USGA "Gutless" For Not Banning Long Putters
By mustang6560 on 9/14/11
I don't know who Vinny Giles is, but I like his moxie.

After losing in the second round of the USGA Senior Amateur yesterday, the storied amateur called the USGA "gutless" for not taking a stand against long and belly putters.
“Why they’re so gutless, I don’t know. I want them to just say, ‘OK, we make the rules.’ If the PGA Tour wants to say, ‘We’re not gonna play by 'em, we’re going to bifurcation,’ fine, let 'em go.

“But we, as the USGA, should definitely outlaw those putters. There’s no issue, as far as I’m concerned. Nerves are part of the game. Crutches aren’t, and these putters are crutches.

“And that’s coming from somebody who uses one. It’s a lot easier for somebody who doesn’t use one to make that comment. I’m 100 percent in favor of a ban of them.”
So a man who uses a long putter is calling for the USGA to ban the use of long putters - interesting. Vinny is not the next Tiger Woods or anything, but his opinion should count for something. He is only one of two players in the history of golf to win both the U.S. Amateur and the U.S. Senior Amateur. He also played on four Walker Cup teams and was a captain for one of them. So in terms of playing experience, he has more knowledge than most of us.

I'm not sure how much longer we're going to have to wait for the USGA and/or R&A to make a ruling on the legality of long and belly putters. It seems pretty clear cut to me. The length of the putter is not the issue. It's the hinging and balancing part against the body that is the point of contention. Yes, you still have to be able to read the green and get the speed right, but you shouldn't be able to stabilize the stroke by hinging the end of your putter against your body.

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photo via GolfWeek

[ comments ]
lindsaya says:
What if your belly touches a 35" putter?
steve marsh says:
then you should go on a diet
Reslie says:
Bu-dum-da! Cute.

But seriously folks, I think I have agree with Mr. Giles. Using the body to stabilize the putter is no different in my mind than using square groves on irons to increase spin or the using the trampoline effect on the face of the driver to increase distance. The USGA and the R&A had the stones to kill off those improvements. There are just some technological improvements that go to far.
bigdrivegolf says:
Steve J. says:
Seriously, what if I anchor a 35 inch putter to my belly. I am 5 foot 9 inches tall, I have a 32 inch waist, and I can anchor a 35 inch putter comfortably to my belly. I think that if they make a decision on the legality of the belly or broom stick putter, it should be made solely on the anchoring of the club to the body, not the length of the club.
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