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How many of you "fluff" your ball or play 6"/winter rules all the time?


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  1. 1. Do you fluff your ball or play 6"/winter rules all year around?

    • Yes, always or almost always
      4
    • Sometimes, depending on my mood...
      24
    • No, play the ball where it lies (unless it's REALLY bad like sunk in a fairway or GUR)
      94


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Originally Posted by Fourputt

And yes, if you never play from those lies, then you'll never learn how to do it when you need to.  I've even played in money games where the other guys were playing under the preferred lies local rule, and I chose to play the ball down.  I've never lost a significant amount by doing so, and I win more than I lose, because those so-called trouble shots are really no different from any other shot in golf.  You just have to bear down and focus.

I agree that rolling to ball doesn't confer any advantage.  I play the ball down and my scores wouldn't change simply from rolling the ball to a preferred lie in the fairway (now throwing it out of the woods is a different matter and I know plenty of guys who do that!).  It's ironic because so many guys roll the ball regardless of any perceived need but simply as a matter of course.  Where the problem arises that I've seen numerous times is that when that guy is specifically banned from being able to "improve" his lie that he takes a big psychological blow to his game.  Not to mention the unthinking nature of having to change in ingrained habit in what can be a pressure situation.  I play in a few club and local tournaments a year where the rules of are strictly enforced and I find it a whole lot easier to function under those conditions when that is my normal course of action during regular outings in friendly competition.

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Originally Posted by ejimsmith

not only do i not touch the ball, i get real pissed (though i keep my cool when it happens) when people pick up a ball to check who's it is.  goddamn just thinking about the situations where i've walked up towards my ball, only for some a-hole i'm partnered with drive up and feel the need to 'check' it for me by picking it up.

I'm with you on that. Me and a partner are in the bunker and we're playing different balls. He's got a Pro V1 with a logo and I've got an NXT Tour no logo. Instead of looking at both balls (they were less than 6 feet apart, he picks up mine and say's "this is yours" hells bells man just because it's legal to pick up a ball to identify it, why not look at both balls (without picking them up) and surely you can identify one and at that point you know who belongs to the other one.

Gripes me too when people pick up your ball in the deep rough or in the trees and toss it to you because it's in a lie that they won't play from. I pride myself in be able to get a shot out of the heather without taking a penalty and damn it, let me be the judge as to whether it's playable or not.

Another thing while I'm on the rant is you guys that won't hit out of a divot, never practice hitting out of a divot, and then call me anal retentive because I want to play by the rules. "Aw come on, we're here to have fun" Yeah, well play by the rules or exempt yourself from winning any of the prizes/money if you don't want to play the game we are playing.

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I used to, but have tried to cut back on that. I want to know what I "really" shoot versus what I shoot with preferred lies, mulligans and the like.

That being said, I don't get all the venom here about people who do fluff the ball. If they paid their money to be on the course, then I don't seen any reason why they shouldn't play the game to their full enjoyment (while not taking forever, etc. You know what I mean). I've played pick-up basketball games where rules weren't followed (3 seconds, travelling, hand checking). Played pick-up baseball where there were no strikeouts. Played pick-up football where there were forward laterals.

The point being, golf isn't the only sport where things like that are stretched for instances of leisure. If a game is going to be used for a handicap, or being played for money or in tournament play, then yes all the rules should be followed. Otherwise, I don't care really.

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I play the ball down.  I will certainly bend a rule here and there ... mainly playing an OB or lost ball like a hazard if I didn't know to hit a provisional.  Also, hitting the flagstick on a putt (usually when I'm last on and hit a chip to tap in range, I tap it in, then pull the flag so the ball comes out with it).

But I actually enjoy finding my ball in unfortunate situations to see if I can recover from it.  My favorite shot from the last round was a pitch off of a small patch of hardpan near the end of the fairway that probably should have been marked GUR but wasn't.  My usual partners would always move their ball off of that, but I like the challenge.

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I dont move my ball, unless it is GUR.   If it isnt marked GUR, I will have someone I am playing with come and confirm it for me, so they dont think I am cheating.

I dont even know what the 6" winter rule is.  I play from the beginning of March until late November most years and have played when the greens are completely covered with snow and ice.  During that round, we still putted, but if you hit the flag stick, we counted it as in, because the holes were under 6 inches of snow and ice.  That was a fun round.  We lost a lot of balls that day.

I have a crap club in my bag, my old 5 iron, to get out of areas that are rocky or clay, so I dont break a club.

I try to stick to the rules as much as possible, only breaking them unintentionally.  If i do break a rule and someone lets me know about it, I take the appropriate penatly.

After all, if you cheat, you are only cheating yourself.

