Posted By LambChop
Royal & Ancient Club and U.S. Golf Association proposed to restrict the use of “belly putters,” specifically prohibiting “anchoring” the putter at chest, middle section or belly. Anchoring the putter at the mid section is thought to give an unfair advantage in that it reduces errant swings caused by nerves (“the yips”) and assists in a smoother pendulum putting stroke.
The proposed ruling allows for use of extended putters as long as the swing is free (away from body) and those who broke the rule would be subject to a two-shot penalty in strokeplay or the loss of a hole in matchplay.
Interesting that the rule change comes at the height of popularity of the method of putting with 15% of professionals using belly putters and three of the past five majors have been won by players using long putters.
"You've got some guys who have been using this style of putter for almost 20 years so it's a little bit of a scary position that they're in" - Keegan Bradley US PGA champ
"To change something that drastic, it needs to be based off facts and not what certain people think the tradition of the game looks like" - Webb Simpson US Open winner
"We swing all 13 other clubs. I think the putter should be the same" - Tiger Woods
" The fact is, if somebody invented the belly putter tomorrow, it would not pass. There's no way they would let it through " - Padraig Harrington