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Your shoulders influence the way

your putter swings. 


The alignment of your shoulders and how they move in your putting stroke play an important role in guiding your putter.

Ball and Socket

ball and socket construction allows you to move your shoulders in different ways. The question is whether you should rotate them or rock them in your putting stroke?

The answer to this question depends on how you believe your putter should swing in your stroke. In other words which putter path is best for you?

Rotate - Arched Path

Stan Utley recommends that you should allow your putter to swing on a natural arc that comes inside on the backstroke, squares up at the point of contact, and then returns to the inside on the follow-through.

Ping Anser 2

Ping Anser 2

Because you stand to the side of the ball and use a club with a shaft that is angled off the vertical, it is the easiest way to swing your putter. Your putter will move on a path that is square to the arc, but not square to your aimline (target line).

A heel-shafted putter with toe hang, because of its design and construction, is best suited to moving your putter in an arc.

Rock - Square Path

Dave Pelz, however, advocates a pure in-line path that keeps your putterface square to your aimline. His argument is that the shaft of the putter is not the pendulum of the stroke, and therefore the lie angle of the putter shaft does not affect the path of the stroke.

Rossa Corza Ghost

Rossa Corza Ghost

His method for swinging the putter promotes an up-and-down rocking motion rather than a rotational movement around your spine.

For this type of stroke a face-balanced putter is a better choice. This is because the face-balancing helps to prevent the putter head from opening and closing.

Rotate or Rock Your Shoulders?

Most putts where accuracy is more important than direction fall in the range of three to fifteen feet. For this length of putt, the size of your backstroke is quite small, especially on fast greens.

Whether you are rotating or rocking, the difference in movement is minimal.

Control the Left

A technique a number of golfers use is to hold their follow-through to prevent their putterface closing prematurely. To do this they rock their left shoulder upwards just after contacting the ball.

In other words the putter is released more down the line instead of allowing it to move immediately back to the inside.

Whatever method you use it is important to move the putting triangle as one unit. Your ability to retain the integrity of this Y shaped arrangement will influence how well you are able to square your putterface at impact. And this should be the aim of any putting stroke.

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Image Source
1 = crh.org (Columbus Regional Hospital)

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