Golf Lingo For Beginners


In every industry and every sport you will find a certain amount of jargon. Don’t be intimidated if you aren’t totally up-to-speed with all the colorful slang right away, the pros at Superstition Mountain’s private golf club will be happy to offer some guidance. Take a look at some of our favorite, more unique, golf jargon below and then head over to our Facebook page and tell us what terms most trip you up, or which you like the best.

When you step up to the ball and set the club down behind it. This position gets you ready to start your swing.

a “slice” or shot that curves from left to right. A “hook” curves in the other direction…but only for right-handers. If you’re a lefty the terms are reversed.

this is a “fat” shot around the green (see “fat” below) and typically used to describe a chip shot. Golf Digest’s David Leadbetter dedicated an article to avoiding “the dreaded chili-dip,” and you can read it here.

a second putt after the first goes past the hole.

a water hazard…or what’ll enjoy in the clubhouse after your round. Quick bonus term, the “nineteenth hole” is the clubhouse bar/lounge.

when the ball curves sharply left of where you were aiming. If you are plagued by the Quacker, our golf instructors can help correct your swing.

a swing is called “fat” when you hit more of the ground than the ball. When the club hits the dirt or grass too soon, your momentum is slowed and the club doesn’t have enough force to hit the ball very far off the tee.

someone who isn’t very good at golf.

Inside the leather 
when the ball is positioned closer to the hole than the length of the putter grip. It’s an unwritten rule among many golfers that if your ball falls “inside the leather” it’s considered good and you can pick it up.

when a ball hits the edge of the hole and then circles the rim without going in. Yeah, we hate when this happens too.

a shot that doesn’t get airborne and the ball sails very close to the ground. These types of shots are sometimes caused by a “fat” swing.

moving or jiggling the club simple to stay loose and in motion.

This is just a small sampling of some slang you may hear out on one of our two Nicklaus designed courses. For those itching for a larger vocabulary lesson, offers a full glossary of terms and a few tips to go along with them. If your interested in learning more about the game, check out What I wish I new before I Started Golfing or talk to one of our knowledge golf professionals at 480-983-1411.