Learning to putt is an essential skill on the green. This precise type of shot can be the difference between a par and a birdie, in some cases. Moreover, a good putt can give a golfer a considerable advantage over their competition, as it is a precise way to wrap up a match.
Many golfers dread bringing out the putter when they land on the putting green. The putter requires the most precision out of all of the clubs, as a tiny misstep could send the ball flying off the putting green. In addition, new players tend to overshoot when they putt, sending the ball into a sand trap or back onto the green.
How to Perfect a Putt
Many golf instructors skim over putting, as they feel that it is more self-explanatory than driving or chipping. However, while the shot distance might not be as long, putting is just as much, if not more, complex than any other type of shot.
At Indian River Golf Foundation, we understand the importance of putting. We know that a good putt can make or break a player’s game, which is why we focus on educating golfers on the correct way to putt.
If a player wants to land the ball in the hole on their first putt, we recommend:
- Proper alignment
- Perfecting the putting stance
- Look over the ball, not at it
- Practice your putting stroke
- Learn proper putting distance
1. Proper Alignment
Learning to set up a put is a crucial element for improving a score. It is one of the most important aspects of improving putting, as well. Many players don’t realize how critical it is to align the club and the ball properly.
It can be tempting to whack the ball into the hole, but it probably won’t go as intended. So instead of aggressively whacking the ball, players should instead ensure their shoulders, feet, and hips are aligned.
The best putting alignment ensures:
- Feet are parallel and left of the target
- The back and knees are slightly bent
- The hips, back, and knees line up with the feet
The feet, knees, shoulders, and hips should all be parallel to one another, which will ensure a precise putt. This position makes it easier to take accurate shots at the hole.
2. Perfecting the Putting Stance
Stance is a difficult concept for many golfers to grasp, both on and off the putting green. Yet, the stance is critical to putting, as every movement can impact the putt.
Again, the biggest mistake most golfers make on putting green is hitting the ball too hard. This mistake can indicate an improper stance. Having an imprecise stance could negatively impact a golfer’s putt, which is why it is so important to have an accurate, precise stance.
The elements of a correct stance include:
- Feet face directly forward
- The golf ball is centered directly in front of the player
- Hands rest firmly on the putter’s grip
Putting stance is one of the most critical aspects to putting. Getting the proper stance can help players angle the ball properly. This precise angle can help the player reach the hole more consistently and in far fewer putts.
3. Look Over the Ball, Not At It
When players are on the green, they usually look directly at the ball when they shoot. Unfortunately, this technique is not very helpful, as it doesn’t allow them to visualize their shot. Looking directly at the ball while putting is a lot like only looking at the steering wheel when driving a car.
If a player focuses on the ball, they will definitely hit it but most likely miss their target, much like if a person is only looking at the steering wheel while driving, the car will move forward, but it may not go where it should.
Instead of looking straight at the ball, we recommend that players look directly over the ball. Players should look straight down at the ball with an easy view of the hole as they prepare their shot. This stance allows players to improve their accuracy, all while perfecting their swing angle and trajectory.
4. Practice your Putting Stroke
Practicing putting stroke is an excellent way to improve a putting technique. Putting should feel natural yet precise, as it is an easy way for golfers to maximize the effectiveness of their shots.
The proper putting stroke involves:
- An entirely still lower body
- Planted feet
- Precise shoulder movements
- Consistent strategy for each hit
- The putter traveling in a straight path
Improving a putting stroke will allow a player to have better control over their putting distance. By improving this aspect of the putt, a player has better control over the ball and can easily predict where the ball will travel once hit.
5. Learn Proper Putting Distance
A master putter can control the distance of their putts. This technique makes a significant difference in the green, allowing players to hit accurate shots consistently.
Keeping distance in check is a tremendous skill on the green. It can be the difference between a ball barely missing the hole and hitting a birdie.
We recommend the following tips to improve putting distance:
- Take practice shots before putting the ball
- Aim the ball several inches past the hole
- Analyze the distance between the ball and the hole
Putting distance can be challenging to master at first, so it is crucial to visualize it before hitting it. Learning how to anticipate how far the ball will travel can drastically improve a player’s game, making putts easier to get in the hole.
Learn More With Indian River Golf Foundation
If you’re excited to get on the course and perfect your putt, contact the Indian River Golf Foundation. We would love to help you tee up!
If you have any questions about our organization or any of our programs, feel free to call at (772) 713-9593 or reach out via email.