The UK Rules
'Follow the Regulations'
Terminology

Golfing Terminology

'In Terms of Golf: x'

GOLF TERMINOLOGIES: A concise list of terminologies in golfing. You will find 100s of golf terms and definitions used by golfers and officials, all listed from A to Z.

Golfers and competition referees can use this vocabulary of golf terminology. The titles and common match rulings will also help spectators and sports fans.

The official golf rules and regulations is a good place to start if you are learning to play. These golfing key words cover the advanced lingo and sports terms related to the game.

Shoot through to the most common golfing terminology by clicking the alphabetic facility below. Or, take a timeout and sharpen your knowledge and understanding of the game.

This comprehensive list of golfing terms and definitions continues to grow. Check in often for more information associated to golf playing techniques and match-winning strategies. Click the image below to follow The UK Rules on Facebook.

GOLFING TERMS: A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

A - Aiming

Aiming is the action of aligning the clubface in relation to the intended target.

Albatross

An albatross or double eagle is shooting three strokes less than par on any hole.

Alignment

Alignment is a term which describes your positional set up before you strike the ball

Consistently straight-hitting golfers align the position of their body and club face to the intended target so aligning your stance and setup is important before every shot.

Angle of Approach

As the club head speeds towards the ball the angle of approach - sometimes called angle of attack – refers to the angle of the golf club in relation to the ball at the moment of impact.

Typically, the angle of approach affects the distance traveled by the ball and its trajectory.

Approach

In simple golfing terms an approach is a shot as it is hit into the green. The approach does not always reach the green but it describes your intentions for executing the stroke.

Axis

Golfing gurus often refer to the axis of a golf swing. Generally, they are explaining how the spine should remain as a relatively straight line allowing upper body to rotate around it.

B - Backswing

A golfer’s backswing is the movement of the club as he takes it backwards from the ball. It is the initial part of the swing and as a rule ends when the shaft of the golf club sets in position as it reaches a point parallel to the ground.

Backspin

The rotational or spinning movement of the ball describes the term backspin. Backspin is created when you strike the ball with the clubface. By and large, it flies higher and stops quicker - often spinning backwards as it lands on the turf - when you apply more backspin.

Balance

Balance is referred to as even distribution of body weight throughout the whole swing. Proper balancing actually begins during the setup addressing the ball and does not end until you have completed the swing.

Balata

Nowadays, almost all professional golfers use balata-covered balls. Balata is a rubbery substance which is coated or blended on to the surface of golf balls. The main advantage of playing with synthetic balata golf balls is the softer feel and increased spin.

Baseball Grip

There are several ways to fix your grip on the club but the baseball grip describes how some players (mostly amateurs) apply all ten fingers - one hand directly below the other - on to the top of the shaft.

Birdie

Scoring one under par for the hole is termed birdie. For example, a birdie is shooting a score of 4 on a par 5 hole.

Bladed Shot

A bladed shot results in a low-running shot with very little control over the ball’s direction or flight. Hitting the top half of the ball with the lower edge of the blade with an iron produces what is known as a bladed or skulled shot.

Block

A blocked shot rarely ends in a good result. The rotation of the forearms needs space to turn over through the hitting area and a block occurs when a normal rotation is delayed or prevented.

Bobbing

Bobbing is directly linked to inconsistent ball striking. Bobbing means you are altering the swing center (raising or lowering) during the swing action.

Bogey

Shooting one over par on a hole is classified as a bogey. For example a score of 5 on a par 4 is a bogey.

Borrow

Borrow describes the amount of break needed when hitting a breaking putt on a sloping green.

Bowed

A bowed wrist at the top of the backswing means the position is bent slightly inward ahead of the downswing.

Break

A good putter knows how to read breaks on the greens. Break refers to the curved rolling or sideways movement of the ball during the putt. The wind, grain of the grass, and slope of the land all influence how the ball will break.

Bump and Run

A bump and run is golfing jargon which mostly describes a pitch shot around the green. Players sometimes choose to hit the ball into a slope which deadens its speed. The result is usually an approach which settles on the green and rolls towards the hole.

Bunker

Perhaps one of golf’s most recognised and commonly used words in any glossary of terminology. A bunker is basically an obstacle which is almost always filled with sand. A sandy hollowed bunker can be a small trap for the players or it can be large and deep enough to obscure the player’s view. As a rule, bunkers are placed around the greens and mid-way along the fairways.

