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Anchored Putters Rules Change (Effective January 1, 2016)


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Originally Posted by dave67az

Annual dues/donations accounted for $16.3 million in revenue last year of their $137+ million total revenue (a little under 12%).

(http://www.usga-digital.com/usga/20120125?sub_id=JggDrvBjPGjv#pg19)

While this may be more than a "small fraction" of their budget, the few members who will actually drop their memberships because of this ruling will certainly be a small fraction as evidenced by the opinions on this forum.

Valleygolfer, you nailed it, too.  Dust in the wind, just like square grooves.

What are square grooves?

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It seems equitable to me that way.  Otherwise it burdens/impacts some players in an inequitable fashion. Calm down, or at least do some Google research before you start with the ad homin

You gotta admit, Dave, the fact that a pencil hanging from a string is affected by gravity, indisputably settles whether anchored putting is consistent with the spirit of the game. If only the

Chas, you're right.  The tapestry reveals a lot about the long putter saga.    Here Harold, Earl of Wessex, and his foursome have just checked in with the starter.  Harold is picking which cart to use

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Is GC putting too much drama on this? Was like watching a state funeral tonight. The webinar was enough detail to last until 2016. I could do without the anatomically correct doll thing the hosts are going through. Though kind of funny seeing Charlie next to Brandelf C. Is that guy dwarf?

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Originally Posted by Texian

It will affect my support for an organization that makes useless modifications to rules that need none in this area.

They disagree that it was unneeded and useless.

Originally Posted by SprayTech

The only thing that looks bad is that anchor rule was always there , but they have let it go on for almost 30 years , and NOW decide to make a decision ? They should of stopped it long before now IMO  , would of been alot less controversy !

There was never an "anchor rule" that was always there. They simply didn't forbid it. That's a subtle but important difference.

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Originally Posted by Texian

Like I said, the new rule will not affect me. It will affect my support for an organization that makes useless modifications to rules that need none in this area. The game on the professional, and more importantly, amateur level, was doing just fine without this.

Apparently you are in the minority, both here and most everywhere.  And it won't have any significant effect at the amateur level, since the long putter is rarely seen.  Much ado about nothing, just like the hubbub about the groove change.

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Is GC putting too much drama on this? Was like watching a state funeral tonight. The webinar was enough detail to last until 2016. I could do without the anatomically correct doll thing the hosts are going through. Though kind of funny seeing Charlie next to Brandelf C. Is that guy dwarf?

Half the time the only difference between the Golf Channel and the National Enquirer is the topic.

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Most who used this putter KNEW it was different, and took advantage of it, how is that different then now illegal long distance balls?, or wedge grooves?, nothing other then the timing of the ruling. If your upset go whine at that....Like the foot wedge u can continue to do and use what u want, just don't compete with the gimmickey thing.... Like I've said before, and most opinions before me... It's not and shouldn't be part of the game. Like your swing, its something your gonna have to work on..
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Originally Posted by Texian

The USGA has asked for comment. Here is my comment, sent this morning.

If you feel as strongly about this as I do, I encourage you to express a similar reaction.

The "anchoring" rule change does not affect me. I use a 43-inch putter in a manner described as legal under the new rules, with my arm firmly "anchored" to my body through my shoulder connection, forearm not touching the body.

However, this (rule change) is unnecessary, and not, as your copyrighted slogan says, "For the Good of the Game."

You can count on NOT receiving my renewed membership in your organization.

Wow don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out!

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I think the best argument for banning the anchored putting method is in competition, at the pro level or the club championship or what ever, when someone is leading or near the lead, and coming to the last couple of holes, a lot of golfers start shaking like jello, and anchoring the putter is a distinct advantage in keeping the putter steady. Other than that, I don't think it matters much. I also agree that golf has bigger issues, like the ball and other equipment. When equipment dictates that golf courses being made have to be dramatically longer, whether new or redesigning a course, that's crossing the line as far as I'm concerned. I'm not a fan of the hit it and go find it type of golf being played now.
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Originally Posted by Wansteadimp

I'm slightly confused about whether the Langer method will be allowed (it maybe that he has come up with a different version) but I remember him anchoring the shaft to his forearm by using the other hand to hold it against the shaft.

Which is different to Kucher just letting the shaft rest against his arm - which appears to be clearly okay.

Yep this is ok

This may be a silly question, I wonder if their will be issues with players using a Angel Cabrera/Davis Love style, longer than most putter but not anchored into the body, with loose shirts in contact or close to coming into contact the butt end of the puttering.  Couldn't find any good pics of Davis but got a couple of Angel

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The problems I see with this ban from a competitive golfers perspective:

1. They are banning it because they suppose it provides an advantage...but they made no effort to stop the driver boom, or hybrids. Larger driver faces are a huge benefit to poor ball strikers. Same with cavity backs. They have marginalized the advantage of a good ball striker, and yet they have focused on putting. Or when people first start using interlocking or overlapping, is that not an advantage...why is that allowed, why not just keep it traditional and make everyone baseball grip? They have banned a preference.

