What Is A Stick Golfer? Exploring More Slang In Golf

Golf can be incredibly enjoyable, but it comes with its special language. Although you won’t find these slang expressions in the official rules of golf, they are widely used and accepted among players of all levels. One such phrase is “stick,” which refers to many meanings in golf. In this article, we’ll explore the origins of this phrase and its meaning, as well as other popular golf slang that can help make conversations about the sport more lively and entertaining.


What Is A Stick Golfer?

Stick golfer is a slang term that refers to a person who plays very well in golf; in other words, he is a golfer who can hit the ball consistently and accurately. 

Stick golfers are usually very experienced players who have mastered the fundamentals of the game, such as grip, posture, and swing. They also greatly understand how to properly read a course layout and use the best clubs for specific shots. The real stick golfers definitely are golfers who have a low handicap. 

What Is A Stick Golfer
What Is A Stick Golfer? Image Source: Mick Haupt

Some Notions When You Use “Stick” To Talk About A Golfer

In some cases, in a golf conversation, people often use “stick” to give a compliment to their teammates/ friends…It is always best to use the slang positively and encouragingly. However, depending on the situation, you need to be aware when using this slang.

  • Avoid using “stick” as an insult or put-down – Stick golfers know when they have made a bad shot, so don’t take away their self-esteem by pointing it out. Instead, focus on the areas of improvement and offer constructive criticism.
  • Don’t overuse “stick” – If you feel you have mastered the game, avoid bragging about your skills with this term too often. This will make your fellow golfers feel inferior and can cause tension on the course.
  • Compliment other players – When you hear someone using “stick” slang, don’t be afraid to compliment them on their shot or technique. Not only will this make them feel better about themselves, but it will also show your respect for their abilities. However, in some cases, you may not use this slang if you don’t know much about other golfers. Unless they may feel uncomfortable and misunderstand that you are ironing them. 
What Is A Stick in Golf
Some Notion When You Use “Stick” To Talk About A Golfer. ImageSource: Martin Magnemyr.

What Is A Stick in Golf?

Besides the meaning referring to a good golfer, people can use “stick” to talk about other things in golf. We list here the 4 most popular meanings when it comes to “stick” slang in golf.

Golf Club

“Stick” can be used to refer to golf clubs. It is not only used in golf; “stick” is also common in other sports such as fishing…

What Is A Stick in Golf
Stick Can Be Used To Refer To A Golf Club. Image Source: Pixabay

The term “stick” has been used throughout history as early as the 16th century when it was found in writings related to archery and fencing. It was first mentioned in relation to golf in 1611 when James I wrote about “The Sportsman’s Stick or Sticke at Golf.” In its earliest forms, sticks were made from wood such as willow or hickory, though by the late 19th century, they were made from steel and iron. 

Today, a “stick club” is any golf club and can refer to either a wood or an iron – although it generally refers to wood. The term is also used to describe the equipment needed for playing golf, such as the bag of clubs, balls, tees, and other accessories.  

Additionally, many golfers use the term “stick” to refer to their best clubs: those they have the most confidence in and get the best results. A golfer’s “favorite stick” is an expression of pride in their prized club. It can be a symbol of skill and success on the course.  


“Stick” can be a flagstick. People call a flagstick a “stick” for short, and gradually, it becomes more and more common.

what is stick golfers
Stick Can Be Used To Refer To A Flagstick. Image Source: David Luebbert

A flagstick serves as an indication for players to line up their shots accurately by providing them with visual guidance that helps players determine the direction of the shot. This is especially helpful in helping players determine the exact location of their ball on the green and to identify the correct line of play for a successful shot. 

Off The Stick

“Off the stick” is a common phrase in golf to describe a scoring method. It refers to a game where no handicaps are considered when determining the winner. Put simply, the player with the lowest score wins the round. 

What Is A Stick Golfer
Golfers Say “Off The Stick” When They Want To Up Difficulty Of Game. Image Source: Mick Haupt

“off the stick” is the most frequently used scoring approach in tournaments or competitions. The term “stick” may refer to the horizontal stick that is used to denote the position of the hole on a golf green, which is why this method of scoring may be known as “off the stick.”

Chicken Stick

Chicken Stick is a term used to describe when someone wants to up the game’s difficulty. This can be done during a regular match or while playing with friends. The term refers to when players adjust the golf club or other elements to make their shots more difficult and require greater precision. 