C - Caddie

Using the assistance of a caddie often saves you several strokes per round because they know the course better than almost anyone. Golf caddies are experts hired to carry your clubs and provide you with inside knowledge and tips.

Calcutta

Calcutta refers to a golfing tournament auction where people would make a gambling bid on an individual player or a team.

Cambered Sole

A golf club with a cambered sole helps to reduce drag especially through long snagging grass. For example modern 5-woods typically have a four-way cambered rounding of the sole on every edge to help the club face slide through the rough.

Carry

The word 'carry' relates to the distance that a golf ball travels in the air. Golfers might use the term carry or carrying to determine how far they must hit it to clear a hazard such as water or a waste area.

Carryover

Carryover simply means moving a tied match to the next hole to try and determine the winner.

Casting

Swinging at the ball, rather than hitting through it, is described as hitting early from the top or 'casting', which results in a loss of control and ultimately power. Basically it happens when your wrists uncock prematurely on the downswing.

Cavity-back

Cavity-back irons have a hollowed section at the back of the club-head resulting in the weight distribution focusing towards the outer edges of the club head.

Center of Gravity

A player’s center of gravity refers to the pelvic area of the body where body weight and mass are equally balanced. Therefore short golfers have a lower center of gravity than taller players.

Centrifugal Force

Centrifugal force describes the action or force created when a rotating body moves mass away from the center. The downswing pulls the club head downwards and outwards typically taking a circular path towards the ball.

Center of Rotation

In terms of golfing the center of rotation is the axis - often called the swing center - which the body turns around and then unwinds around, during the swing. A stable and consistent center of rotation promotes solid ball striking.

Chicken Wing

The golfing phrase chicken wing refers to a swing flaw. A blocked shot often results when the lead elbow bends at an awkward angle away from the body and looks similar to a chicken wing.

Chip and Run

The chip and run is also termed the bump and run, or pitch and run shot. It is a low-running approach shot played commonly with a mid or short iron around the greens where the ball travels along the ground more than in the air.

Choke

The keyword choke describes a somewhat nervous player and whose game suffers because of it.

Choke Down

Lowering your grip on the shaft is generally considered to provide greater control. This technique is known as choking down.

Chunk

A chunk describes a poor shot. Chunks are typically caused by hitting the turf too far behind the ball. A chunk usually results in a fat shot landing considerably short of the intended target.

Cleek

Although not a commonly used club the cleek is a fairway wood with similar loft to a 4-wood. A cleek generally gives you a high soft-landing shot and as a rule used from the fairway.

Closed Clubface

During the setup or at impact, basically a closed clubface means the toe is closer than the heel of the club. Essentially it means the clubface is pointing left of the target line. A closed clubface during the swing plane usually results in shots going to the left of the intended target.

Closed Grip

Having a closed grip means both hands are lined up away from the target and they often become a strong or closed grip.

Closed Stance

A closed stance describes a setup where back foot is positioned slightly back from the target line and often results in a draw.

Closed-to-open

Closed-to-open refers to the swing where the club head is in a closed position on the backswing but then moves to an open position during the downswing.

Cocked Wrists

Cocked wrists describe the hinging action during the backswing. Ideally the hands should be fully cocked at the beginning of the downswing and not turned clockwise.

Coefficient of Restitution

Coefficient of restitution refers to the relationship between the speed of the clubhead and the ball’s velocity after the strike.

Coil

Ultimately, power through the hitting area comes from the turning of the body or coil during the backswing.

Come Over the Top

Coming over the top sounds like slang words but it often refers to an outside-to-inside swing path at the beginning of the downswing and continuing from outside the target line.

Compression

The golfing keyword term compression refers to the measurement of hardness of golf balls. Compression ranges from 100 which are considered to be the hardest to the softest at 80.

Connection

Connection is when all the various body parts work harmoniously and fluidly during the swing producing a solid motion.

Conservation of Angular Momentum (COAM)

In simple terms the conservation of angular momentum describes the production of large quantities of kinetic energy which is produced during the golf swing. It is a law of physics which refers primarily to centrifugal force.

Croquet Style

Croquet style describes a putting stance where the player stands at the side of the ball and holds the club with a split grip striking it with a croquet-type stroke. Certain variations of this style have been banned by the United States Golf Association.

