Longitudes Group, a sports market research firm based in Portland, OR, asked their avid golfer survey panel about their opinion on the Belly Putter regulation. The polarizing results are in and the panel slightly sides with ‘yes’ the belly putter gives an unfair competitive advantage with a 39% response rate over the 34% response rate stating ‘no’ it does not give an unfair advantage. On May 21st, 2013, the USGA and R&A ruled that the use of the belly putter would be banned from regulation play as of January 1st, 2016. From the USGA, “Rule 14-1b has been approved in which it prohibits the use of anchoring the club in making a stroke.” source: USGA.
Of the survey panel, 13% currently use a belly putter and 11% have used a belly putter in the past. 9% of respondents do not currently play a belly now, but they do have an interest in trying a belly putter in the future. 60% stated that the rules of the golf should be universal for both professional and amateur golfers. With the new rule change the 13% surveyed who currently play belly putters will need to work on their free stroke putting style to gain a competitive edge on the golf course.
For further information on this study and other golf related research, please contact us at: