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TAKEAWAY - The start of the backswing.
TAP IN - An exceedingly short putt that is nearly impossible to miss if trying.
TARGET LINE - An imaginary (often visualized) line drawn behind and through the ball to the point a player is aiming. If the player is planning to curve the ball, this point is the initial – not the ultimate – target.
TEE - A disposable device, normally a wooden peg, on which the ball is placed for driving. Also refers to the area from which the ball is hit on the first shot of the hole. Originally a pile of sand used to elevate the ball for driving.
TEE BOX - The area where players tee off to start a hole.
TEE OFF - To play a tee shot.
TEE TIME - A "tee time" is the time your group is assigned to begin play. This is the time the group should be on the tee ready to play rather than the time you should arrive at the golf course.
TEE UP - To begin play by placing the ball on the tee.
TEE-SHOT - A shot played from a tee.
TEEING GROUND - The area in which you must tee off your ball. Ball must be teed off within the markers and no more than two club lengths behind them.
TEMPO - The speed of the swing (not necessarily the clubhead speed.)
TEMPORARY GREEN - A green used in the winter to save the permanent green.
TEXAS WEDGE - What the putter is called when it used from off the green. Also a shot played with a putter from outside the putting green.
THIN - The ball is hit thin when it is hit above center with the clubhead traveling on too high a line.
THREAD - To direct the ball through a narrow opening.
THREE BALL - Three players playing against each other with each playing their own ball.
THREE-IRON - An iron club used for distances between 165-200 yards for men's clubs. Also called a mid-mashie.
THREE-PUTT - To take three putts on a green.
THREE-QUARTER SHOT - Less than a full shot. A shot made with a reduced swing.
THREESOME - A match in which two players play the same ball and alternate strokes and play against a single player. Also means three players playing a round together.
THREE-WOOD - A wood club used for distances between 210-250 yards for men's clubs. Also known as a spoon.
TIER - A rise or level in a green or tee.
TIGER TEE - A slang expression for the back tee.
TIGHT FAIRWAY - A narrow fairway.
TIMING - The sequence of motions within the golf swing.
TOE - The part of the club farthest from where in joins the shaft.
TOED IN - A clubhead having a specialty prominent toe with a slightly turned-in face.
TOED SHOT - Any shot hit off the toe of the club.
TOP - To hit the ball above its center causing it to roll or hop rather than rise.
TOPPED SHOT - A low, bouncing shot caused by the bottom of the club striking the top half of the ball.
TOPSPIN - The forward rotation of the ball in motion.
TOUCH - Accuracy, especially in putting.
TOUCH SHOT - A very delicately hit shot.
TOUR - A series of tournaments for professionals.
TOURNAMENT - A stroke or match play competition. A competition in which a number of golfers compete.
TRACK IRON - An obsolete club that was used primarily to hit the ball from cart tracks. A rut-iron or a niblick.
TRAJECTORY - The flight path of the ball.
TRIPLE BOGEY - This term is used when a golfer is 3 over par on a hole.
TROUBLE SHOT - A shot taken from a bad lie such as behind trees or in bunkers or rough.
TURN - To start the back 9 holes.
UNCOCK - To straighten the wrists in the downswing.
UNDERCLUBBING - Using a club that does not give the needed distance.
UNDERSPIN - Same as backspin.
UNPLAYABLE LIE - A lie in which the ball is impossible to play such as in a thicket of trees.
UP - A shot reaching at least as far as the hole.
UP - A specified number of strokes you are ahead of your opponent in match play.
UP AND DOWN - Getting out of trouble or out of a hazard and into the hole.
UPRIGHT SWING - A swing that carries the club head more directly backward and upward from the ball.
USGA - United States Golf Association.
VARDON GRIP - The overlapping grip.
VISUALIZATION - A mental image of a swing or shot or even an entire round.
WAGGLE - Movement of the club head prior to swinging. A flourishing of the club behind and over the ball.
WATER CLUB - Obsolete club from around the 1880's to the 1930's that was designed for playing the ball from a water hazard.
WATER HOLE - A hole with water, such as a stream or lake, that forces the players to shoot over it.
WEDGE - An iron used for short shots that has a high-loft - pitching wedge, sand wedge.
WHIFF - To swing and miss the ball completely.
WHINS - A British term for heavy rough. Gorse bushes.
WHIPPING - The material used to wrap the space where the head and shaft are joined.
WINDCHEATER - A shot played low against the wind. It is played with strong backspin and starts low and rises only toward the end of the shot.
WHIPPY - A shaft more flexible than normal.
WINTER RULES - Usually local golf rules that allow the player to improve the lie of the ball on the fairway.
WOOD - A club, which can be made of wood or metal, that has a large head and is used for shots requiring greater distance. Usually a numbered set of 5 or more starting with the driver and proceeding to the 5 wood.
WORMBURNER - A ball hit with adequate distance that hugs the ground.
Wedge - A "wedge" is a special type of iron used for hitting the shortest shots in golf. This club usually has an "S", "W", "L", or a number such as 55, 56, or 60 on it.
X - X" is the symbol written on a scorecard when a player fails to complete a hole or is otherwise unable (or unwilling, as the case may be) to write down a stroke score.
X-OUT - or x-out golf balls, are name brand golf balls on which that name brand has been crossed out - usually with a row of X's - and sold at a steep discount to that brand's regular price. A Maxfli, to use an example, Noodle X-Out is essentially identical to a regular Maxfli Noodle. But at some point in the production process, a small blemish of some sort occurs. It could be cosmetic, or perhaps the weighting or sizing is a tiny bit off. Rather than just tossing out these balls, the manufacturers stamp over the name brand and sell them as "Maxfli Noodle X-Outs" (or whatever the brand may be). Most recreational golfers will not be able to tell any difference in performance between X-Outs and their "regular" counterparts.
YARDAGE RATING - The rating of the difficulty in playing a hole based on yardage only.
YIP - To mishit a putt due to an attack of yips.
YIPS - A condition, generally believed to be psychological, which causes a player to lose control of his hands and club. In Great Britain, the condition is referred to as the "Twitchies."
ZILLION - That last hole was a bad one, I shot a ZILLION!
ZOOMIE - A drive that goes further than most drives ever hit by the golfer who smacked it.