Lower Your Golf Scores
Lower Your Golf Scores
If you really want the edge on the golf course and want to lower your golf scores then you have to look no further than to sort out your putting, you don’t have to be a mathematician to work out that your putts per round equate to approx. 50% of your shots or thereabouts, so an area well worth looking at I am sure you would agree?
So you need to make more putts or want to hole more putts per round if you are serious about lowering your golf scores, however to achieve this you will need a solid and mechanically sound putting stroke to do this, even if you had a silky smooth and consistent stroke like a European or PGA Tour player if you are aiming the ball in the wrong direction then you are not going to make the putts anyway.
In recent months I have helped a few amateur golfers improve their putting game, not by changing what they currently do in terms of the actual golf stroke but in helping them read and understand the greens they are playing on – Undulation of the green, grain of the green and most importantly the gravity of what the ball will do when it nears the hole when the gravity takes over.
The last 25% of the putt is the where gravity plays the largest role as this is where the ball slows down its speed and momentum. This is where slope/gravity, the speed of roll and surface factors such as pitch marks, spike marks and the grain of the green have the largest impact.
So to be an effective and consistent putter you will need to know:
1. How to read a green
2. Getting the pace correct on the green
3. How to navigate the undulations of green
All sounds pretty daunting but it doesn’t have to be, I know a lot of golfers that are petrified of putting, they seem to love all parts of the game of golf but even before they get to the green they are talking themselves into a 3 or 4 putt!
You need to embrace putting like you embrace using the driver and also playing bunker shots for instance, putting can be a very rewarding part of your golf game if you learn to embrace and love doing it, you just need to have a set routine like you do with other parts of your game and stick to it, good putters always score well.
I read an article recently about the US PGA Tour player Aaron Baddeley and how he goes about his putting, like the majority of golfers we look at the putt as a whole, Aaron breaks the putt down into small chunks but the main chunk being the last few feet of the putt and what the ball is going to do when it nears the hole, so he is more interested in the last few feet and spends time visualising what will happen in the last few feet when the ball is slowing down and losing momentum – good theory in my eyes and one worth a look at when you are next practising your putting.
So try what Aaron does and break the putt down into small chunks instead of its entirety, if putting is a weak part of your game then this is one way of trying that may suit your putting game.
If you have never used the plumb-lining method then I suggest you give it a go, it’s easy to learn and a quick and effective way to read a putt quickly if need be, you just need to close your weakest eye and use your dominant eye to line up the putt using your putter behind the ball like in the image here, it will give you a quick and effective read of the putt, many of my fellow golfers have adopted this method after seeing me using it out on the golf course with great effect.
Once you have adapted the plumb line method you can then work on your control and reading of the pace of the green, the pace can be effected by how much sun has been on the green during the day, which way the grain is growing on the green, is it an uphill or downhill putt?
My recommended way to prepare yourself for the round ahead is to hit some practice putts on the practice putting green, you find that most golf courses keep their practice putting green to a very similar pace to the greens out on the golf course so always a good place to start especially if you are visiting a golf course for the first time.
To get the pace of the green it is always better to NOT try and make long putts, instead pick a mark on the green and roll up some practice putts up to the mark, to get the feeling of putting the ball in the hole and hearing the sound of the ball hitting the bottom of the hole, just putt a few short putts inside 2 feet or so, this procedure will help you mentally remember the ball falling into the hole and not keep missing the hole because you are making longer practice putts on the practice putting green.
As always if you have any comments or feedback on this article Lower Your Golf Scores please do not hesitate to drop me a message or email me, I will be glad to respond to all of your questions.
Happy Golfing as Always.
Bogeys to Birdies