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How To Properly Repair Ball Marks

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1 hour ago, sjduffers said:

I see some people doing it right, but there a lot of folks who don't for sure, and they all claim they watch the pros.

I think a lot of pros probably don't even know they're not doing it right. What they do makes it so that they can play on the greens without issue, but they're gone long before the long term effects manifest.

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40 minutes ago, billchao said:

I think a lot of pros probably don't even know they're not doing it right. What they do makes it so that they can play on the greens without issue, but they're gone long before the long term effects manifest.

Perhaps, but what I am seeing watching the pros is they fix their own ball marks the proper way, very quickly (with quite a bit of twisting motion to it), but when their "repair" an old mark on their line of putt, they just raise the turf above ground and tap it down, i.e. doing it wrong. It's hard to see the first part that I am talking about because a player walking to a green is seldom shown on the broadcast: it's mostly dead air that is normally replaced by either a commercial or some other player on some other hole doing something else.

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This is a particular sore point with me. Sometimes it seems as if golf has been taken over by a gang of hillbillies, "drunk on 'shine who don't give two hoots 'bout nuthin'! They either repair ball marks poorly or not at all. Everywhere I play I fix my ball mark, if I've made one, an at least a half dozen others!

And here's a playing tip. Make sure to check the line of your putt for ball marks! I didn't for a while, but after a couple of putts hopped a foot in the air, I started to!

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16 hours ago, billchao said:

TST has a higher concentration of conscientious golfers than the general population, so it doesn't surprise me at all that a lot of people here know how to repair ball marks properly. It's this extra interest in the game that brings us all together to discuss it in the first place IMO.

Plus, you said this yourself:

Where do you think I learned how to properly repair a ball mark? ;-)

I think Sable Oaks would agree. I recall you, @Valleygolfer and I and his buddy doing some extra repair when we visited. 

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23 hours ago, sjduffers said:

Perhaps, but what I am seeing watching the pros is they fix their own ball marks the proper way

I'm not sure I've ever seen a pro properly fix a pitch mark.

I blame the pros for all the amateurs who don't know how to fix then correctly.

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12 hours ago, colin007 said:

I blame the pros for all the amateurs who don't know how to fix then correctly.

I wouldn't blame the pro golfers.  Most amateurs that don't fix their ball marks don't watch the professionals unless it is a major.  There is just a lot of ignorance regarding repairs.

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2 hours ago, dennyjones said:

I wouldn't blame the pro golfers.  Most amateurs that don't fix their ball marks don't watch the professionals unless it is a major.  There is just a lot of ignorance regarding repairs.

The only way to see pros fix ball marks is by going to an event in person.  On TV they cut away to show as many live shots as possible and I'm thankful for it. 

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11 hours ago, Runnin said:

On TV they cut away to show as many live shots as possible

Ha ha ha ha. :-) If only that were true! :-D

And FWIW I've seen plenty of pros repair ball marks improperly - theirs, on their line, doesn't matter. Most repair them by popping.

Repairing them properly takes a little more time than just a single pop.

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The original thread is what first showed me how to properly repair a ball mark. I’m not sure I’ve seen more than a small handful of people ever do it properly, so hopefully this new thread too sees a wide audience. 

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12 hours ago, iacas said:

Ha ha ha ha. :-) If only that were true! :-D

And FWIW I've seen plenty of pros repair ball marks improperly - theirs, on their line, doesn't matter. Most repair them by popping.

Repairing them properly takes a little more time than just a single pop.

 

On 10/8/2017 at 8:16 AM, dennyjones said:

I wouldn't blame the pro golfers.  Most amateurs that don't fix their ball marks don't watch the professionals unless it is a major.  There is just a lot of ignorance regarding repairs.

 

23 hours ago, Runnin said:

The only way to see pros fix ball marks is by going to an event in person.  On TV they cut away to show as many live shots as possible and I'm thankful for it. 

They show pros improperly fixing pitch marks every single broadcast. People imitate what they see.

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On 10/6/2017 at 10:34 AM, Lihu said:

Yeah, I tend to fold over the big flap that my longer approach balls leave back over the hole in hopes that it would "heal" somehow. I don't play daily any more so I have no idea of that works or not or if it's a fruitless attempt to save that flap of grass. I should assume not and gently shove more grass from the surrounding area. . .