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This is a very interesting subject/topic.  Here's my opinion - if you're playing a really well kept course, 90%+ of your shots that end up in the fairway are going to have a good lie.  If you're playing on a course that is cheaper or whatever, that number might go down to 50%.  Where I live, it kind of sucks in this regard.  I can drive an hour to an area where golf courses are in much better shape, even the ones I can get on for $30 or so.  Anything closer and it's either private, or it's a crap shoot.  I mean, there are a couple of courses that have decent greens and tee boxes, but the fairways are still mostly just mowed and watered and that's about it.  I might have to hit 8-10 shots a round from "fairways" from a lie that's half sand, or hard packed, or some other undesireable lie.  I typically don't pick up or move my ball in any way, unless it's REALLY bad and completely unreasonable, like rolling into a patch of sand in what is obviously supposed to be a fairway.

If I'm not on the fairway, then I always play it as it lies, unless if course if it's standing water or some other situation where rules dictate otherwise.

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Originally Posted by Chief Broom

I agree that rolling to ball doesn't confer any advantage.  I play the ball down and my scores wouldn't change simply from rolling the ball to a preferred lie in the fairway (now throwing it out of the woods is a different matter and I know plenty of guys who do that!).  It's ironic because so many guys roll the ball regardless of any perceived need but simply as a matter of course.  Where the problem arises that I've seen numerous times is that when that guy is specifically banned from being able to "improve" his lie that he takes a big psychological blow to his game.  Not to mention the unthinking nature of having to change in ingrained habit in what can be a pressure situation.  I play in a few club and local tournaments a year where the rules of are strictly enforced and I find it a whole lot easier to function under those conditions when that is my normal course of action during regular outings in friendly competition.

Just like any bad habit, do it often enough and someday it will happen unthinkingly when you don't get away with it.  I don't really care how another casual player chooses to play.  One of my good friends and a man I played with regularly until I moved away from Colorado this spring is a mover and fluffer. He wouldn't think of ignoring a penalty for being in a water hazard, he plays provisional balls when it's proper, yet I can't remember the last time he played from a bad lie.  He doesn't try to be sneaky about it... it's just a natural part of his game.  He knows that I don't take his scores seriously, even when I'm the one keeping score for the group.  It hasn't affected our friendship, but I don't think I'd ever consider playing a competition with him.

Originally Posted by bigwave916

Another thing while I'm on the rant is you guys that won't hit out of a divot, never practice hitting out of a divot, and then call me anal retentive because I want to play by the rules. "Aw come on, we're here to have fun" Yeah, well play by the rules or exempt yourself from winning any of the prizes/money if you don't want to play the game we are playing.

This is another curious thing for me - the notion that golf can't be fun if you play by the rules.  Where did such a peculiar idea ever come from?

Originally Posted by MajorSlice

I dont move my ball, unless it is GUR.   If it isnt marked GUR, I will have someone I am playing with come and confirm it for me, so they dont think I am cheating.

I dont even know what the 6" winter rule is.  I play from the beginning of March until late November most years and have played when the greens are completely covered with snow and ice.  During that round, we still putted, but if you hit the flag stick, we counted it as in, because the holes were under 6 inches of snow and ice.  That was a fun round.  We lost a lot of balls that day.

I have a crap club in my bag, my old 5 iron, to get out of areas that are rocky or clay, so I dont break a club.

I try to stick to the rules as much as possible, only breaking them unintentionally.  If i do break a rule and someone lets me know about it, I take the appropriate penatly.

After all, if you cheat, you are only cheating yourself.

There is clearly a misconception as to what constitutes GUR.  GUR (part of the abnormal ground rule as it's called in Rule 25) isn't whatever you want it to be.  GUR is what is marked as GUR.  If it's not marked, then it's just "golf course".  Casual water is part of the abnormal ground rule, and it's clearly defined in the rules.  The player can determine for himself whether or not his ball lies in casual water by following the definition.  GUR can't really be defined so it must be marked in some way.

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I can't believe how many people move there ball from where it lies.  This is an easy rule to follow.  My course can get pretty crappy, but I take the bad lies after good shots as they come.  Thankfully we just had a state tournament at my home course so they had to mark all the GUR areas.  Many times I will think to myself if I was a Pro I'd play on near perfect courses, with galleries to walk down roughs, and spot my ball.  But alas I am not, so I will just grit my teeth when the course, or rules, screw me over.

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I play the ball down always.  I do play with a guy that moves every ball, although he's getting better about it since I started calling him out about it because he was beating me by 1-3 strokes.

There was one exception last year though.  I played a course that was in horrible shape and there were huge patches of bare ground in the middle of the fairway.  I'm talking 10-15' areas with absolutely no grass in them.  The group decided that since it was just a casual round we should not be penalized for hitting the ball in the center of the fairway, and would take relief as GUR although they were not marked as so.

