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Better Lag Putting (sometimes referred to

as Long Putting) leads to lower scores. 


Good distance control helps to eliminate three-putting. To obtain a better perspective of the distance that your ball has to travel, there are a number of adjustments to make in your setup.

This means doing everything you can to avoid three-putting in the round.

The length that separates a long putt from a short putt is where you stop thinking about one-putting and start worrying about three-putting.

A Sense of Distance

Willie Park Junior Stance Long Putt

Willie Park jnr 1920
Stance Long Putt

Having a sense of distance is important to rolling your ball close enough for an easy tap-in. On the golf course there are fixed markers for full shots to help you. However, on the green you are on your own.

To become an accomplished putter you must learn to judge how far away the hole is so you can decide how hard to stroke the ball.

You can judge distance better when you look at something with both eyes. This is because our brain uses the angle at which our eyes are converged - how much they are pointing towards each other - to calculate the distance between objects.

Putting Setup

In putting we are mostly focused on direction rather than distance. We set up to the ball with our feet, hips and shoulders aligned parallel to our aimline (target line). This is the recommended position when you are putting for accuracy. However, the way your eyes are aligned, makes it difficult to judge the distance accurately.

In lag putting distance is more important than direction. While it is unlikely that you will miss the hole by more than three feet left or right, you are more likely to leave your putt short.

When you are bent over the ball, turning your head sideways to judge the distance to the hole is not the best way to gain perspective.

To judge distance accurately you need to stand taller with your eyes more towards level so you can look straight down the path of your putt with binocular vision. To accomplish this you need to adopt a modified setup position and possibly your grip.

Technique for Lag Putting

  • Stand tall, but choke down a little on the grip.
  • Assume a narrow stance with slightly more weight on your left side.
  • Position the ball between your feet and stand closer to it.
  • Open your stance and turn your body more to face the hole.
  • Putt the ball in the normal way.

Lag or Long Putting requires constant practice. However, with a modified setup position that gives you better perspective, you will be less likely to three-putt in the future.

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Image Source
1 = The Art of Putting by Willie Park Junior

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