Question: Martha and Janet have completed their round of golf. While enjoying lunch, Martha asks Janet, is there a penalty for hitting the flagstick with your ball when you are putting from off the putting green?
Answer: No. You can have the flagstick attended at anytime, on any shot, from anywhere, but it must be attended and or removed when you are hitting your shot from the putting green. If this is not done when hitting from the green and your ball hits the flagstick, you incur a penalty of two strokes, and your ball must be played as it lies.
Tip of the day: There is no absolute agreement on whether it is better to have the flagstick attended and or removed when you are putting or chipping from just off the green. My recommendation is based on your confidence in how well you you can control the speed of the ball when it nears the hole. If the green is fast or you are hitting down hill or from a long distance, you may want to leave the flagstick in the hole. If you feel confident, then take the flagstick out because it will have a better chance of going in if the speed is good.
If you have questions, ideas, or suggestions, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lewis is United States Golf Teachers’ Federation certified. He is also the director of instruction at Sapelo Hammock.