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Originally Posted by ejimsmith

not only do i not touch the ball, i get real pissed (though i keep my cool when it happens) when people pick up a ball to check who's it is.  goddamn just thinking about the situations where i've walked up towards my ball, only for some a-hole i'm partnered with drive up and feel the need to 'check' it for me by picking it up.

Agreed.  Many of my friends with higher handicaps just have to pick up all the golf balls to check.  For this reason, I put my first name initial on the ball.  This way, I can tell if it's mine without even touching the ball.

Originally Posted by David in FL

I couldn't vote because there's no option for playing by the rules, without a qualifier....

I guess that's kind of what I meant by the 3rd option -- with exceptions being if you're playing on a fairway with muddy conditions or standing water and the ball is 1/3 into the ground or something.

I'd also add that another time I'll pick up my ball is when there are actually rocks next to it or behind it.  If it's bare ground, I'll play it as it lies.  But rocks, no thank you!

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Originally Posted by David in FL

Gotta say, I've heard a lot of reasons/excuses over the years for not playing the ball as it lies, but to benefit the course is a new one.


Doing it to "speed up the game" is pretty lame as well.  If speeding up the game is so important that it justifies ignoring the rules they should just come to the course, write down 67 on a scorecard and go home.

It just seems like a lot of people just do not understand the basic nature of the game.  It is a microcosm of life.  Good and bad breaks happen.  We are each born into different circumstances.  It is the player against the course.  If the course is in crummy condition then it is in crummy condition.  That is like being born into bad circumstances.  It is something to overcome, not something to justify cheating in life.

If you hit a good shot that ends up in a bad place then you have to overcome it  Just like bad breaks in life are things to overcome, not to cheat your way out of it.

It has long been a truism that playing golf with a man tells you what kind of man he is.  If he will cheat at golf he will cheat in life.  And just as cheating in golf usually is done with all kinds of rationalizations, so it is in life.

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"How many of you "fluff" your ball or play 6"/winter rules all the time?"

I did up until this season as this is the first year that I have kept track of my stats/scores/handicap.

In my opinion, giver, go crazy unless you take your game serious in the least at which point it is absurd/cheating.

I will just take a wild guess and say that 3 times per round (at least), your ball ends up in an odd/BS spot where if moved a few inches would be a perfect lie.  Those 3 times can compound into 5+ strokes on your bottom line score.

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I fluff my lies and move my ball from divots, rocks, hardpan, etc ONLY in casual rounds. And then only about 40% of the time. I also play collegiate golf, so obviously i have to play to the rules in the strictest sense in those tournaments.

I just dont see why everyone gets so upset about people bending rules in golf. Sure, if they are doing it when money is on the line or the club championship it's wrong and you have a right to be angry. But golf is just a game to most people. The vast majority of them will never be good enough play in tournaments, (except the ones at the local $15 dollar course) so if fluffing their lies or moving their balls makes the game more enjoyable for them then i don't complain.  Also, if someone is picking up your ball in the fairway or doing something else that irks you just politely ask them to stop. Works for me 95% of them time

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Originally Posted by Daniel Watkins

I fluff my lies and move my ball from divots, rocks, hardpan, etc ONLY in casual rounds. And then only about 40% of the time. I also play collegiate golf, so obviously i have to play to the rules in the strictest sense in those tournaments.

I just dont see why everyone gets so upset about people bending rules in golf. Sure, if they are doing it when money is on the line or the club championship it's wrong and you have a right to be angry. But golf is just a game to most people. The vast majority of them will never be good enough play in tournaments, (except the ones at the local $15 dollar course) so if fluffing their lies or moving their balls makes the game more enjoyable for them then i don't complain.  Also, if someone is picking up your ball in the fairway or doing something else that irks you just politely ask them to stop. Works for me 95% of them time

This type of thread isn't much different from all the "I average 300 off the tee" threads.  People want to be seen as righteous and perfect.

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I play on mostly sub $20 "goat-track" type courses.  I don't mind hitting from hardpan but there are a lot of cracks and holes, etc, etc where the lie really needs to be improved.  I play only casual rounds and don't run around bragging about all my (non-existant) biridies - so nobody should really care.

On the rare occassion that I play somebody (even if we're not playing for money) I play it as it lies or by whatever rule we all agree upon.  I played dollar skins last week at a place where, I swear, they don't even bother to maintain the fairways - only the greens.  I hit from all kinds of stupid lies - but my buddy had to, as well.  I won a dollar, lol.

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:-)[quote name="AmazingWhacker" url="/t/60955/how-many-of-you-fluff-your-ball-or-play-6-winter-rules-all-the-time/54#post_751583"].  I won a dollar, lol.    [/quote] I've always said, I'd rather win $5 from one of my golfing buddies than find a $100 bill on the ground! :-)
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