 

On 10/6/2017 at 10:39 AM, iacas said:

Yeah… Do not do that.

Throw that piece away.

 

So, I did this yesterday. I'm hoping that the grass will grow back.

The holes I leave seem to be a lot larger than those shown in the video. They're about the ball width or wider in the direction it landed, like an ellipse. I needed to gently shove and didn't lift the grass from an inch in each direction inward. This leaves almost a 2" area of "loose grass" in the area of my repairs.

Edited by Lihu

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This is a great topic as many golfers do not even make the effort. We need to make people aware that every shot leaves a mark. So repair your mark and another.

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On 5/2/2007 at 5:03 PM, iacas said:

Pros do not do it right. They do it the lazy way. The bad way. They won't be playing there after 1, 2, or 3 more days so what do they care if they've pockmarked all the greens with their improper methods.

Not once have I seen a tour pro on TV repair a ball mark properly. I have seen some do it in person at tournaments (TV doesn't often show pros repairing ball marks - that's pretty boring TV).

Well, this makes me sad. Fixing ball marks is a lost art. Even for the Pros?????

When my club aerated the greens a few weeks ago, I played and I've never seen so many ball marks. I suppose they thought, there are so many holes on the green already, so......

At my club, I always see ball marks on the green. I can only guess the people who make them depend on someone else to fix them.

Definitely a lost art.

(Don't get me started about not raking the bunkers.....)

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On 10/8/2017 at 10:09 PM, iacas said:

Ha ha ha ha. :-) If only that were true! :-D

And FWIW I've seen plenty of pros repair ball marks improperly - theirs, on their line, doesn't matter. Most repair them by popping.

Repairing them properly takes a little more time than just a single pop.

Yep. When I get done fixing a ball mark I like to leave the green looking like a ball mark had never been made.

On 10/9/2017 at 10:34 AM, colin007 said:

 

 

They show pros improperly fixing pitch marks every single broadcast. People imitate what they see.

So true! Including how slowly they play! Oops! OT!

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On 10/6/2017 at 1:50 PM, rehmwa said:

It's such a problem at some courses around here that I'm jsut grateful to those that make the attempt.  Doing it in the effective manner is a bonus.

We have a local course where the club decided to make a point to their members and on the first green they planted a little flag by every ball mark (and a sign explaining that people have not been repairing marks.

It looked like the freakin' United Nations on that green.

The result?  member just removed the flags that were in the way of their putts.  No one really repaired any marks........sigh

(it's a very nice layout and would be a fantastic course.  Other than this issue, the rest of the course is pristine.)

I saw similar issues with an Arnold Palmer signature course in Iowa.  The members clearly had no clue just what a gem they had in that course - at least in terms of how they took care of their own greens.  The staff there was amazing, but they can do only so much.

Given time and pace of play, I'll usually repair/rerepair quite a few marks on greens if I can.  (it's not that I care, I'm just OCD)

Here's my idea. Give a kid, maybe a member of the local HS golf team, a ball mark repair tool, teach him how to use it, and a cart. Send him out after the last group of the day to fix every unrepaired ball mark on the course. Give him a tally sheet and pay him a nickle or dime a ball mark, or something. Or offer him free golf.

A kid who's conscientious could rake in a double sawbuck a day! Over a hundy a week? That's big money in HS! Well, unless their parents are rich!

Edited by Buckeyebowman

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On 10/9/2017 at 10:46 AM, Lihu said:

So, I did this yesterday. I'm hoping that the grass will grow back.

The holes I leave seem to be a lot larger than those shown in the video. They're about the ball width or wider in the direction it landed, like an ellipse. I needed to gently shove and didn't lift the grass from an inch in each direction inward. This leaves almost a 2" area of "loose grass" in the area of my repairs.

Pretty much all of the grass varieties used on greens in the US are "creepers."  The grass will fill in those loose areas pretty quickly, since each little open area is small, leaving relatively short distances for the roots to expand into.  If done the wrong way, there might be an inch or more of bare soil, and that's a long way for the roots to fill in.  

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I still need to get one of those sharp, pointy repair tools. Right now I'm using one with fat, rounded tines from a souvenir repair tool. Maybe I'll just take a grinder to it and modify it.

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