How to Read the Putting Green
Hi, my name is Ed Ibarguen, and GolfLink has asked me to do a few tips on putting and that is going to include reading putts, it is going to include the best practice that you can do to make the short putts and we are going to talk about the stroke and some basic set up stuff.
Why Putting is Important
Why don't we start right now with a really good situation? You start out with golf and putting seems like the easiest thing to do, and you don't practice it. In reality, putting is the most important stroke in the game.
For example, if I hit a three-wood from 245 yards, or think if you hit a three wood from 245 yards and you got it this close to the hole, would you consider that is a good shot? Well, of course, you would. But then you get in here and you go to putt it and you can't make it you may as well have been 50 feet away. Remember, if you can not putt, you can not play.
How to Aim Your Putt
Let's spend some time on putting right now and let's figure out what we can do to make you a better putter. The first thing is that when you have a little short putt like this you will not even bother to practice it on the putting green.
What most people do is they take three balls, they choose a target that is about fifteen or 20 feet away, they roll balls to that target, and then all they are doing is they repeat that process over and over again as they are just practicing missing putts.
Davis Love and Bob Rotella Drill to Improve Putting
Davis Love and Bob Rotella got together and came up with a program for Davis when he was in school at University of North Carolina and that is to start with very short putts, push the ball into the hole with no backstroke so that you can see the ball going into the hole with no backstroke so that you were seeing the ball go in the hole.
Here is have a tee marked at about two feet away from the hole, I want you to come on in and take your normal putting stance, putting grip and instead of taking the club back and stroking it through just start right behind the ball and simply drag the ball straight into the hole. You will do this to get 10 balls in a row to go in the hole. If you miss one you have to start all over again.
What we are focusing on is simply to keep the blade square to the hole and drag it though. If you will do this you are going to find that you are now keeping the blade square enough through impact that you can have that ball go in the hole.
What About Backstroke?
Of course, a lot of people say wait a minute Ed, the golf stroke according to the USGA has to have a backstroke.
Keep this in mind, if I get right here without any backstroke at all and I am going to drag it out there as far as I can, that ball is going about 20 five feet, 20 five, 20 seven feet. If you have a three-foot putt on the golf course and you know you have to have a little bit of a backstroke try to realize that you do not need a long backstroke. I see people with three footers that take it all the way back to here and then they have to decelerate coming into the ball.
What I would rather have you to do is start with this little short practice drill, just push it straight in the hole from two feet and three feet. If you can make 10 in a row at two feet, 10 in a row from three feet, you have now seen 20 putts go in the hole.
Now you can start to add a little stroke and keep that same feeling of that solid clubface going right through the ball to the target. That is great short game practice. Come on back and we are going to talk about how to read putts and some longer putts as well.