When a student comes to me to improve his/her putting I first ask a few questions to try and figure out their mindset and then do an evaluation. The evaluation is very simple based on the concepts of read, feed and speed. We must first analyze the correct line. We must then feed the putt down that line and then roll the ball the correct speed relative to the line you have chosen. If we struggle in any of those areas the chances of being a successful putter are not very high.
Try to be brutally honest with your evaluation of why you struggle to make putts. All 3 of these skills need to be fairly strong to be a consistently good putter. I find most golfers that struggle with the putter do not have a good understanding of how important it is to match up start line with correct speed.
If you struggle with your start line a very effective way to improve is to find a straight putt and place a gate with two golf tees within 12 inches of your ball and practice rolling the ball through the gate. The gate should be no more than than about 2 to 3 balls wide.
An effective way to practice distance control is to have 3 balls. The 1st ball is rolled as you normally would with your eyes open and pay attention to where it comes to rest next to the hole. The next two set up to the ball and then right before you start your putting motion close your eyes and as soon you finish your stroke and before you open you try and guess is the distance just right, short or past the hole. Do this from 10 to 60 feet or more from a cup. This will strengthen your sense of touch.
If you feel you struggle with the correct read Aimpoint Express is a great process to help improve improve your skill in this area! I havetaught this relatively new green reading process to almost 200 golfer in the last two years withgreat results!
Let’s all make more putts in 2016!