Swinging a putter is a pretty simple process. Or is it? Why is it so difficult to choose a line and then to putt a golf ball up that line? Unfortunately sloped greens affect our choice of direction and our bodies are designed to swing a putter in an arc. Putters are not designed to be hit in a straight line like a croquette mallet. You have to learn the tricks to swing in a straight line at the point of contact.
Your goal in putting is to plan for a straight putt on a planned target line. Unfortunately your chosen direction and speed of you swing will determine how much your straight putt will break. I love the tip that Rory McIlroy uses in putting.
1/ He checks the slope from below his putting line to the hole as he stands perpendicular to the line of his putt.
2/ He then stands behind the hole to see the break at the hole where the ball will break the most as it slows down.
3/ Then he stands behind his ball for a final check on the slope of the green and to choose his target line. He actually imagines hitting directly at the hole to get a feel for how far his ball will fall down (D) from the hole if he hits the perfect weight to reach the hole. Then he chooses a line to hit his straight putt so that it will fall about the same distance (D) down to the hole.
Now that you have your target line you need to swing your putter with enough force to pass the hole by about a foot (or it will never go in the hole).
You need the skill to hit a straight putt on your target line.
• 85% of your initial putt direction is caused by your putter face direction and 15% is caused by your swing direction. Both must be on the right line-up and your ball needs to be slightly in front of the centerline between your legs to allow the upward impact of your putter to start the roll of your ball.
• Your putter grip should have a flat surface which is perpendicular to the putter face. Let your thumbs line up on the flat surface of the grip and ensure that the back of your leading hand is pointing up your target line.
• Use the rocking motion of your large shoulder muscles for straight putt. Take any wrist or hand action out of your putt to avoid shaking hands.
• Your body naturally want to swing in an arc (around the axis of your spine). KEY FOR SUCCESS: Lock your eyes on that point of impact and swing through the point of impact and then UP (like a pendulum) along your target line instead of arching around your body.
Learn to putt straight using GOLFSTR+ to lock your leading wrist. You may want to try releasing your trailing hand at the point of impact so that your leading hand will carry your putter straight up your target line. (It’s the only way I can swing my putter straight up my target line.) Buy one today at www.GOLFSTR.com
Golf Truism #33 The wind is in your face on 16 of the 18 holes.