Cross-handed

A cross-handed grip means the leading hand is placed below the other hand and considered to be the direct opposite of traditional grips.

Cupped Wrist

A cupped-wrist position refers to the top hand hinging outwards at the top of the backswing.

Cuppy Lie

The phrase cuppy lie means the ball is nestling or sitting down often resting in a small depression.

Cut Shot

A cut shot is usually played with an open clubface with an out to in swing path commonly resulting in a soft fade.

D - Dead Hands

A dead-handed shot could be clarified as one in which the ball flies less distance than normal. Using relatively passive hand action - dead hands - through the hitting area usually produces this result.

Deep-faced Driver

Deep-faced drivers provide you with a large club face particularly with regards to the height and bigger ball striking area.

Decelerate

Decelerating (slowing down) club-head speed through the hitting area is the most common reason why putters leave the ball short of the hole.

Delayed Hit

A delayed hit is golf jargon used to describe the term Conservation of Angular Momentum.

Divot

The expression divot is used a lot in the game of golf. It describes the small slice of turf which is displaced after a shot or it can mean the hole which is left after the grass is chopped out by the descending club.

Double Bogey

A double bogey is shooting a score of two over par on any hole. For example taking five strokes on a par three is a double bogey.

Dormie

Dormie is a term used mostly in match play golf. It signifies that a player is ahead in a match and by the same number of holes that remain in the game.

Doubles

The keyword doubles is used for a caddie who carries two sets of golf clubs.

Downswing

The downswing begins from the top of the backswing and then accelerates forward through the hitting area. It is also called the forward swing.

Draw

A draw in gold is similar to that in tennis. The draw shot flies in a slight and controlled curve from right to left for a right-handed player.

Duck Hook

You could classify the duck hook shot as an unintentional or out of control draw. Duck hooks typically fly sharply from right to left for a right-handed player.

Dynamic Balance

Dynamic balance refers to the transference of weight appropriately and maintaining full body control throughout the golf swing.

E - Eagle

Eagles are huge scores in golf. An eagle is shooting two-under-par on a hole. For example taking 3 stokes on a par 5 is an eagle.

Effective Loft

The term effective loft differentiates between the standard loft built into the club and the actual loft on a club at impact created by your stance, hand position, and the lie of the ball.

Explosion

An explosion shot is largely played from a sand bunker especially when the ball has buried or settled down below the surface.

Extension

Extension is the measurement or width of the swing determined by the target arm on the backswing and the trail arm on the follow-through.

F - Fade

Hitting a fade means the flight of your ball is predominantly curving and slightly from left to right.

Fanning

In golfing terminology fanning means that as the backswing begins you have an exaggerated opening of the clubface.

Fat Shot

A fat shot is descriptive jargon of a shot that often lands short of the target. Fat shots result when the club head strikes the turf a short distance behind the ball.

Flange

The bottom edge or sole section of a wedge or putter is called a flange.

Flat Swing

A player with a horizontal swing plane (less vertical) is said to have a flat swing often resulting in a hook.

Flier

The golf ball often reacts differently when it is struck from the rough or in wet conditions. As a rule these hazards reduce the amount of backspin causing it to fly lower and dubbed a flier.

Flip Shot

A flip shot is played with a wedge as a rule and refers to shot using a lot of wrist action to flip the ball high but only a short distance forward. Flip shots are played most often when you need to avoid landing in a nearby hazard such as water or a bunker.

Floater

A floater is a term used for ball which comes slowly of the club and travels a short distance.

Flop Shot

A flop shot is almost the same as a flip shot except that it usually played with a longer and slower swing.

Fluffy Lie

A ball in a fluffy lie commonly means it is resting on the top of longish grass.

Fly

Fly is the distance that you can carry the ball in the air.

Follow-through

The follow-through is the part of the swing which takes place after the club head impacts the ball.

Footwork

In golfing terms footwork simply refers to the coordinated action of the legs and feet during the swing.

Forward Press

Many players initiate the swing by making a slight forward press movement of the hands and arms to relive tension in the grip.

Fried Egg

A fried egg is golfing jargon and a term which describes the ball when it is in a buried lie in sand.

G - Golf Range

Golfing ranges or driving ranges are very popular in areas where golfers are unable to play or perhaps in the winter time when access is limited to the normal course. A golf or driving range is a practice facility where people can try to improve their swing and short game.

