Minding your manners on the putting green is as important as your etiquette on the rest of the golf course. Everyone knows that a bit of courtesy goes a long way toward gaining respect from other golfers, maintaining good conditions, and enhancing your pace of play. Here are nine tips to remember for a better experience on the putting green, not only for yourself but for other players too. 

Avoid marking the green 

The surface of a putting green is delicate. If you stand on any part of it for an extended period of time, you’ll leave footmarks behind and may even ruin the grass. If you foresee standing in one place on the green for too long, lay a hand towel down to protect the grass. Better yet, move more and avoid standing in the same place for too long. 

Watch for other player’s putts

Before hitting a long putt, check to ensure that your path is clear. If there are other golfers nearby, avoid putting or walking through their line. It’s ok to putt and walk around other players, but it’s not wise to putt or walk through their line. This same rule applies not only goes for the putting green but to the golf course too. 

Time your putting drills

Putting drills are great for perfecting your game but avoid doing them when the green is busy with other golfers. Putting drills can take up a lot of real estate, which can be annoying. It forces others to work around you. Since the practice green is a shared space, you’ll want to conduct your drills when there are fewer people about.

Avoid holes other people are using

We get it -- on rare occasions, the green might be so busy that you and another golfer are putting to the same hole. If available, try practicing on a different one. That way, both you and the other golfer have more space to practice without negatively impacting each other’s sessions. 

Ditch chipping

The putting green is best utilized for putting, not chipping. Chipping creates damage on the green, which can ruin other golfer’s practice time, especially if you don’t repair your marks. What’s more, chipping allows a higher propensity for accidentally hitting another player -- something you certainly want to avoid. Just remember, putting takes priority. 

Keep talking to a minimum

Golfers come to the putting green to practice not to strike up a conversation. It’s ok to ask a quick question -- perhaps about the putter they’re using or a strategy they’re trying. Otherwise, it’s best to leave them alone so they can practice in peace.

Use three golf balls, tops

Using more than three golf balls on the putting green gets messy fast. We understand that you’re trying to better understand the speed of the greens, but you can learn a lot from utilizing just three balls. More than that, and it’ll take you longer to practice. So don’t be a ball hog. Ideally, one ball is best, especially if other golfers are patiently waiting to practice too.

Flag on the play

You aren’t required to remove the flagsticks (or pins) from the holes but if you do, set them to the fringe. If you lay them on the green, they’ll likely be in the way of another putter’s line. Besides, some like to leave the pins in the hole because they feel it increases the probability of making a putt. 

Pack in, pack out

Just like you would on a hike or a trip to the park, what you bring in is what you bring out. The goal is to preserve the land for all to enjoy. The same goes for a putting green. You’ll want to leave the putting green as pristine as you found it. So before heading out, check to be sure you’ve picked up your tees and golf balls and put all the pins back in the holes. 

We invite you to not only utilize our well-maintained putting green to fine-tune your game but to play a memorable round on our award-winning Weiskopf/Morrish-designed Lake Oconee golf course. You can easily book your tee-time online. While here, feel free to stop by the Pro Shop for some helpful advice on putters. Whether you plan on putting, driving, or playing (or all three), we look forward to providing you with a fantastic golf experience here at Harbor Club. See you soon.