- Move loose impediments
- Measure the putt to determine who is away (farthest from the hole)
- Pick up or place his ball
- Tamp down a ball marker
- Repair pitch marks or plugged holes on the green
- Remove a movable obstruction
- Exception: There’s no penalty if the player does this inadvertently or to avoid stepping on another golfer’s line.
- Example: Wayne’s ball lies inches from the cup and he prefers to putt out rather than mark it. Taking a normal stance would put his feet directly on Sean’s line, so Wayne straddles his own line, avoiding Sean’s, and taps in. There is no penalty.
- Penalties for violating Rule 16-1: Match play – loss of hole. Stroke play – two strokes.
16-1. The player is allowed to touch the line of his putt (without pressing anything down) to:
The player can also place the clubhead in front of the ball at address.
On the green, a player can pick up and clean his ball as long as he marks it, then replaces it in the same spot. He can’t mark and pick up his ball, however, if it’s on the line of another ball in motion.
A player is allowed to repair pitch marks and plugged holes on the green, even if his ball lies off the green.
Before holing out, players cannot test a green by rolling a ball on it or rubbing it. Players may putt on a green once they’ve finished the hole.
When addressing a putt, the player can’t straddle the line or place either foot directly on the line or an extension of the line behind the ball.
Unless it is his turn to play, a golfer can’t hit his putt while another player’s ball is in motion
16-2. If a player’s ball hangs over the lip of the cup, he’s allowed reasonable time to reach the hole plus 10 seconds to wait for the ball to drop into the hole. If it doesn’t, the ball is considered at rest and the player must putt out.
a. Touching Line of Putt
(Indicating line for putting on putting green – see Rule 8-2b)
b. Lifting and Cleaning Ball
A ball on the putting green may be lifted and, if desired, cleaned. The position of the ball must be marked before it is lifted and the ball must be replaced (see Rule 20-1). When another ball is in motion, a ball that might influence the movement of the ball in motion must not be lifted.
c. Repair of Hole Plugs, Ball Marks and Other Damage
The player may repair an old hole plug or damage to the putting green caused by the impact of a ball, whether or not the player’s ball lies on the putting green. If a ball or ball-marker is accidentally moved in the process of the repair, the ball or ball-marker must be replaced. There is no penalty, provided the movement of the ball or ball-marker is directly attributable to the specific act of repairing an old hole plug or damage to the putting green caused by the impact of a ball. Otherwise, Rule 18 applies.
Any other damage to the putting green must not be repaired if it might assist the player in his subsequent play of the hole.
d. Testing Surface
During the stipulated round, a player must not test the surface of any putting green by rolling a ball or roughening or scraping the surface.
e. Standing Astride or on Line of Putt
The player must not make a stroke on the putting green from a stance astride, or with either foot touching, the line of putt or an extension of that line behind the ball.
f. Making Stroke While Another Ball in Motion
The player must not make a stroke while another ball is in motion after a stroke from the putting green, except that if a player does so, there is no penalty if it was his turn to play.
(Lifting ball assisting or interfering with play while another ball in motion – see Rule 22)
(Position of caddie or partner – see Rule 14-2)
(Wrong putting green – see Rule 25-3)
16-2. Ball Overhanging Hole
When any part of the ball overhangs the lip of the hole, the player is allowed enough time to reach the hole without unreasonable delay and an additional ten seconds to determine whether the ball is at rest. If by then the ball has not fallen into the hole, it is deemed to be at rest. If the ball subsequently falls into the hole, the player is deemed to have holed out with his last stroke, and must add a penalty stroke to his score for the hole; otherwise, there is no penalty under this Rule.
(Undue delay – see Rule 6-7)