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I Love Practicing Putting!

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 

And I used to absolutely hate it. I used to think that no matter how much time spent on the putting green, that it would never really translate to on-course, or tournament conditions. I'd think to myself, "I could sink putts all day long on the practice green and be at a total loss in a round. Why do I even practice putting?"

 

But, I've had a break-through and complete change of heart. I haven't been able to work on my swing for a weeks because of an injury to my hand so all I do is putt now and have developed a really fun routine.

 

100 short range putts (1'-3')

50 mid range putts (4'-8')

18 "holes of golf" (10'-35') Playing 18 holes and seeing how many one-putts I make, pretending they are birdies. My record is 8under so far

18 ultra long putts (35'+) Trying to hole each putt, but also making sure I two-putt at worst.

 

With each segment, I go through my putting routine as though it was an actual putt on the course. And that's where the break-through came to me. Some of you may be thinking to yourself "uhh, duh Ben". But this really clicked for me. By acting out my entire routine I feel as though these putts actually mean something. I feel great and overwhelmed with a sense of accomplishment when I roll in putts number 100 and or those long biridies. Its not just me making meaningless putts anymore.

 

On top of that I got some really good putting advice from a guy I played with named Berry Henson. He's had some Nationwide and PGA Tour experience, along with Canadian Tour and just passed Asian Tour Q School last week. Anyway, this guy can putt! In our round that day he was 8under after 10 holes! After my round we were sitting down for lunch and I took the chance to ask him how he was so good. He was nice enough to give me some pointers and I took that to my game. I started making putts and felt a new confidence. Now that I've put this routine in play, I actually feel like a great putter. Where before, I had the confidence in my short range putts, but not so much in the long range guys. Hooray for putting and putting practice that actually works!

post #2 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben View Post
I started making putts and felt a new confidence. Now that I've put this routine in play, I actually feel like a great putter. Where before, I had the confidence in my short range putts, but not so much in the long range guys. Hooray for putting and putting practice that actually works!


Confidence and attitude is a great thing...I recently started putting while on the way to work and I am enjoying it as well.  I am going to add some things that you mentioned tomorrow morning.  Thanks for sharing.  

post #3 of 22

Putting is so much confidence, when you got it, you drain them from anywere and it gets fun. I love seeing the face of the guy i am playing againts in league when you drop a 20 footer for a par to tie the hole. The best thing to do is to try to remember those moments when you make putts. Everytime you hit a good putt, after it goes in, try to recall that feeling of the contact and try to remember the sound of the ball going into the hole. Having that sort of memory will help draw you back if you start to loose it. For me, it was two putts from last years scramble. Played on Donald Ross course, i made a 30 footer for birdie, and a 20 footer for birdie. Those putts were solid and perfect, i still can remember them vividly in my mind. I know when i putt i can putt like that. 

post #4 of 22
Thread Starter 

Totally! I've read Bob Rotella and that's what he says too. Always remember the good putts and practice watching them go in in your head. I have done that since reading that Putting Out of Your Mind book, but those were putts that I was making somewhat out of dumb luck. Now that I can actually make putts,and be able to practice them mentally, I'll be deadly!!!
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by saevel25 View Post

Putting is so much confidence, when you got it, you drain them from anywere and it gets fun. I love seeing the face of the guy i am playing againts in league when you drop a 20 footer for a par to tie the hole. The best thing to do is to try to remember those moments when you make putts. Everytime you hit a good putt, after it goes in, try to recall that feeling of the contact and try to remember the sound of the ball going into the hole. Having that sort of memory will help draw you back if you start to loose it. For me, it was two putts from last years scramble. Played on Donald Ross course, i made a 30 footer for birdie, and a 20 footer for birdie. Those putts were solid and perfect, i still can remember them vividly in my mind. I know when i putt i can putt like that. 

post #5 of 22

If you have a nice consistent putting stroke, confidence and some clue about reading greens you're golden.

 

 

 

I miss practicing on real greens and not carpets. Sigh.

post #6 of 22

I enjoy practicing putting too. I've spent the last month or so working on rolling the ball straight down a visible line (I use a piece of string tied to two tees, or just the flagstick shadows in the late evening). This has greatly improved my ability to send the ball where I want it to go on the green. Now working on "seeing" that baseline in my mind out on the course.

 

Need to get better about sticking to my routine. Thanks for the reminder Ben.

post #7 of 22

I too am rediscovering the love of putting.  One thing that helped was that my wife got me a cool new putter for x-mas!  But something occurred to me this past winter as I was shooting some hoops for fun.  You don't always make them, and should not expect to make every one.  When playing basketball, you inevitably miss, but you don't kill yourself over it and it's forgotten as soon as you retrieve the ball.  I want to take that to my game.  Also, I've got some pretty strong fingers and wrists and I was prone to taking a lower arced faster shot, and I'd hit the inside of the rim all the time but half the time it would come back out.  I started taking a softer higher arc and voila!, sinking baskets left and right.  That little bit of finesse and timing helped me paint a great mental picture and gave me more patience to get the ball to the hole.  Went to a practice green in FL when visiting in-laws and I started to love putting again.  It always seems I get frustrated at my golf game towards the late months and somehow find the passion again through the waiting of the winter.

