Dictionary of Golf Terms

Sand Trap A sand bunker.
Sand Wedge An iron club designed to lift balls out of sand hazards.
Sandy When a golfer still makes their par after escaping from a sand hazard.
Sclaff When the club strikes the ground well behind the ball.
Scoop To scoop the ball into the air rather than loft it.
Scorecard The card on which a golfer records his score during play.
Scotch foursome Where players play in teams of two taking alternate shots. Each hole is started alternatively as well.
Scramble Team competition where players play from the position of the best ball of a team member after every stroke or drive.
Scratch A player without handicap meaning that he can complete the course on par.
Scratch Player A golfer who does not require a handicap, such as a professional.
Second Ball Situation in which a player is obliged to play with two balls because of a question over the legality of the first ball which cannot be settled by a referee or other members of the group. The player's score is that for whichever ball is deemed legal at a post match adjudication.
Selective Perimeter Weighting Equal weight over the toe and heel of the club head.
Semi-Private Course A club with members but also allows non-members to pay and play.
Set The number of golf clubs carried (maximum is 14).
Shaft That part of the club between the head and the grip.
Shag Bag A bag used to store balls whilst practising.
Shagging To collect balls from a practice area.
Shank To strike the ball with the part of the club head where the heel is joined to the shaft.
Short Game Chipping, Pitching and Putting.
Shot An attempt to hit the ball.
Shotgun Start Tournament in which the field start from different holes at the same time rather than queuing up at the first tee.
Sidehill lie When the ball comes to rest on a slope.
Single An unaccompanied golfer.
Sink a putt To hit the ball into the hole.
Sit Expression aimed at the ball to encourage it to stop rolling.
Sit Down A term which the golfer says to the ball to encourage it to land or stop rolling.
Skull Hitting the ball above it's centre, thus making it fly very low to the ground.
Sky When the club head only just strikes the very bottom of the ball causing it to fly straight up into the area. Normally happens when the ball is on a tee or in the rough.
Slice To induce too much backspin onto the ball causing it to travel through the air following inside to out swing. Opposite is Hook.
Smile Colloquialism for a lacerated golf ball; a cut in the ball is normally caused by a thinned shot.
Snake A long putt which travels over the undulations of the green.
Snap Hook To severely hook the ball.
Snipe To hook the ball such that it drops quickly.
Sole The underside of the club head.
Sole plate The metal underside of a wood's club head.
Speed of Play The time it takes to play an 18 hole ground.
Spike Mark A tuft of grass caused by spiked shoes.
Spike Wrench Instrument used to remove spikes from golf shoes.
Spoon Another name for a 3 wood.
Square stance When your left and right feet are level and at right angles to the ball when you take your stance.
Stableford Point scoring competition. One point for a bogey, two points for a par, three for a birdie, four for an eagle and five for an albatross.
Stance To place your feet in preparation for a swing .
Standard Scratch Score The score a scratch golfer should get when playing a course in normal conditions.
Starter An official who determines where and when golfers tee off.
Stick The pole in the centre of the green with a flag attached.
StimpMeter An instrument used to measure the speed of a green by applying a known force to the ball and measuring the distance travelled.
Stipulated Round To play the number of holes of the course determined by the committee during competition.
Stony When a ball comes to rest near the flagstick.
Straight Flight A ball travelling in a straight line during flight.
Stroke An attempt to hit the ball. The stroke starts on a players downswing.
Stroke Counters Gadget to keep track of strokes.
Stroke Hole A hole where in match play an opponent receives a shot. It is determined by the stroke index of the hole.
Stroke Index An assessment of a holes difficulty used to award shots during strokeplay / matchplay conditions.
Stroke Play Where the winner of a match or competition is the player who used the least number of strokes (after handicap deduction) to complete the course.
Stymie When an object such as a tree lies between a player's ball and the green.
Sudden Death Where additional holes are played after a tie. The winner is the first player to win a hole outright.
Summer Rules The normal local rules of the course apply (i.e. allowances made for the winter weather are removed).
Surlyn Tear resistant plastic outer of modern golf balls (by DuPont Corp).
Swale A depression in the terrain.
Sweet Spot The preferred spot on the club face with which to strike the ball.
Swing The action of hitting the ball.
Swing weight A measure of a club's weight.

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