Golf Drill to Practice Breaking Putts

By John Elliott

Use Your Imagination

One of the keys to being a good putter is using your imagination. The more creative and the more imaginative you are usually the better putter you are. Part of that has to do with the fact that all putts are not straight. One of the things that I would recommend that you do to learn about your stroke and to improve your attitude in putting, which means make more putts, is find yourself about a 10 or eleven footer like I have found here, take a small pile of balls, casually set up next to the ball and roll some putts so that you can see what the putt does. I don't care what it does, I just want to see what it does. We can see that it is just breaking from right to left.

Get a Feel for the Green

Once we get a feel for what this putt does then you get down low and you set the club down and you aim it to the high point of that arc. I see this putt moving about three inches from right to left. I have put my putter down and I will take my magic marker and draw a small line on the green. This line should help me make putts because now the ball goes to the center of the line and from there I aim my club down the line. if I can get it to start on the line I have a very good chance, that is called a yip, which I have had for many years, don't feel bad for me it happens every once in a while, it is where my nerves went nuts. You can see how the ball was starting down and curving down that line. The whole idea here is that you would be able to set up on the line, square to the line, stroking down the line, so the ball would start rolling down that line with the idea that through this practice you are going to make a lot more putts.

Mark Your Ball to Help Your Putt

Having said that, when you get out on the golf course, if you have a difficult time aiming, I would highly recommend that you make a line on your golf ball. I run it right through where it says TP Black. I use a magic marker to do this but I also use what is known as a cup. The cup fits right over the top of the ball, you line in up with in this case TP Black. Then you take your marker off of your cup and then you draw a line. Now each time I set up to putt, and I will now do that towards our camera, I am aiming the line where I want the putt to go. Watch, as I aim this line towards our camera man Zach, I get down here nice and low, set the ball in a vertical manner and I am now aiming it down my target line.

When you are doing this and you have marked the ball keep the mark down until you have backed up, checked it out form another six or eight feet behind the ball. If you like where that line is going walk in and lift up your mark. The reason that I want you to do this is because if you lift up your mark each time you line it up and you then go to double check it, to move it again you have to re-mark it. So you leave the mark down until you are totally satisfied with where the line is going and then you just bend down one time, pick your mark up.

Check with Your Putter's Line

Now when I walk in to putt I am going to line the line on my putter, the white line on my putter, up with the blue line on the ball. I now know my putter face is square to the line because my putter face can not be square to the ball. How can you set up square to something that is round? The answer is you can not. So we are lining the line up with the line which gives me a great feeling and feedback that this ball is going to go down the line. Where? Hopefully into the hole. Two points here. One, use the line on the green for alignment. Two, maybe you need a line on your ball for alignment. Either way, we want you to make more putts.

About the Instructor