The Cummings Cove Greens Committee is composed of dedicated golfers who help keep the course in its excellent condition. One of their projects has been advising players on proper ball mark repair in accordance with USGA recommendations.
Proper Ball Mark Repair – There has been much discussion about different tool designs for ball mark repair. Studies by the USGA and the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America show the real issue is not the tool, but the proper use of any tool. The repair technique recommended by the USGA involves three simple steps that can be applied to almost any tool.
- Shorten the repair tool length to no more than ½ to ¾ inch. This can be accomplished easily where the forefinger acts as a base, with the thumb providing the pushing action. Alternately, a tool with shortened prongs to limit insertion may be used.
- Push the ball mark from the back side first. As a golf ball lands on a green, the “back” side of the ball mark will have the most turf displacement. This is where the most pushing should occur, and with some ball marks this is all that is needed.
- Push the ball mark from the sides. The two sides of the ball mark can also be slightly displaced, so the second and third areas to push back are the sides. Under no circumstances should the turf be ripped or twisted toward the center.
If nothing else, please remember this – gently push your ball marks back toward the center and do not lift or twist harshly.