Letter P - Golf Definitions, Terms, Vocabulary and Slang
The speed at which a putt must be struck to get to the hole. Pace and break are the two components of green-reading.
The standard score for a hole, usually based on it's length. Holes up to 250 yards (228m) long are par 3's, up to 475 yards (434m) par 4's and any longer than that are par 5's. Course committees are now authorized to vary par when a hole's difficulty warrants not sticking rigidly to the distances laid down.
Par 3 Course (Par Three Course)
A short golf course comprised of all par 3 holes. Par 3 courses are good learning courses for beginners and help better players to improve their short games.
A player who is teamed with another player on the same side of a match.
The imaginary line formed by the arc of a player's swing. (See "Square", "Inside-Out" and "Outside-In".)
Peer review is the process of providing a reasonable and regular opportunity for members of a golf club to play golf with each other, and providing access to scoring records and USGA Handicap Indexes for inspection by fellow members and the club's Handicap Committee.
Redistributing weight on a club head to the heel and toe in an attempt to stabilize the club on all types of impacts.
Stroke(s) assessed when a ball is hit into a specific area either on (water hazard) or off (out of bounds) the course. Penalties may also be assessed for specific violations as defined in the United States Golf Association's Rules of Golf.
A "penalty score" is a score posted by the Handicap Committee for a player who does not return a score or otherwise does not observe the spirit of the USGA Handicap System.
Professional Golfer's Association. Governing organization of males making their living in golf-related endeavors. The PGA issues guidelines and accreditation to its members depending upon their individual positions in the game.
PGA & LPGA Tour
Golf organizations for male and female professional golfers respectively, that are responsible for the management of a series of events throughout the world in which members play for monetary remuneration.
An easy mark—the golfer that everybody wants to play against. If you hear anyone refer to you as a pigeon, take up chess.
Also called the flagstick, flag, or stick, the pin marks the hole.
Whenever the ball lies at the same elevation as the hole.
A shot that heads right for the flagstick from the moment it leaves the clubface.
A reasonably high shot onto the green, traveling anything from a few yards to 120 yards (110m). You generally use a 9 iron, a pitching wedge, or a sand wedge.
Another term for a divot (ball mark) on the green caused when a ball lands
Slang term for a "shanked" shot. That is, a ball struck on the hosel of the head resulting in a straight right ball flight.
Pitch and putt
A derisive term given to golf courses that are short and easily conquered, so named because just a pitch and a putt will get you into the hole.
The name of a golf club that was used in the mid-late 1800's through the early part of the 20th century that was an iron club with a loft of about 45 degrees.
A short iron with a large degree of loft, used for pitching high but short shots onto the green.
The name of a club used throughout the 1800's and into the early part of the 20th century that was the longest hitting wooden club (today's one wood). It had a long nosed head usually made of Beechwood, sometimes weighted in the back, with rams horn at the front of the sole. It was used with the feathery ball.
Play 'em down
To play the ball as it lies.
A situation in which a faster group is permitted to play a hole on which a slower group is playing. The slower group typically stands out of the way of the faster group, who is said to have "played through."
Playoff (Play off)
In the event of a tie at the end of any competition, continuing play to determine the winner. The playoff may be sudden death, a specified number of holes or an entire 18-hole round.
A bad lie (typically in a bunker) where the ball is at least half-buried in sand. Also known as a "buried lie" or a "fried egg".
A golf handicap index of below zero (0).
A person with a handicap index of less than zero (0). A plus handicapper must add his handicap to his score
A poor tee shot where the top of the clubhead strikes under the ball, causing it to go straight up in the air. In addition to being bad shots, pop-ups frequently leave white scuff-marks on the top of the clubhead, or dents in persimmon clubs. Also known as "sky shots".
A small, but very deep bunker, usually filled with sand.
A shot, generally from the tee, that combines the control of a left to right fade with the power and distance of a pull. A highly effective shot that is difficult to master. The preferred pattern of Ben Hogan and others.
Local rule that may be adopted by the committee in charge of the competition or the committee in charge of the course, in the event of adverse conditions that are so general throughout a course that improving the lie of the ball in a specified way would promote fair play or help protect the course.
The name of a golf club that was used in the mid-late 1800's through the early part of the 20th century that was an iron with a whole in the middle to hit balls out of water. It has about 43 degrees of lolf.
Type of course requiring a membership to play. Guests may play private courses for a fee at specific times, often accompanied by a member of the club
Professional Golfer (Pro)
An individual who earns a living based upon his or her skill at playing the game. May work as a touring pro in professional competitions, or as a teaching pro (also called a club pro).
Longer irons are fitted with more flexible shafts to promote feel and aid in getting the ball airborne and shorter irons utilize stiffer shafts for added control.
Iron sets with longer irons having more offset and shorter irons having less.
A ball that is played, usually in an effort to speed up play, as a potential replacement for a ball that may be lost or out of bounds. For example, a player hits his ball toward an out of bounds area, but is not sure the ball is out of bounds. He states the intention to hit a provisional (so he does not have to take time to return to the position from where he hit the original shot) in case the ball is out of bounds. If the original is out of bounds, the provisional becomes the ball in play, with penalty strokes added.
A course open to play for all golfers, subject to time availability.
A shot that tends to go to the left of the intended target, in a straight path (assuming a right-handed player.) A pulled does not curve, but flies straight.
A shot, played intentionally low, to avoid wind, trees or other obstacles. The shot is played with a short backswing with the ball positioned rearward in the stance.
Punch-Out or Punch Shot
A shot played with a very low trajectory, usually to avoid interference from tree branches when a player is hitting from the woods. Similar to the knock-down, it can also be used to avoid high winds.
A shot that tends to go to the right of the intended target, in a straight path (assuming a right-handed player.) A pushed does not curve, but flies straight.
The rolling shot taken on the green, with a putter.
The percentage statistic of how many putts per green (hit in regulation) divided by how many holes played in a round, tournament or carreer.
The name of the putter in the mid-late 1800's through the early part of the 20th century.
The area of the hole being played that is specifically mowed for putting.
The term "Putting Green" may also refer to a practice putting area, usually near the clubhouse.