Putting
Game

The Putting Game stands in direct contrast to

the rest of your shots from tee to green.


IN SHORT

Nothing that you learn on the driving range is readily transferable to the putting green. It is truly a separate game within a game.


The most obvious difference in putting is that you want your ball to hug the putting surface with true forward roll whereas for every other shot you want your ball to get airborne with varying amounts of backspin.

Putting Game

The putting stroke has been likened to a mini-swing. This refers only to the path that the putter takes when it rotates from inside to inside. That similarity apart, it is in the setup at address that putting differs in five important ways from the full swing.


1. Wrists

The wrists are hinging joints that help you to gain clubhead speed in a full swing. The longer you can delay the uncocking of your wrists on the downswing, the more power you are able to generate.

In putting you are not looking for power, but accuracy. It is therefore generally recommended that you lock your wrists during your putting stroke as excessive wrist action causes inconsistency.


2. Weight Shift

In putting you should keep lower body motionless throughout the execution of your putting stroke.

However, in a full swing you want to load your weight on to the inside of your right foot on the backswing, and then transfer it to your left side as you enter the impact area on the downswing.


3. Stance

The recommended setup for your feet is shoulder-width with your toes pointing forward. This square arrangement helps you to stabilise your lower body and prevent it from swaying.

In a full swing your feet are splayed to allow you to rotate your body freely.


4. Grip

The usual method of holding the putter is to place the shaft in your palms so that it runs through the lifelines of your hands. This helps to prevent any unwanted hinging of your wrists.

In a full swing the grip lies more in your fingers as you want to be able to rotate your wrists to generate power.


5. Head

In putting your head position should be level and square, with your chin in towards your chest (but not buried) as if you were nodding off to sleep. This allows you to look down at the ball with a straight gaze rather than looking at the ball down your cheeks the way you do when you are reading a book.

In a full swing you want to keep your chin up and pointed at the ball so as not to limit your shoulder turn. You don't want your arms covering your face as this will put you in a poor position at the top of your backswing.


The Putting Game is unique. It requires a set of skills where the focus is on precision and accuracy, never power. This is because it needs no strength, only a keen eye and deft touch with a consistent tempo in your stroke.

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Related Topics
(Highlighted)

true forward roll

path

lock your wrists

lower body

setup

holding the putter

head position

tempo