Windy conditions can play havoc with your putting
if you let it get the better of you.
When putting conditions are made more difficult by a strong wind, it is important to retain both your composure and your balance.
When there is a strong wind, it does not mean you have to putt poorly.
You cannot expect always to play in calm conditions as golf is an outdoor game. Certainly it is easier to putt when there is no wind blowing, but there will be days when your ability to cope with the wind will be tested.
Unless the wind is blowing strongly it won't have a huge impact on the roll of your ball since the wind is less powerful near the ground.
More important issues to deal with when the wind blows are:
To putt well in the wind you must have a good attitude. This is a tough ask as the conditions will try your patience and your putting. However, if you allow yourself to get annoyed, you will only make your putting worse.
Decide from the outset that you are going to meet the challenge head-on. Anticipate that you may play over your handicap – but don't fall into the bad habit of complaining.
Remember that everyone on the course is in the same boat. However, those with a good attitude will cope better with the conditions than those who complain, and get frustrated with the effects of the weather.
Retaining your balance when you are being buffeted by the wind is essential to an effective putting stroke. To counteract the wind and stabilise your body:
When you are uncomfortable over the ball and are having difficulty in staying still, you will tend to lose concentration and rush your putts. You need to guard against any quickening of your tempo by following your normal Pre-putt Routine.
You may have to modify it a little as it is unwise to ground your putter or take any rehearsal putts near the ball. This is because you will be penalised if the ball moves unless it is known or virtually certain that you did not cause it to move.
[Note: The Rules of Golf now define 'addressing the ball' as grounding your club immediately in front of or immediately behind the ball, whether or not you have taken your stance.]
One further caution - be careful to control the putter head as you hover it since the wind could blow it into the ball and cause it to move.
Wind in excess of 20-mph will test your putting skills. With a good attitude and a solid setup you can improve the success rate of putts holed.
Finally go out and practise on windy days. Experiment with your setup and putting stroke. This preparation will better help you to meet the challenge of windy conditions.