A ball marker is used to mark the location of your ball when you lift your ball to clean it between shots. This is normally done on the green, but it may also occur off the green, except in a hazard, to identify a player's ball. So what do you need to mark your ball's position and where do you get one? Read on for some tips regarding ball markers.
You do not need to buy a ball marker, although many players do. The most typical ball marker is a thin, flat disk. Many players simply use a coin for a ball marker. Others use promotional ball markers that they receive free from golf courses, golf shops or from sponsors of golf tournaments. These are usually plastic with a peg on one side to hold it in place when pressed onto the green surface. The exposed face usually has an imprint of the logo of the sponsor or golf course that provided it.
Another source of free ball markers is golf equipment. A golf glove often comes with an attached, removable ball marker that you pull off to mark your ball and snap back onto your glove when finished using the marker. Some golf hats come with similar attached ball markers. These markers usually bear the logo of the glove or hat manufacturer. They are usually small, about the size of a dime or smaller.
Better quality (usually metal) ball markers are commonly sold in pro shops or golf stores. They may come magnetically attached to a divot repair tool and/or a visor clip, and they are normally flat on the back side, without the back peg. These markers are usually larger, about the size of a quarter. Loose metal ball markers, usually about the size of a dime, are sold with an integral back peg. The exposed side of the ball marker is usually imprinted with a logo. Those sold in a pro shop usually have the logo of the golf course on them. Another common imprint is the logo of a university or a professional sports team. Golfers who wish to display their loyalty to a favorite course, alma mater or sports team can do so with the ball markers they use.
Custom ball markers can be imprinted with the owner's monogram. High end markers can be gold-plated. These may be ego gratifying or nice to look at, but they are certainly not necessary.