Grain

The grain refers to the direction which the grass blades grow. Most championship greens use Bermuda grass and being able to read the break of a putt and how the grain affects the ball’s movement is a pro golfer’s prime focus for winning tournaments.

Grand Slam

Winning the four professional Major Championships in one calendar year is defined as achieving golfing’s Modern Grand Slam. The four Grand Slams are;

Greenkeeper

Many years ago the term used for a course superintendent was a greenkeeper.

Greens in Regulation

In golfing terminology, 'greens in regulation' is a percentage statistic. It refers to the number of times a player successfully hits his ball onto the green or putting surface taking two shots fewer than the par for the hole.

Grip

The grip is fixed at the top of the shaft and it is where you place your hands to hold the club. Additionally, placing and positioning your hands on the club is called gripping the club. The various types of grip include;

Groove

Grooves are horizontal scoring lines which are found on the face of the club. Each groove helps to impart spin on the golf ball. In the grove also describes a consistent golf swing following the same path, repeatedly.

Ground

The Rules of Golf prohibit touching the ground or water with the club prior to playing the shot from a hazard.

Group Lesson

Group lessons are traditionally a teaching session for several pupils working with PGA Professionals and particularly effective for beginners and juniors.

H - Half Shot

Half shots are played most often when trying to keep the ball low and out of a strong wind using an abbreviated swing and reduced swing speed.

Heel

The heel is the part of the clubhead which is nearest to the hosel. A heeled shot refers to one hit off the heel.

Heel and Toe Weighted

A heel and toe weighted club means the weight is distributed further towards the toe and heel of the club. Heel and toe weighting is usually designed for irons and the purpose is to reduce the effect of mis-hits.

High Side

The high side of the hole refers to the area which a putt will break from.

Hitter

If your title is a hitter it describes you as a player who favors an aggressive, perhaps even forceful, style of swing.

Hooding

Hooding tends to reduce the effective loft of the club and performed by placing your hands ahead of the ball at address and more importantly, at impact.

Hook

The dreaded hook is not a golfing terms we like to use too often unless it is a controlled hook. A hooked shot curves sharply and mostly from right to left if you are a right-handed player.

Hosel

The hosel connects the shaft to the clubhead.

I - Impact

In golfing phraseology the word impact refers to the exact moment during the swing when the club head strikes the back of the ball.

Inside-to-in

As a golfing rule of thumb, a swing path with an inside-to-in will produce the highest percentage of solid shots on target. The reason is that inside-to-in describes the path of the clubhead traveling from inside the target line, through the impact zone, and then returning back to a path inside the same target line. Conversely, a swing path which travels outside the target line at impact is called inside-to-out.

Intended Line of Flight

The keywords intended line of flight refers to the general direction that you plan the ball to fly following impact.

Iron Byron

The Iron Byron is a ball and club testing device which was modeled on the swing of Byron Nelson.

J - Jumpers

Golf jumpers and sweaters are a staple in the sport so it is important to wear something that compliments your game while you stay comfortable.

K - Kinesiology

Kinesiology is a term used to describe the scientific study of movement; i.e. human kinetics or human movement. The relationship of kinesiology in golf is the implementation of equipment that he might use in such forms of physical activity.

Kinetic Energy

Kinetic energy is associated with the speed of a golf ball and therefore the distance traveled. The equation for kinetic energy is the same as mass multiplied by the velocity squared.

Knitwear

Mens Golf Knitwear - House of Fraser stocks a huge selection of stylish and comfortable men's golf knitwear.

L - Lag

Lag refers to a shot that is meant to finish a little short of its intended target. Lagging the ball close to the hole from a chip shot, pitch, or a putt is used particularly when there is potential danger passed the hole if you overshoot the mark.

Lateral Slide

A lateral slide or shift is a movement occurring early in the forward swing. It is a crucial moment when the timing of a small hip slide and transference of weight towards the target completes the downswing.

Lay Off

The club sometimes 'lays off' or flattens at the top of the back swing causing it to close and point to the side of the target.

Learning Center

Learning centers for golfer are usually a complete instruction facility often with opportunities for practicing and usually on the same site as a golf course.

Level-par

Level-par is a golfing term which describes a score of even par.

Lever System

The lever system refers to the skeletal system used in the golf swing. It is composed of numerous bones which act as levers when the target wrist becomes cocked.

Lie

In golf lie relates to either where the ball is resting or the angle of the sole of the club in relation to the shaft.

