as it lay. We do have exceptions as if the fairway is real soggy and muddy, we will allow the player to "clean and replace" the ball. 

So, this summer, I have played with fairly strict rules and taken penalty strokes for times I was forced to move the ball or change its position. 

At first, it was difficult and my score went up. Now, I don't give it a second thought.

It has made me a better golfer and has helped me concentrate on staying in the fairways better. 

Also, when I get in deep rough, I will generally take an iron and get back in the fairway. Before I would always try to hit a good ball from the rough and wound up staying in the rough and making another difficult shot. 

Now, the guys I play with, except for 1 guy, adjusts their lie in the fairway. They just can't leave it alone. I do not say anything, don't have to, but I get a little "put out" that they do so, especially if they end up with a better score. 😞 (However, we are all good friends and it is not something I would call them on. They were playing that way before me and I am not going to interfer with their golf game.) 

However, we play for 10 cents a hole, longest putt, and lowest score. On a good day, I will win 50 or 60 cents. Oh, a birdie will get you $1 from every player. 

We used to play for longest drive (and it had to stay inbounds) but myself and 1 other player started winning that too much so we dropped it. (And a couple of the older players couldn't ever win at longest drive.) 

Back to the question. 

I know a lot of amateurs do adjust their lie with the reasoning that they are not professionals and are playing for fun. 

No right or wrong answers, just curious. 

Do you adjust your lie before hitting?

 

Retired Old Man

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I can honestly say I do not. 

I wish it was because I hit every shot in the fairway, but that's far from the truth. If I draw a crappy lie, I just make the best of it. 

I pretty much only touch my ball when it's allowed by the rules. I do see quite a few people, I even used to play regularly with a guy who "fluffed" every lie. It kind of cracked me up, because even if he had a "good" lie, he'd fluff it up anyway. I guess it was just a habit. 

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13 minutes ago, RetiredOldMan said:

 

I know a lot of amateurs do adjust their lie with the reasoning that they are not professionals and are playing for fun. 

Depends on what I'm playing for on that particular day.  Play it both ways.  if I'm just out to enjoy the day - I'll adjust sometimes.  If I'm playing for score, I play it where it lies.  If I'm with others, I'll play it the same way they do.  I will concede that if you really want to do it the "right" way, play it where it lies.  

 

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If I'm playing kinda serious, I don't touch it.

Most of the time I might, if the lie is annoying or the course poorly maintained.

I've also adjusted it into worse lies if I'm practicing those shots or even on a whim.

(I rarely play serious, I don't bet (not even a tiny bit), I don't carry a handicap, I won't compete).

Your results do not surprise me, I find my best rounds are when i play straight up 'by the book' - it's the only way to really get exposure to everything a course will throw at you.  It does make for improving faster and more effectively - IMO

 

Lastly - I play golf for me.  As such, I don't care if anything I do bothers someone else - that's their problem.  And anything they do doesn't matter to me (unless it's just really slow play).  But if you are playing for any kind of competition - even nickels - then everyone really should agree on what's acceptable or not.

Edited by rehmwa

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1 minute ago, ChetlovesMer said:

I can honestly say I do not. 

I wish it was because I hit every shot in the fairway, but that's far from the truth. If I draw a crappy lie, I just make the best of it. 

I pretty much only touch my ball when it's allowed by the rules. I do see quite a few people, I even used to play regularly with a guy who "fluffed" every lie. It kind of cracked me up, because even if he had a "good" lie, he'd fluff it up anyway. I guess it was just a habit. 

Thinking about it now, it might just be I'm too lazy to bend over and adjust the lie. I could do that thing people do with toe of their club trying to get the ball to balance just right on a tuff of grass, but we all know that you can fiddle like that for a while and eventually you are going to find that you just have to bend over and fix the damned thing. 

Plus, the bonus of hitting out of a terrible lie is if you hit a great shot you can brag about how poor the lie was. And if you hit a stinker you have a build in excuse. No downside really. 

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25 minutes ago, RetiredOldMan said:

One day I was playing with a +8 handicap player and he made the comment that when I started playing in competition, I would not be allowed to change the ball lie without being challenged and maybe disqualified from play. 

A +8 handicap? Meaning that he is 8 strokes better than a scratch player?

26 minutes ago, RetiredOldMan said:

Do you adjust your lie before hitting?

If I am keeping score or plan on posting the score for handicap, no. If I am practicing, hitting multiple balls, etc then sometimes I will adjust it, but often times especially around the green, I'll make the lie worse to make it more challenging for myself.

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No adjustment to the ball unless the rules allow it.  For that matter, a bunch of the time I don't even mark and pick up my ball on the green.

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I play within the rules, to the best of my ability.  I will move the ball when the rules allow it, but otherwise I play it as it lies.  My group of friends always play for a couple of dollars, and we all play the same way.  Its really good to play that way for fun, so that I'm used to playing that way in a competition.

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No, play it as it lies, league rules. Except we are allowed to move the ball if it end up in a divot.

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I won't say I have never improved a bad lie. Pretty sure I have. Just don't remember the last time I did it though. Probably when our own, friendly group played. (gamesmanship at it's worst..lol)

That said, I have never done it when playing for an important score, that  I planned to turn in. Handicaps require accuracy, while playing with-in the rulles.

The best, legal way to improve one's ball lie, is to put a good swing on the ball in the first place. Then hope you don't find an unrepaird, fairwat divot

I have no problem with how others enjoy the their golf games. When my wife plays, she usually only putts....for par. She drops a ball on the green at a spot farthest from the hole. Others I know, will use a short tee for every shot to get to the green. Others will pick up their ball if it's with in a foot of the hole.  

Folks pay their money to enjoy the game in their own way. Who am I to worry about it? I have enough issues with my own game. 

Edited by Patch

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The only time I might improve my lie is if I am playing by myself and I can't post the score. But every other time I play I intend to post my score so I play by the rules. Occasionally we play "preferred lies" in your own fairway due to course conditions but that is it. And BTW, if you are allowed to play "preferred lies", don't just play hockey with the ball, pick it up and give yourself the best possible lie. The better players all know this, but I always see high handicappers just moving the ball around with their club. 

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On tournaments only if the rules allows for it. 

On practice rounds depends on what i´m practicing. 

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2 hours ago, iacas said:

I don't unless conditions are rather poor. Occasionally when practicing I will, but that's often to give myself a worse lie.

Also, time for an avatar, please, @RetiredOldMan.

I am playing a Men's Senior Tournament this afternoon and will get some pictures taken for my Avatar. Meant to do it the  other day, took my phone, played 18, went home and forgot to take any pictures. (Senior Moment) 

Sorry, 

Retired Old Man

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If I'm just messing around, I'll roll it (when by myself). When I play in the games with the guys, we play it down everywhere except in divots in the fairway. I don't mind playing out of a divot but not if everyone else is not playing out of them. The funny thing is....in the past 5 years or so, I've only been in one divot. 

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I play the ball as it lies.  Why forego an opportunity to be creative?  Besides...there is something uniquely satisfying about extricating oneself from a difficult situation.  

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