Golf Putting Techniques

By Steve Silverman

Putting can be both the easiest and most difficult part of golf. It can take on these dual roles for golfers of all levels. Sometimes the best golfers on the PGA tour will go through periods where they are absolultely clueless on the greens and other periods where the only thing that is saving them is their putter. In order to learn how to putt consistently, you must learn how to read greens so you know what kind of putt to take.

The uphill putt -- direct approach

This is regularly considered to be the easiest putt for the golfer to have. Uphill putts are usually direct to the middle of the hole without much of a break. You can strike this putt with the idea of hitting it hard enough to get to the hole. If you can do that and your aim is relatively true, you can make this putt.

The lag putt

When you are 30 feet or more away from the hole, most golfers don't have a realistic shot at making that putt. The idea that most good golfers take is to hit that putt within five feet of the hole. This is called a lag putt. In order to do this, you need to draw an imaginary circle around the hole that is five feet in diameter and try to get your ball to finish within that circle.

The sidehill putt -- reading the break

This may be the most difficult putt a golfer has. In addition to try to figure where the ball will break to or away from the hole, the golfer has to calculate speed and distance. In order to have a chance at this putt, the golfer should walk the length of the putt to look for breaks and dips in the green. The key to this putt is judging speed and knowing where the break is.

About The Author

Steve Silverman is an award-winning writer, covering sports since 1980. Silverman authored The Minnesota Vikings: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly and Who's Better, Who's Best in Football -- The Top 60 Players of All-Time, among others, and placed in the Pro Football Writers of America awards three times. Silverman holds a Master of Science in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism.

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