2. Legal Precedent: The Casey Martin case showed us the Supreme Court has the power to define golf mainly because the consider the PGA a commercial enterprise for its members to achieve economic benefit...and not a private club. Thus they cannot create rules that would interfere with ones ability to achieve money aslong as it is deemed they are still playing golf. They ruled that walking was not a part of the sport, despite jack and arnies claims that it leads to tiredness and nerves at the end of the round. They basically set precedent that nerves arent apart of golf...so it will be tough for them to claim an advantage of the belly putter if they can't consider nerves and steady hands.

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Originally Posted by iacas

Yes, I predict that somewhere between 0.0 and 0.4 (rounded to the nearest whole number) people will give up the game of golf due to this rule being instituted in 2016.

This decision is not about "growing the game" it's about maintaining the integrity of the game with the side bonus of doing absolutely nothing to decrease participation in the game.

lol yeah I can see it now - "I was gonna take up golf until that damn belly putter ruling." It has no bearing on whether someone takes up golf.

I love the ruling. Exactly how I was hoping for. The clubs themselves aren't banned, just how you use them. Much like how Sam Snead's croquet-style putting was banned. You can't straddle the line & now you can't anchor the club. I've contended that anchoring isn't a stroke but instead is a manufactured method of taking the nerves out of it.

When you see a tour pro who struggled for years go to anchoring then almost immediately started winning or contending, you knew something was amiss. It was like an elevator-ride to the top without having to do the hard work.

I bet Tom Watson loves the ruling. When his putting went sour he never went to the belly putter. He stuck to his method of putting & practiced his butt off. That's how you're supposed to improve.

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Apparently you are in the minority, both here and most everywhere.  And it won't have any significant effect at the amateur level, since the long putter is rarely seen.  Much ado about nothing, just like the hubbub about the groove change.

I wouldnt say he is in the minority - this forum is the one place I see overwhelming support for the proposed change. Pretty much everyone that called into the PGA channel on xm yesterday was against the change (of course so were most of the guests on golf channel yesterday, but i wont go there)

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Originally Posted by zipazoid

I bet Tom Watson loves the ruling. When his putting went sour he never went to the belly putter. He stuck to his method of putting & practiced his butt off. That's how you're supposed to improve.

good point... when faced with putting issues, guys will be going back to the woodshed instead of looking for an easy way out with the long putter.

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Originally Posted by iacas

Yes, I predict that somewhere between 0.0 and 0.4 (rounded to the nearest whole number) people will give up the game of golf due to this rule being instituted in 2016.

This decision is not about "growing the game" it's about maintaining the integrity of the game with the side bonus of doing absolutely nothing to decrease participation in the game.

I get so sick and tired of hearing shit like this.. "integrity" of the game.... How many amateurs putt out every single hole.. Lets me honest here, This anchoring thing was just a public hanging against the pro's, generated by the pro's..   If people were so uppity about the integrity and rules of the game, there would be NO GIMME's in golf..  I can safely say that 80%+ of all amateur golfers and EVEN pro's when NOT in competition pick up gimme putts.. I wonder how many of the "pro-rule" change fans refuse to allow anyone in their group to take a gimme or a mulligan.. I think both gimme and mulligans are prohibited according to the rules, are they not?

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Originally Posted by MerVal

1. They are banning it because they suppose it provides an advantage...

Straw man argument.

They were not banned because anchoring provides an advantage. They were banned because the practice was not deemed a true "stroke."

Point #1 defeated.


Originally Posted by MerVal

2. Legal Precedent: The Casey Martin case showed us the Supreme Court has the power to define golf mainly because the consider the PGA a commercial enterprise for its members to achieve economic benefit...and not a private club.

Wrong. The Casey Martin case was ruled the way it was because the Supreme Court deemed walking to be non-essential to top-level tournament play (I disagree). The Supreme Court would not rule putting to be non-essential to top-level tournament play. I'll even ignore the fact that you tried to rely on your straw man argument to support point #2 and will focus purely on the legal argument: walking was ruled inessential, but putting would not be deemed so, and the USGA is free to make the rules for their game, just as people are free to choose not to play it if they want.

Point #2 defeated.

Originally Posted by ThominOH

I get so sick and tired of hearing shit like this.. "integrity" of the game.... How many amateurs putt out every single hole.

That has what to do with this, exactly? I know a lot of amateurs who putt out every hole. Some annoyingly so (a 12-inch putt that's been conceded in match play). Is it your point that because some people don't follow every rule to the letter we should just say "screw it" and not worry about the Rules?

Originally Posted by ThominOH

Lets me honest here, This anchoring thing was just a public hanging against the pro's, generated by the pro's.

Always good for a conspiracy theory, are we? Are you sure you can't work your hatred for Tiger Woods into this one somehow! It's all his fault!!! :)

Originally Posted by ThominOH

If people were so uppity about the integrity and rules of the game, there would be NO GIMME's in golf..  I can safely say that 80%+ of all amateur golfers and EVEN pro's when NOT in competition pick up gimme putts.. I wonder how many of the "pro-rule" change fans refuse to allow anyone in their group to take a gimme or a mulligan.. I think both gimme and mulligans are prohibited according to the rules, are they not?

