Anchor's away: Ban on fulcrum-style putting stroke becomes effective in 2016

Over the last year, the PGA of America and the United States Golf Association have been pushing its "Tee it Forward" initiative in which it asks golfers to play from tee boxes that best suit their abilities and driving distance. It's an attempt to grow the game, speed up play, and with hope, increase a golfer's enjoyment.

So why is the USGA – and the R&A, golf's rules-keepers – effectively stealing away some of golf's enjoyment? Read on... .



For decades, the rules of golf have fallen under the aegis of the USGA and the R&A. A few months ago, those two organizations, in unison, proposed a ban on anchoring a putter to one's body. Comment was invited over a 90-day period following the proposed rules change, and most professional tours endorsed the rule change. However, golf's largest professional tour, the PGA Tour, disagreed with the proposal. It seems the USGA and R&A had their minds made up, though, and Rule 14-1b was added to the rules of golf, effective Jan. 1, 2016.

You can read the USGA's explanation of its decision on a number of websites. To me, it's a bunch of hooey and a knee-jerk reaction to the recent trend of major champions who used an anchored putting stroke.

Since 2011, four of the 10 major championship winners have used some sort of anchored putting stroke. None of those – Keegan Bradley, Ernie Els, Adam Scott, and Webb Simpson – have ranked among the top 20 in putting statistics in any of those years.


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