Golf Glossary - 'B'
backdoor - the edge of the cup farthest away
from the player making the stroke. The back of the cup
such that when a putt rings the cup and falls in 'the
back', it is said to have fallen in the backdoor. Example:
We thought that John had missed the putt, but it fell
in the backdoor.
back nine - (aka: "backside") the
last nine holes on any golf course. The opposite of
"front nine or the first nine holes of any golf
course. Example: "The best holes at Royal Woodbine
are on the back nine."
backspin - (aka: "juice", "english",
"junk") the action of the ball spinning in
the reverse direction to its flight. Backspin will cause
the ball to slow down much faster or even roll back
towards the shooter once it lands on the green.
backswing - the part of the swing that begins
at the address with the club head right behind the ball
and and ends at the top of the swing immediately prior
to the downswing. The backswing essentially begins the
bag - (aka: "golfbag") the bag (usually
made of some kind of fabric or leather) in which a player
places his/her clubs during a game of golf until needed.
bailout - (aka: "bail out" or "bail-out")
to purposefully play or aim away from trouble. Example:
"John was intimidated by all the bunkers on the
right side of the green so he bailed out to the mounds
on the left."
balata - a type of golf ball cover that is softer
and thus easier for the grooves of the club to grab
at contact. Balata is a type of rubber derived from
the dried juice of a tree. The advantage of balata balls
is that they tend to spin better and offer more feel,
however, they tend not to last as long because they
scuff much more easily.
ball mark - (aka: "ballmark" or "pitch
mark") the divot left on the green (whether torn
on not) when an approach shot strikes the green. Example:
"When Jackie got to the green she repaired her
ball mark prior to evaluating the 20 foot putt that
she had left for birdie."
ball marker - (aka: "marker") a small,
flat object usually about the size of a dime (if fact
a dime is sometimes used) that is used to mark the position
of the ball while it is lifted.
ball position - a term used to describe the
position of the ball relative to the stance of a player
(and specifically his/her feet and shoulders) at the
ball washer - any unit used to clean golf balls.
Typically the golf course will provide ball washers
at most tees so that golfers can clean their balls prior
beach - (aka: "sand trap" or "bunker")
any hazard on the golf course consisting of sand. Often
found near a putting green or around the landing area
of the fairway. Example: "Doug's approach shot
fell short of the green and into the beach."
bent grass - a type of grass that is characteristically
fine bladed and smooth. Putting greens in cooler locales
are often seeded with Bent grass.
best ball - a type of golf tournament where
each player plays his/her own ball for the entire round,
while the team records the individual score from the
low team member on each hole. The 'best scores' are
then totaled for the teams final 18 hole score. There
can be two, three or four golfers on each team. Note:
a 'best ball' and a 'scramble' are not the same
birdie - a score of one less than par for any
hole. Example: "Steve made a birdie (4) on the
par 5, 15th hole."
bite - (aka: "check" or "grab"
or "hold" or "sit" or "sit
down" or "hit a house") the result of
backspin when the ball lands on the green. Example:
"Wallace applied so much backspin that the ball
bit the green and stopped short after one bounce."
Golfers often yell or mutter under their breath 'bite'
(or 'hold' or 'sit' or 'hit a house') when they want
the ball to stop quickly. Most often used on an approach
shot. Also see "check".
blade - part of the head of an iron. Specifically
where the face of the club meets the bottom/flange forming
the leading corner of the club head or the blade. Example:
"If you hit the ball with the blade of the club
it could hurt your hands if the weather is cold."
blade - a type of iron where the bottom and
the top are particularly thin as compared to standard
or even oversize clubs. Example: "Karl prefers
to hit blades rather than those new oversized irons."
blade - (aka: "skull" or "thin"
or "belly") the action of hitting a ball with
the blade of a club resulting in a low trajectory shot.
Example: "After a good drive Mark bladed/skulled/thinned/bellied
his approach shot into the bunker at the back of the
blast - (aka: "blast shot" or "explosion"
or "explosion shot") a shot (usually out of
a sand bunker) that impacts the sand prior to the ball
and results in a splash or blast of sand that hopefully
removes the ball from the bunker. Derived from the similar
appearance of a grenade or other blast in sand. Example:
"As Adrian blasted out of the bunker but we couldn't
see him for all the sand."
block - (aka: "block shot" or "
push") technical term used to describe a shot that
travels away from a player's intended line due to an
open face &/or an inside-out swing path.
blocks - see "tee
bogey - (aka: "bogie") a score of
one more than par for a hole.
bogey golf - shooting an average of one over
par on every hole. Example "I am shooting in the
high nineties now but my goal is to play bogey golf
by the end of the summer."
bounce - (aka: "bounce angle") technical
terms used to describe the angle of the sole of an iron.
The higher the bounce angle the harder it is to take
a divot. Example: "Many sand wedges have a large
bounce angle to enable them to be used in the sand without
break - the turn or curve expected to result
from a ball rolling over the undulations of the green.
Regardless of how minute the turn or curve may be. Example:
"It was amazing! Jim read a twelve foot right-to-left
break and sunk the thirty foot putt for par."
bump and run - See 'chip'
bumping it - (aka: "foot wedge" or
"improving your lie" or "preferred lies"
or "winter rules") changing the position of
the ball making either the swing path cleaner or making
it easier to hit the ball. Unless agreed upon by players
before hand or part of local/seasonal rules this is
illegal and penalty strokes may apply.
bunker - a noticeable depression usually filled
with sand. See also: 'beach'.