Lights-out

In golfing terminology lights-out is a slang phrase describing an outstanding stretch of holes or entire round of golf.

Line

Line refers to the intended path for the ball and most often referred to in the context of putting.

Line of Flight

Having lined up the intended path for the ball the line of flight is its actual trajectory and distance travelled.

Links

Links or linksland is land reclaimed from the ocean and is the term for this unique type of golf course.

Lob Shot

A lob shot is high shot which does not usually travel much distance forward. Lobs are usually played with a wedge and they are designed to land softly.

Loft

The loft of a clubface is the angle expressed in degrees. The club with the least loft is a putter and the most loft is found on a sand wedge.

Long Irons

The long irons start with a 1 iron and move through the bag to the number 4 iron.

Looking Up

When novice golfers prematurely lift their head to follow the flight of the ball it is termed looking up and creates a raised swing center. This activity also raises the swing center resulting in erratic ball-striking.

Loop

Loop refers to a round of golf but more commonly it describes the shape of the swing when the backswing and forward swing are in different planes.

Loosened Grip

A loosened grip or 'playing the flute' occurs when a player opens his fingers and loses control of the club by and large at the top of the backswing.

M - Mechanics

The integral attributes of the golf swing or a putting stoke are referred to as the mechanics of the activity.

Mid-irons

The middle irons or mid-irons refer to the 5, 6, and 7 iron.

Mulligan

According to the Royal and Ancient Rules of Professional Golf mulligans are not allowed. Nonetheless, in a non-professional game a mulligan is a slang word for playing a second shot customarily off the first tee without a penalty.

N - Nassau

Nassau is largely a betting competition. When playing Nassau in golf, points are awarded for winning either the front nine holes, the back nine holes, and the overall eighteen hole competition.

O - Off-green Putting

It is common to see beginners and players with a weak chipping game to putt from off the green to the flag. Off-green putting is often a safer chance of keeping the score down if you lack confidence in your overall short game.

Offset

Offset is a measurement of distance between the hosel and the leading edge of the clubface.

One-piece Takeaway

One-piece takeaway describes the initiation of the backswing as the hands, arms, and wrists all move away from the ball in unison.

Open Clubface

When the clubface is open it points to the side of the target often resulting in a slice shot.

Open Grip

An open grip or weak grip occurs when the hands are turned counter-clockwise on the club.

Open Stance

Pulling the lead foot back farther from the target line than the other foot generally produces and open stance promoting a left-to-right ball flight.

Open-to-closed

Open-to-closed descries the movement of the clubface. It usually happens when a player fans the face open on the backswing and then closes as it reaches impact with the ball.

Outside-to-in

Outside-to-in swing paths travel from outside the target line to the inside of that line following impact.

Overclub

Selecting the wrong club or overclubing by and large for an approach shot causes the ball to go through the green.

P - Pace

Pace describes many aspects of the game. A golfer’s pace could mean their speed of play or a fast swing, whereas the pace of putting typically refers to the speed of the greens.

Paddle Grip

A paddle grip in golf is a grip with a flat surface on the top of the putter where the thumbs rest.

Par

Par is probably the most used word in the complete glossary of terminology. Par refers to the score which an accomplished player is reasonably expected to shoot on a hole and commonly is a par three, par four, or par five.

Path

Observing the swing path of the club head from above shows the direction it travels throughout the swing or the putting stroke.

Pendulum Stroke

A pendulum stroke in putting is one which moves the clubhead without deviating on a constant line back and forth.

Pinch Shot

A pinch shot is one played usually around the green club hits the ball with a crisp, clean descending blow.

Pistol Grip

The pistol grip is used with a putter as a rule built up with one hand directly under the top hand.

Pivot

The golf swing pivots rotationally around a fixed point of the body or more exact, the spine.

Plumb-bob

The plum-bob is a method many used to help line up the amount of break in a putt by holding the putter vertically from behind the ball.

Plugged Lie

A ball in a plugged-lie is a term describing it when it rests in its own pitch mark. Plugged-lies occur mostly in soft turf or inside bunkers.

Press

To press simply means to try and hit the ball harder than usual in an attempt to change or influence the outcome of a match.

Pre-shot Routine

A player’s pre-shot routine refers to the action he takes selecting a club through to the moment he begins the swing.

