Do you know what and how to practice your putting?
This blog will provide you with a skill test whilst practicing your putting distance control which I like to coach my clients. The whole area of the short game is very often neglected in preference to hours of hitting buckets of balls at the range, which incidentally can bear little relevance to actual course situations unless the player possesses prior knowledge on how to achieve this.
I believe players do not spend time working on their putting mainly for the following reasons
- They perceive it to be “boring”
- Lack of comprehension how to measure improvement
- Do not understand basic fundamentals of the putting stroke
- Can end up with a sore back (due to ineffective practice)
- Believe tomorrows putting round will be improved
There are many elements that make up an effective putter which is another topic but the purpose of this putting blog is to provide you with one simple drill which can enhance your enjoyment rather than focus solely upon technical elements.
Feel and Distance Control
This is a skill that can be learned so I would like to share with you one practice game which can be worked upon on a individual basis or as part of a competition with your playing partner, remember we want to have “friendly competition!” It is important that we try to recreate as near playing conditions as possible during practice.
Pace putting is a really critical element to assist with our overall putting statistics and shot reduction, I believe putting to a hole is not always necessary when working on “feel” so next time you are on your putting green on your own or with a friend simply putt 5 balls to the fringe trying to finish as close as possible keeping the ball on the green, rewarding points as follows.
- 3 points finishing 1 grip length away (approx. 1ft)
- 2 points finishing 1 putter length (approx. 3 ft)
- 1 point finishing 2 putter lengths (approx. 6 ft)
- 0 point if the ball finishes on the apron (past the hole)
This game can be measured for improvement with the scores accumulated on an individual basis or a match play style format which is great for new players to gain understanding of the various formats of the game. A variety of lengths and contours can be selected randomly which allows players to experience a variety of playing situations
My favourite saying of “Perfect Practice makes permanent” (Vince Lombardi) is certainly something to remember, I hope you enjoy your new drill and please let me know how you get on.