“Good Shot” – An Over Used Saying in Golf

I try to be a polite player when on the links. I believe it is important to compliment my opponent if they do something worthy of saying “good shot”. Unfortunately, many players automatically respond to any shot with a positive platitude. Personally, I find this annoying and would prefer my playing partner not feel the need to comment of every shot. Let me explain!

As a low handicapper, the majority of my shots are solid and as intended. But, most are nothing fantastic, nor noteworthy. Yet, most of my playing partners offer the ‘good shot’ comment; sometimes before the actually see how my ball finishes. It is a bit annoying to hear “good shot….oh, wow, I did not see that” as my ball sails into the woods. I understand the need to be polite, but being overly polite is not helpful either.

Before I outline where a “good shot” is warranted, I understand that everyone’s perception of a good shot is different. In some cases, any shot in play is a good shot and I respect their point of view. However, this standard does not apply to others games and maybe offering a positive comment is more helpful.

Don’t get me wrong, I offer “good shot” to players as well, but I prefer to limit my comments until someone does something noteworthy. For me, these would be consider situations where I would offer a positive comment:

  • a recovery shot that puts the player back in play or lands on the green
  • a sand shot that stops within 8 feet of the hole
  • an approach shot that stops within 10 feet of the green
  • reaching a par 5 in 2 shots
  • hitting the ball longer than they normally do
  • making any putt outside of 10 feet
  • any birdie, eagle or hole in one gets a positive platitude

As you can see, normal shots that keep me in play do not warrant a “good shot” in my mind. I appreciate my playing partners efforts to keep our round light and enjoyable, but I would prefer limited congratulations until it is deserved.

How about you; do you congratulate someone on every shot?

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

6 thoughts on ““Good Shot” – An Over Used Saying in Golf

  1. Jim,

    For me it really depends on who I am playing with and their skill level for that matter. I remember this one time in a high school tournament where I told my opponent he made a “good shot”, however he disagreed…i’m guessing because of his high standards. I always keep that experience in mind whenever I would like to offer someone words of encouragement. What might be a good shot to me may not be a good shot to them. Thanks for sharing!


    Liked by 2 people

  2. Good read. I fall into the “any shot in play is a good shot” category 90% of the time. Being from far down south we sometimes say “Hey, that don’t suck”.


  3. I guess it depends a little on who I’m playing with but it’s not something that has ever bothered me. As for what praise I give out, it depends a bit on your level of play. I give a lot of praise over even mediocre shots to those who aren’t up to my level. Especially if they’re young. And I give less if you’re a good player.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Kevin

      You are right about it depends on who I am playing with. I guess I do not need that much positive reinforcement while playing. With the younger players, I have to admit I am generous with the compliments as well. Thanks for putting some more perspective to the article.

      Cheers Jim

      Liked by 2 people

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