Private Lesson

A PGA Professional giving a golfing lesson to an individual pupil would be termed as a private lesson.

Pronation

Pronation happens with an inward rotation of the hands towards the centerline of your body.

Pulled Hook

A pulled hook results when a shot, already curving sideways, continues sharply away to the side of the target line.

Pulled Shot

A pulled shot is a relatively straight shot which begins to curve to the side of the target and does not curve back on track.

Pulled Slice

A pulled slice begins well to the side of the target but then begins to curve back towards the initial target line.

Punch Shot

An abbreviated backswing and finish with your hands slightly ahead of the club head often results in a low-flying ball called a punch shot.

Pushed Hook

A pushed hook is a shot that begins to one side of the target but curves back to the target afterwards.

Pushed Shot

A pushed hook becomes a pushed shot if it does not curve back.

Pushed Slice

A pushed slice starts to one side of the target and then curves away even further.

Q - Qualifications

Good coaching is an integral part of the development of any player in any sport and The PGA aims to ensure that all golf coaches involved in growing the game are appropriately trained and qualified to coach at their chosen level.

R - Radius

A concise reference book of golf would describe the radius as the length of a swing arc. The radius of a swing arc is the distance between the point where the hands meet the grip and the player's leading shoulder.

Rap

Using a short firm putting stroke is called a rap or rapping.

Reading the Green

Reading the green or each putt is the entire process of judging the break and the swing path of a putt.

Recover

To recover or play a recovery shot means you have successfully hit a shot from a poor location into a positive outcome.

Release

Feely returning the clubhead squarely back to the object ball at impact means you have perfect release.

Rhythm

The term rhythm describes the coordination of rhythmical movement or harmonious timing during the golf swing or putting stroke.

Road Hole

The famous, or perhaps infamous, road hole is the par-4 17th hole at the Old Course at St. Andrews.

Round Robin

A round robin is a tournament format in which players play against other teams attempting to accumulate the highest number of points.

S - Sand Wedge

The sand wedge is considered to be a golfing scoring club or often called a specialty club.

Scoring Clubs

The classification of scoring clubs for the vast majority of golfers would have to include the driver, the wedges, and the putter.

Scramble

The golfing term scramble is used to describe a recovery shot from trouble and a popular form of team play. Scramble is a format where team members pick the ball in the best position and the shot is then played from that spot.

Setup

In golf the setup is the process of addressing the ball. Ideally the club and golfer’s body are properly aimed and aligned at the moment of setup.

Shank

A shank often causes the ball to shoot low and to the right if it is struck on the hosel of the club.

Shape

Shaping a shot to fit the situation is a term in golf and shape also describes the flight of the ball.

Short Game

Golf’s short game is a term used to describe shots played on the green or from close by. Putting, pitching, chipping, and playing bunker shots are all part of a golfer’s short game.

Short Irons

Typically, the short irons are the 8 and 9 irons and you could also include the pitching wedge.

Shut

When the clubface is in a closed position relative to the target line it is referred to as shut.

Sky

A pop-up shot or sky shot occurs mostly when the clubhead strikes the underside of the ball.

Slice

A slice refers to the ball when curves from left to right to with a greater degree of curve than a fade.

Smothered Hook

Striking the ball with an extremely closed clubface produces a right to left shot with a low trajectory diving quickly to the ground and is called a smothered hook.

Sole

The sole refers to a part of golfing equipment. It is the bottom edge of a golf club.

Sole-weighted

Sole-weighted clubs are designed to incorporate additional weighting along the sole of the club and usually applied to fairway woods. Sole-weighting usually makes it easier to get the ball high and especially effective from the rough.

Splash Shot

The splash shot is played from a good lie in the bunker high in the air as a rule.

Spoon

A spoon is an older term for a 3-wood which is rarely used in the modern game.

Spot

Spotting means the same as marking the ball so it can be lifted.

Spot Putting

Spot putting is a technique of using an intermediate target as a means of aiming a putt. It would usually be an old ball or pitch mark on the green or perhaps a discolored blade of grass.

Square

Being square is a common term in golf. Square is used to describe a golfer’s stance at moment of setup, the position of the clubface, its contact with the ball, or the status of a match.

Stance

Stance usually refers to the player’s position of their feet at address in relationship to the ball and the target line.

Straight-faced

A straight-faced club has very little loft. It lacks the standard bulge and roll and would normally refer to a driver or the long irons.

