Swingfit Academy Tips
1. MAKE THE PUTT SHORTER
Most golfers have the tendency to be outcome-based orientated, meaning – their goal when standing over the putt is to make it. If you think about it you have no control over what the ball will do or what it will hit on its way to the hole. Greens are not perfect – they’re close to perfect, but it is not a pool table. There are many imperfections on a putting surface and the ball will not always stay on its line – it could hit a spike mark or a little rock and deviate off line.
Take your focus away from the outcome (the hole) and instead think ‘line and speed’ – if you start the putt on your intended line with your intended speed you’ve hit a great putt. If it drops or misses, you’ve done what you’ve set out to do. A nice tip to get your focus away from the hole is to think 3” in front of the ball. Think about it this way: a putt can’t draw or fade, so if you roll the ball on your line for the first 3 rolls it’s going to be difficult for the ball to move off that line, unless it hits a mark as mentioned above. If you struggle with those little four footers think 3 rolls, think how easy it is to make a 1 or 2 ft putt and how confident you hit that putt into the back of the hole. If that putt misses the ball will roll for another 2 feet, so that’s your 4 foot distance. Think about it, then your 4 foot putt is exactly the same as your tap in 2 footer.
2. PRACTICE YOUR LAG PUTTING
We often see shots lost on the greens due to not getting the first putt close enough. It’s really important to get your first putt inside that 3ft circle, making the second putt very easy. Try not to make your first putt: it may sound strange – but it’s a good way of just lagging the putt. When we try and make a putt, we tend to be too aggressive and leave ourselves that dreaded 6ft putt to save par.
When you’re next practicing your putting: Take ten balls and stand at one end of the putting green and hit ten putts to different holes. Try and hit putts longer than 20ft – this is a great drill to get a feel for the longer putts. It’s important to practice the shorter putts, but first you have to learn how the get it close. Keep doing this for a few weeks and you will start gaining confidence in your putting. Work on your long putts and see your score drop.
Have fun golfing!