Understanding Putting Duration

By John Elliott

Understanding Putting Duration

Duration and Putting

It's kind of neat when you watch people putt because you really can see their tendencies, their assets, their flaws real quickly. One of the big ones is looking at the putt too soon and never learning the time that it takes the ball to go from this point to the next point. The next point now is this hole. This little exercise or drill is called duration. My goal is to strike this putt and try to keep my head down until I think, through feel and experience, that the ball has arrived at the hole. Watch.

Using Feel and Imagination

I go through my normal set up and procedure, looking where I am going, getting a feel of distance through my eyes now. I turned my head to the left as the ball passed the hole. This is not about hitting it close to the hole, it is about feeling the speed through your imagination and your experience before you ever look up to see where the ball is. Here is what I see most people do, and I mean during the drill this is what I see most people do. They think the ball is there by now. Which means they have no feel whatsoever over the duration of time that it takes a ball to go from point A to point B.

Don't Be Impatient

Think if you were driving from Tallahassee to Gainesville, that is in Florida. It is going to take you three hours on Interstate 10, if you under estimate and think it is two then the last hour you are going to be very impatient. Well the same thing happens here. When you go to the green practice your distance drills, practice your directional drills and practice your duration drills because that is the hardest one by far.

Predict Your Speeds

Let me see something here. I am going to do it again and also see if I can get the ball right next to the hole speed wise. As you can see that ball is adjacent to the hole and I turned my head right at when it was at the end of its roll. My ability to feel the duration of time is pretty darn good, especially for a guy that does not play like he used to. Meaning the amount, not the game. Work on your distance, work on your direction and learn the duration. When you do your ability to predict your speeds will be enhanced dramatically.


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