Now that I have explained the different mowing actions I will tell you how different mowing regimes can affect the quality of the lawn. The first decision is whether or not to box off the grass clippings. There is no doubt boxing and removing the clippings produces a much healthier surface as it is drier, more wear resistant, and produces less thatch(more of which later). Most rotary, and all cylinder mowers, are fitted with grass collection systems so it is down to the quality of lawn you wish to have whether they are removed or not. If they are to be removed then the next problem is how to dispose of them as there can be quite considerable quantities, especially if you have a predominately ryegrass lawn. The preferred option is to compost them if you have the room, in which case I will give instruction on the best methods later on. The clippings can also be used to mulch around trees and shrub beds, helping to keep weeds at bay. The last resort should always be to dispose of them to the tip.
Leaving the clippings on the lawn surface solves the problem of disposal, and to be honest, if you only want to have a low maintenance green space then this is the way to go. The main problem is in leaving clumps of cuttings on the surface which can suffocate and kill the grass underneath. This can be avoided by not cutting in wet conditions, not easy in our climate, and by using a brush or cane to scatter the clumps after cutting. The only time I would suggest leaving the clippings on a good quality lawn would be during drought conditions to conserve moisture, again making sure any clumps are scattered to avoid damage.