 

By the way, I love the sound of that practice routine.  I think I found myself a new way to practice!

post #8 of 22

One thing that helps me is I normally use 1 ball to practice putting. The reason I do this is if I have 5 or 6 I tend to get fatigued and start to get into bad habits. I take my time during a practice session  and with 1 ball it helps me develop/ingrain my routine and treat each putt like I would on the course. Just like any other form of practice it's the quality, not the quantity. I find this regimen translates well out on the course.

post #9 of 22

If your practicing on carpet, like we do in the north.. ;b, i would recommend practicing the following,

 

Tempo, i use to use an online metranome for this, easy to google..

I like to wrap two rubber bands around my putter, leaving only a small area in the center of the putter, and try to hit as many as i can solid in that spot, if you miss hit, the ball will hit the rubber bands

I could care less of the putter path, as long as the path is the same each time you can putt period. This whole idea of arc to arc, or arc to straight, or straight ot straight, as long as its the same each time you can putt because you know what your doing.

Basically in winter, up north, with out speed of greens or being able to read a green, just work on stroke only. I wouldn't even look up to see how far the ball goes. This can throw you off when you get on a real green.

 

post #10 of 22

That is a serious practice session.  I think you hit the nail on the head in regards to practice like it means something.  I do the same thing with the short game and I think it has helped tremendously around the greens.  People look at me strange as I'm cursing to myself on the practice green when I miss a putt I think I should have made but it is better than mindlessly hitting shot after shot. 

post #11 of 22

To me, it doesn't do anyone good to get upset while practicing. All that does, at least i think, is lead to the person loosing there composure on the course because they link that emotional response to hitting bad shots. I would just step back, and think of why you missed the putt if you noticed, if not then just forget it and continue.

post #12 of 22

Thanks for the post Ben.  I have always enjoyed practicing putting and agree with all the points that you made in regards to "how" to practice and how to make it more fun.

 

I find that playing games is definitely a way to practice and documenting records (for example, counting how many 8 footers you can make in a row without missing) and trying to beat that record everytime translates to executing that putt on the course.

 

Golf is a game that requires an immense amount of muscle memory and "feel" memory and ingraining the feel of your putt while practicing is a great thing!

post #13 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:

Originally Posted by saevel25 View Post

 

I like to wrap two rubber bands around my putter, leaving only a small area in the center of the putter, and try to hit as many as i can solid in that spot, if you miss hit, the ball will hit the rubber bands

I could care less of the putter path, as long as the path is the same each time you can putt period. This whole idea of arc to arc, or arc to straight, or straight ot straight, as long as its the same each time you can putt because you know what your doing.

 

 

 

That is a really cool idea!

 

And sorry leftygolfer but I agree with seavel25 on the anger management. We've got this kid that practices at my club and he is constantly belittling himself and slamming clubs on the range or practice green. Like we've all been discussing here, practice what you want to take to the course. Let the bad shots slide, and move on to the next.

 

By the way lefty, where are you playing poker?


 

post #14 of 22

Yesterday morning I went to the course first thing. It was a cold foggy day, so foggy that if you hit your driver, the ball would disappear, so I just skipped that and walked down the fairway to where I could see the green, barely. 

 

I spent the round hitting two from 175 yards, two from 150 yards, and two from 125 yards.

 

Anyway, this is a putting practice thread, so I had six balls on the green (eventually). I practiced reading the green, lining up the putt, and stroking the putt, practicing in ways that were different than doing it on the practice green. 

 

It was the best putting practice I have ever done--green-reading, approach puts, eight-footers, three-footers, all sorts of breaks and slopes, full putting routine on each putt, all under "real" course conditions.

 

I can't begin to describe the difference between doing all this on the practice green and on the greens around the course, but it is different. Maybe it's that being on the course puts an air of reality on putting that the practice green doesn't.

 

Anyway, this is a good time of year for you to try out something like this. 

 

 

I finally got caught up to as I was approaching the eighth green. I let a solo play through and finished the round unhurried.

post #15 of 22
Thread Starter 

I've tweaked the routine a little. On the 100 short putts I will subtract a putt each time I miss.

post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben View Post

I've tweaked the routine a little. On the 100 short putts I will subtract a putt each time I miss.



Lol I'd be out there all day..

 

post #17 of 22

sounds like a solid routine to me...

post #18 of 22

I like this idea because it's a quick and easy set up. The practice game I do takes a bit to set up and some days, I just don't feel like setting it up which makes me suffer in the long run. I'll try this next time I get to the range.

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