Stroke Play

Stroke play is also called medal play in professional golf. It is a competition format played over one or several rounds and based on the cumulative number of strokes taken during the match.

Strong Grip

Turning the hands counter-clockwise on the grip usually produces a strong grip which is not related to the amount of pressure applied to the club.

Swaying

Swaying often causes inconsistent shot-making because of an exaggerated lateral or sideways movement of the body during the swing.

Sweet Spot

Hitting the sweet spot on the clubface means that the ball is struck at a position which will not torque or twist the clubface to either side.

Swing Arc

The entire width and length of the clubhead during the golf swing is termed the swing arc and the path would be called the swing plane.

Swinger

A swinger is described as a player whose swing is based on rhythm and perfect timing rather than sheer power.

Swingweight Scale

A swingweight scale is a device for measuring the swingweight or effective weight of a golf club.

T - Takeaway

The takeaway initiates the club movement at the beginning of the backswing. A slow takeaway sets the tempo for a rhythmical swing.

Target Line

Top players visualize an imaginary line drawn from behind the ball to a short distance after the ball. The technique of using a target line nearby is to line up the ball in the foreground to the point that you are aiming in the distance.

Tee Box

A tee box is the area where each hole begins. Tee boxes are usually only a few square meters of short cut grass but it is where you tee up the ball to start the hole.

Tempo

Tempo is recognised as an important part of playing the game consistently well. Tempo refers to the speed or rhythm of the swing. It is often confused with club-head speed which does not necessarily produce the same result.

Texas Wedge

The phrase Texas wedge signifies a shot played with a putter and struck from a considerable distance off the green. By and large the shot is played by beginners instead of risking a chip or pitch.

Three-quarter Shot

Playing a stroke with a shorter backswing and less arm speed is called a three-quarter shot.

Tier

A tier on the glossary of golf describes the rise or raised level on a green or at the teeing area.

Timing

Timing refers to the sequence of actions or the motions applied throughout the golf swing.

Toed Shot

A toed shot is one where the toe of the club strikes the ball and not the sweet spot.

Topped Shot

Topping the shot is common while you are learning to play. A topped shot means the bottom of the club struck the ball and usually results in a low bouncing shot.

Touch

Touch refers to a player's sense of feel. It generally describes the prowess of professionals around the greens.

Trajectory

The trajectory of the golf ball refers to the height and angle that it travels through the air.

Transition

The change of direction in the swing is called the transition and means the change from the backswing to the forward swing.

U - Uncock

If you uncock your wrists too early in the downswing it can result in a loss of power. Uncocking means straightening the wrists and the fault usually happens soon after the top of the backswing.

Upright

Playing with an upright swing plane (steeper-than-normal) generally refers to a club's lie at the setup. Upright indicates that the shaft is placed at a steeper-than-standard angle and usually refers to the irons.

V - Vector

Vector is rarely explained in a golfing treasury of words but it determines distance traveled and direction. It simply refers to a measurement which is related to a force which has magnitude and direction.

Visualization

Visualization is a mental technique used by most professionals and golf teachers. Try to visualize a positive mental image of each shot or the entire round and it can dramatically improve your performance.

W - Waggle

A few waggles of the golf club immediately before takeaway often reduces tension. Waggling is a slow and deliberate motion that tends to establish a relaxed and smooth pace during the execution of the swing.

Weak Grip

Most right-handed players fade the ball from left to right if they have a weak grip. Having a weak grip means the hands are turned slightly out of position as you set up the club face.

Whiff

A whiff is similar to the slang phrase hitting an air ball. If you whiffed your shot – usually with the driver – it means you completely missed the shot and did not make contact with the ball.

X - Xtreme

Golf Xtreme is an adapted, fun, easy to use, and exciting version of the golf game which is designed with those 11 to 15 years in mind.

Y - Yips

Suffering from the dreaded yips is perhaps a golfer’s worst nightmare.

Yips are similar to a nervous twitch which is believed to be a psychological affliction, causing a player to lose control of his hands and golf club – largely the putter.

Z - Zip Tops

Stylish zipped sweater tops for men and women golfers are ideal for training, running, cycling or wearing it casually.

Golf Terminologies iconWe listen to your comments and appreciate your support. If you found the golf terminology useful please like and share this page on Facebook. Did we miss any golfing terms or definitions?

Golf Terminologies; UK Rules Updated 2017