So again, is it your position that because some people choose to break some rules, we should just throw away the Rules and do whatever we want?

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Originally Posted by MerVal

The problems I see with this ban from a competitive golfers perspective:

1. They are banning it because they suppose it provides an advantage...but they made no effort to stop the driver boom, or hybrids. Larger driver faces are a huge benefit to poor ball strikers. Same with cavity backs. They have marginalized the advantage of a good ball striker, and yet they have focused on putting. Or when people first start using interlocking or overlapping, is that not an advantage...why is that allowed, why not just keep it traditional and make everyone baseball grip? They have banned a preference.

2. Legal Precedent: The Casey Martin case showed us the Supreme Court has the power to define golf mainly because the consider the PGA a commercial enterprise for its members to achieve economic benefit...and not a private club. Thus they cannot create rules that would interfere with ones ability to achieve money aslong as it is deemed they are still playing golf. They ruled that walking was not a part of the sport, despite jack and arnies claims that it leads to tiredness and nerves at the end of the round. They basically set precedent that nerves arent apart of golf...so it will be tough for them to claim an advantage of the belly putter if they can't consider nerves and steady hands.

The Casey Martin issue was not concerned with a Rule of Golf, but with a condition of the competition on the PGA Tour which was in question.  Golf carts were (and are) largely in use outside of high level competitions (and even on the Champion's Tour), therefore not allowing it for medical reasons was deemed by the court to be discriminatory.  That is NOT a legal precedent for this situation, because this is a modification of a Rule which applies to all players, not just a select group.

And by the way, I was opposed to that ruling too, as the Tour should be allowed to conduct it's competitions as it sees fit without interference from the courts.  It's not like they instituted the condition just to keep Martin off the Tour.  It has been in place since carts first showed up on golf courses.  Another case of political correctness overruling common sense.  It's too bad, but some people have conditions which prevent them from playing sports at a high level, or in many cases, at any level, and that's just a fact of life.  I see it as no different from a ruling that which would require the NBA to lower the baskets to be more fair to short players who otherwise have the skills to compete.

Originally Posted by mvmac

This may be a silly question, I wonder if their will be issues with players using a Angel Cabrera/Davis Love style, longer than most putter but not anchored into the body, with loose shirts in contact or close to coming into contact the butt end of the puttering.  Couldn't find any good pics of Davis but got a couple of Angel

No, because this is not an equipment ban, it's a refined definition of what constitutes a stroke.  As long as it isn't anchored to a pivot point on the body in some fashion, then the club itself is legal.

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Originally Posted by Texian

If enough of the USGA membership is against this, and comments I've seen indicate many golfers feel that golf governing bodies have more important issues that they should be addressing, then the USGA will listen. If enough don't renew memberships, they will in fact "close up shop."

You act like this is a federal government agency.  They govern golf.  There aren't many more important things that they should be worried about above the conditions of competition.

Originally Posted by MerVal

2. Legal Precedent: The Casey Martin ... basically set precedent that nerves arent apart of golf...so it will be tough for them to claim an advantage of the belly putter if they can't consider nerves and steady hands.

I don't think that was the precedent.  IMO the finding from that case was that walking was not integral to the sport of golf.  It had nothing to do with nerves not being a part of golf (which would have been a ridiculous ruling anyway).

Originally Posted by meenman

I wouldnt say he is in the minority - this forum is the one place I see overwhelming support for the proposed change. Pretty much everyone that called into the PGA channel on xm yesterday was against the change (of course so were most of the guests on golf channel yesterday, but i wont go there)

But that's like people who go to consumer product online forums and see a thread about a defective product issue and assume that since 75% of the people in the thread have the same issue with the product, that 75% of the products are defective or 75% of the consumers across the country have the same problem.  You can't make that assumption.  Outrage generally results in people being more vocal, even if they are in the minority.  In this case, I won't venture to guess how the percentages would break down, but I would assume that, among amateurs, it IS the minority simply because the amateurs using anchored putting techniques appears to be the minority.  I don't see a bunch of traditional putters being upset enough over this to go online in droves and complain about it.

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Originally Posted by Texian

The USGA has asked for comment. Here is my comment, sent this morning.

If you feel as strongly about this as I do, I encourage you to express a similar reaction.

The "anchoring" rule change does not affect me. I use a 43-inch putter in a manner described as legal under the new rules, with my arm firmly "anchored" to my body through my shoulder connection, forearm not touching the body.

However, this (rule change) is unnecessary, and not, as your copyrighted slogan says, "For the Good of the Game."

You can count on NOT receiving my renewed membership in your organization.

This one minor rule change is enough that in your mind it negates all that the USGA brings to the game, and as a result you won't support them any more?

Wow......talk about the ultimate single issue voter!

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