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There has been controversy regarding anchored (belly, long, non-traditional, etc.) putters, to the point that the governing bodies of golf - the USGA, the R&A, etc. - are considering banning them from competition (similar to the "groove rule").

Personally, I use a non-anchored mallet-head 34" heavy putter. I can't putt, but I am not convinced that I can putt any better with the putter sticking into my belly. What advantages do long and belly putters have over traditional putters?

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

Basically, with an unanchored putter, you have six degrees of freedom; your fingers, wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips and knees can all move during a putt (pretty much any golf stroke) possibly resulting in a putt off the intended line, or too hard/soft.

A belly putter, designed to be anchored pretty much at the bellybutton, almost completely takes the fingers, wrists and shoulders out of it, and reduces the impact of the elbows and hips. A long putter (anchored to the chest or even the chin) also takes the fingers and hands out of it, and depending on its length and where it's anchored reduces the impact of movements in the hips and knees, primarily by allowing the golfer to stand more upright. The long putter, anchored from the chin, also gives the golfer a sight picture right down the shaft of the club which can help in centering the clubhead on the ball.

All of these putters can be used for the two most common types of putt; the pendulum swing and the power putt. In virtually all cases, the fingers, wrists and elbows should not move during the shot, and the shoulders should only move as much as they have to; what changes between the two putting styles, regardless of putter, is whether the club is "pushed" through the stroke or simply raised back and then allowed to let fall.

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According to my last golf digest, (oct '12 in argentina), it gives you better control over your swing. Once you get the line, if you anchor your putter under your belly, or use another type of help with it, your balance will not make a yip with the ball. you will be balance if you try to do a pendulum type of movement, because all your body will become (according to this magazine) only one. Personally I started playing with a kid putter, and then I switch to a normal one, and I think is good for me.

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Interesting. I try the pendulum stroke with a conventional putter (moving only my shoulders throughout the putt)...but I can understand that not being as consistent as belly/long/anchored putters. However, wouldn't the anchor approach take away the "hinging" for long/lag putting? – ᴍᴀsᴛᴇʀᴍɪɴᴅ_ᴇᴅ Nov 8 '12 at 14:17
Don't have a clue, but the pendulum works for me even using it for pitch and run... I don't have major problems with my putt. in fact is the only shot I'm very consistent... – gbianchi Nov 9 '12 at 5:07
Gotcha. Do you have a source of your findings, perchance? – ᴍᴀsᴛᴇʀᴍɪɴᴅ_ᴇᴅ Nov 16 '12 at 21:25
not really.. unless you want a scan of the magazine.. I think this is not a serous answer.. there would be a better one... – gbianchi Nov 17 '12 at 15:11
Okay, it's not a bad answer. Thanks. – ᴍᴀsᴛᴇʀᴍɪɴᴅ_ᴇᴅ Nov 17 '12 at 20:05

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