For example, if a player were to switch from a 9-iron to an 8-iron, they might say “chicken stick.” Be aware to avoid saying this phrase when you are playing in a highly competitive or serious golf play because you may put pressure or impolite on other players

Understand Other Slang or Lingo in Golf

Watery Grave: Used to describe a shot that has gone into the water hazard.

Gone Fishin’: A phrase used when someone has put their ball in a water hazard.

Fried Egg: When a bunker shot leaves behind an indentation in the sand resembling a fried egg. 

Dance Floor: Another name for the putting green due to its smooth surface.

Worm Burner: A low-flying shot that almost runs along the ground. 

Ace: A hole-in-one or a shot directly into the cup.

Flyer: A shot that goes much further than intended, usually due to a miscalculation of the wind or an unpredictable bounce off the ground. 

First tee: The first tee box of a golf course, where play begins.

Beach: Another name for a sand bunker. 

Buzzard: A score of 3 over par.

Fairway: The short grassy area between the teeing ground and the green.

Birdie: A score of 1 under par. 

Banana Ball: A golf shot that has a curved trajectory, resembling the shape of a banana.

Carpet: Another name for the fairway.

Jungle: A difficult area of rough or dense vegetation.

Kick: A shot that unexpectedly bounces off an object and changes direction.

Mulligan: A do-over of a shot, usually allowed

Fly the Green: When a player’s shot goes over the green.

Gimme: When a player is allowed to pick up their ball without having to itput, usually within a designated distance of the hole.

Green: The smooth, well-manicured area surrounding the hole.

Grip it and rip it: Encouragement to hit your ball with full force.

Chicken Stick: When someone wants to up the difficulty of their game

Cabbage (aka Spinach): A term used for thick, unkempt rough.

Lie: The position of the ball relative to the ground.

Divot: A chunk of turf that is displaced when a club strikes the ground.

Hacker: A person who is not very skilled at golf or someone who plays without adhering to the rules.

Scratch: A score of zero for a particular hole or round.

Sky: When a ball is hit too high in the air.

Stroke play: A type of scoring where players count the number of strokes taken for each hole and add them up to get their final score.

Thin (aka Skinny): When a player hits the ball too low and it fails to gain much height.

Mud Ball: When a golf ball gets covered with mud or dirt

Up and down: When a player is able to get the ball from off the green onto the hole in two strokes or less.

Lay Up: When a player decides to hit the ball shorter than they could in order to better position themselves for their next shot.

OB: Out of bounds: When a ball is hit out of the playing area.

Over the Top: When a player swings their club too steeply on the downswing.

Putter: The club used for putting.

Whiff: When a player completely misses the ball.

Yips: A nervous condition that can cause a golfer to jerk or shake when attempting a shot.

All square: When two players have equal scores after a given hole.

Airmail: When a shot sails over the green and lands out of bounds.

Casual water: Water or other foreign objects that are on the course but not in a hazard.

Cat Box: A bunker that has a shallow area making it easier to escape from.

Duff: A poor shot, usually caused by an incorrect swing. 

Gimmie: When a putt is conceded to the other player because it is within a certain distance of the hole.

Dog Track (aka Goat Track): A golf course that is not well-maintained.

Eagle: A score of two under par.

Flop shot: An elevated shot meant to land softly near the green.

Executive course: A shorter golf course with holes that are between 80 and 100 yards.

Handicap: A numerical representation of a golfer’s skill level.

Hook: When a shot curves severely from left to right.

Juicy lie: When a ball is sitting in a position that makes it easy to hit.



Golf has unique slang words and phrases that can help make conversations about the game more lively. Knowing a few of these phrases can also give you an edge in competitive play, as it helps you to understand what other players are talking about. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced golfer, these terms will help you better appreciate the sport!



What Is A Poor Golf Shot Called?

A poor golf shot is usually called a duff.

What Is A Scratch Golfer?

A scratch golfer is a golfer who has achieved an average score of par or better over an 18-hole round.

What Does The White Stick Mean In Golf?

The white stick is the flagstick, which marks the position of the hole on a golf course. It usually has a white-colored flag attached to it.

What Do You Call Someone Who Loves Golf?

A person who loves golf is often called a “golf nut” or a “golf junkie.”



  • Alvin Daniel

    Hello everyone, I'm Alvin Daniel. I was born in the Philippines and came to the United States when I was 16 years old. I started playing golf at that age and have loved it ever since. I turned professional when I was 21 and have been working as a golf instructor and guide ever since. My goal is to help everyone know more about this great game of golf. And, hopefully, through my instruction, they can improve their skills and enjoy the game even more.

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