Your chances of putting more consistently will improve when your setup at address is sound. While there is no one way to putt, your setup will either help or hinder your ability to develop a repeatable putting stroke.
The setup suggested is one that is balanced, free from tension, and one that will aid your putting stroke.
Your posture at address is not only important in your full swing, it is also the foundation of a good putting stroke.Being comfortable is not the same as being correct. Golfers often slouch over the ball with rounded shoulders while bending from the waist. Unfortunately a poor putting posture gets in the way of a smooth pendulum stroke.
You should be aware of the four Setup Lines recommended by Todd Sones.
There is a tendency for many golfers to align left with their feet and their shoulders. While this is helpful for distance putts, it is not recommended for close-in putts when direction is more important.
Parallel alignment with your feet, knees, hips and shoulders is considered to be the best position for accuracy.
You should be aware of the Flow Lines recommended by Dave Pelz.
There is more freedom with your width of stance once your feet are aligned correctly. However, to prevent lower body motion it is better to adopt a wider than a narrower stance.
The standard width of your stance is the same as the width of your shoulders. A wider stance places your feet just outside the line of your hips.
You should set up so that your feet are at least the width of your shoulders.
There are two aspects to the ball position. The first is from your toe-line to the ball. The second is the position between your feet.
A rule of thumb is that the distance out from your toe-line to the ball should match the distance from the hollow of your neck to your eye line. This is about eight or nine inches.
The ball position in your stance should be centred or a fraction forward of centre.
You can verify the correct ball position out from your toe-line by dropping a second ball from the bridge of your nose. The second ball should strike the inside back part of the ball on the ground.
There are a number of different putting grips. The importance of any putting grip is that your hands work together.
There is a tendency with a conventional reverse-overlap grip for the right hand to overpower the left hand (right-handed players). This has lead to a number of variations such as left hand low and the claw grip.
A good way to balance your shoulder line and neutralise one hand dominating another is to use an oversized grip. This allows your hands to be placed alongside each other on the grip.
You need to be able to place your hands on the grip in an acceptable manner. There is still debate as to whether the grip should run through your palms or your fingers. However, most players grip their putter in their palms.
When you putt you don't want the butt of your putter to move inside your hands. It is easier to grip the handle of the putter more solidly when you use a larger than standard grip.
You should grip the putter so there is no tension in your forearms. Keeping a light grip is better than holding your putter too firmly. The amount of pressure should be just enough to control any unwanted movement at the butt end of your putter.
After you have set up correctly at address you should be able to observe in a mirror the triangle that is formed by your shoulders, arms, wrists, and hands.
During your putting stroke you should maintain the integrity of this putting triangle.
When you have a good understanding of the recommended Setup at Address, you are ready to move on to:
Lesson 2 - Getting Fitted for a Putter.
Related Web Pages and Ezines
Putting Setup - A Precise Setup Creates the Foundation for a Repeatable Stroke
Putting Posture - Cut a Smart Image by Standing to the Ball Athletically
Putting Alignment - Set Up Square and Take It from There is Sound Advice
Putting Stance - A Neutral Setup with Your Feet Reduces the Potential for Errors
Ball Position - Any Old Spot Out in Front of You just Won't Do
Putting Grip - Get a Handle on How to Hold Your Putter with Both Hands
Grip Pressure - Two Smart Ways to Achieve a Constant Hold on Your Putter
Putting Triangle - Maintaining Its Shape is Important to Your Putting Stroke
2. Big Grip - Fitting a Big Grip to Your Putter is a Big Plus to Improving Your Putting
8. Optimum Ball Position - Does an Inch or Two Make a Difference?
11. Putting Gap - Why a Small Putting Gap Can Make a Big Difference
17. Width of Stance - Is the Width of Stance in Putting Immaterial?
19. Right Elbow - A Way to Anchor Your Backstroke in Putting
27. Balance - An Essential Requirement in All Sports
39. Setup at Address - Significant Putting Changes for Better or Worse over Time
40. Reverse Overlap Grip - Under Threat as the Recommended Putting Grip
48. Windy Conditions - How to Avoid a Strong Wind from Derailing Your Putting
52. Wrist Angles - The Make or Break of Any Putting Stroke
53. Eyes Down - Where Should You Look When You Putt?
55. Your Putting Comfort - Comfortable Or Correct? Why Not Both?
56. Left Elbow - Where Should It Point in Your Putting Stroke?
60. Putting Smart - There is No Right or Wrong Way to Putt, only Smart and Dumb Ways
61. Arched Wrists - Should You Consider This Tip to Improve Your Putting Stroke?
65. Split Grip - Can Separating Your Hands on the Shaft Improve Your Putting?
69. Body Height - Down Low, Up Tall, or Somewhere in Between in Your Putting Setup?
71. Putting in Sync - The Importance of Matching Your Stroke to Your Posture
77. Breaking Putts - What Changes, if any, Should You Make in Your Putting Setup?
89. Excellent Putting - You Must Strive for Excellence, but Never Expect Perfection
96. Holographic Putting - 3 Static Positions Decide Your Success Rate on the Green
101. Choosing a Grip - The Way You Arrange Your Hands on Your Putter Matters
111. Left Wrist - The Importance of Letting It Take The Hit in Your Putting Stroke
122. Putting Compensation - Correcting One Error by Creating Another
130. Putting Grips - Reversing Your Hands for Different Putts is Not Such a Daft Idea