So, it's official. Anchored putting strokes are banned starting in 2016.
Prior to this season, I switched to a long putter. Truth be told, it's the first putter I ever purchased myself. Until now I had been using the putter my Dad made for me (part of my first set of clubs, now over 20 years old, which was replaced last year). My reasons for going to the long putter are simple. I am more comfortable standing upright.
When I was considering the purchase, the potential ban on anchoring weighed in my decision. I am 99.9% sure I will never be playing in a USGA/PGA sponsored event. Quite frankly, my short term goals are to shoot in the 80's consistently. Also, I am pretty sure I am in the minority of most amateur golfers in that I try and follow the rules to the best of my knowledge. No foot wedges or questionable ball drops here. So when trying out the long putter, I put a lot of time into seeing how it felt without jamming the butt end into my sternum. The answer was, "just fine". Right now my left hand barely touches my shirt when I put, if at all.
The long putter has already shown benefits in my game, no doubt. I feel more comfortable in my stance, and I see the stroke better. Looking into more detail of the rules, I will have the spend some time working on consciously keeping the butt end far enough away to not bring any questions that I am following the rules. And I intend to do that. But I have 2 1/2 years to figure that out.
In the meantime, my short term plan is to not worry about if I unintentionally anchor (I think I might with my left arm to my side at times, not sure), but to get a consistent stroke in place. Once I have that done, then I'll worry about focusing on tweaking it to conform in whatever ways are needed.
And on the bright side, maybe the ban will scare off so many people from buying long putters that stores will drop prices on the high end models to be somewhere I could afford to get one someday!