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Nerves While Putting


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Lately I've been struggling with what could probably be described as the "yips" while putting.  When I'm playing by myself, or just my girlfriend and I, or on the practice green I feel like my putting is pretty solid; I have a good feel for the pace and I take my time lining up the put and usually average less than a 2 putt for the round.  However, the last few times I've played with either strangers or casual acquaintances I've completely lost my feel for pace and I find myself rushing through my process of lining up the putt.  Recent example, Wednesday I played in my work league (9 hole league) and shot a 46, I had two 3 putts and two 4 putts, I've was leaving almost every uphill putt way short and blasting almost every downhill putt way past.  Usually within a hole or two I'll start to dial in my feel for pace, but in this case it actually got worse through the round, both 3 putts and both 4 putts came in 4 of the last 5 holes.

For those of you who have dealt with similar situations or have helped others with these problems, what are some of the calming/focusing techniques and tips you've used that have helped?  Other than only playing golf by myself or with my girlfriend Lol.   

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Are you playing the same course? Is the practice green an actual representation of what you face on the course? It could be your putting stroke. 

Start practicing like you play. Take your time, try to bring in the feel like the putt counts for something. Also, try to work on lag putting. Try to get every putt inside 10% of the distance you are hitting putts from. So a 50-FT putt, try to get the ball inside 5-ft. 

 

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Similar issue here. I went to a counterbalanced broomstick (I think 38"). Cleveland putter for a while from a garden variety 33" blade putter.  The huge length and weight system shocked my system enough where I am not yipping.

Not saying I have great speed control but have reasonably more control.

In short, depending on how desperate you are - shock your system. It might work.

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I've definitely got a nervy stroke when it comes to anything outside of 6 inches and it's for par. Stroke becomes shakier than a folding chair at a Weight Watchers meeting....

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The next time you are in that situation remember to breathe and try to feel your routine every time you putt. I would tell you to do a bunch of drills or something but it sounds like the unfamiliarity of the situation and your subsequent rushing is the real issue. If you don't have a routine, get one and do it every time. It doesn't have to be long, it just has to get you a sense of familiar comfort so that you can focus on the task at hand. 

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1 hour ago, saevel25 said:

Are you playing the same course? Is the practice green an actual representation of what you face on the course? It could be your putting stroke. 

Start practicing like you play. Take your time, try to bring in the feel like the putt counts for something. Also, try to work on lag putting. Try to get every putt inside 10% of the distance you are hitting putts from. So a 50-FT putt, try to get the ball inside 5-ft. 

 

Thanks for the advice!  The problem definitely travels with me, I usually play one of three courses around me and have had issues at all three.  I'm sure there are plenty of technical aspects of my putting that I could try and firm up with some instruction.  

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It's just a putt. Don't take it to seriously, and don't pay any attention to those folks around you. Don't let anyone intimidate you. Strengthen your mental game. Think positive at all times. 

I tell a lot golfers that every golfer, regardless of their talent, hdcp level have all made the the same mistakes. Everyone hits bad shots, and everyone misses putts. Even the the easier ones.

Just play, and think your way through your own game.  

Let the pga pros worry about missing that 2 footer that might cost them $500k or more.. 

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2 hours ago, campbellj21 said:

For those of you who have dealt with similar situations or have helped others with these problems, what are some of the calming/focusing techniques and tips you've used that have helped? 

I would say "preparation". I don't think there are easy solutions to calm yourself down. You are most likely anxious in the situation because you want to do well with your new playing companions and you are not confident of the outcome of the putt. 

Putting practice is easy. Learn as much as you can. My new course has challenged me and I have started to get good at observing the grain. Practice with purpose as they say. There is a guy on here @JuanTheGolfer who wrote a book that I bought last summer when I want to improve my putting. It is intense and I did not get through all of the routines, but I am a better putter. 

Most of the time I look forward to stroking the putt as I am more confident now. When I am rushed and do not spend more than 5 minutes on the putting green before a round, I get nervous as I know that the speed is somewhat unknown to me. It is a great feeling to be looking at a 15 to 25 foot birdie put that has a chance of going in. However if you know that it could be a possible 3 putt due to inadequate preparation, then that is nerve-racking.

IMG_0621.jpg

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3 hours ago, colin007 said:

I've definitely got a nervy stroke when it comes to anything outside of 6 inches and it's for par. Stroke becomes shakier than a folding chair at a Weight Watchers meeting....

Yo - we should get that nevry stroke out and play a round soon.  Thoughts?

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1 hour ago, RFKFREAK said:

Yo - we should get that nevry stroke out and play a round soon.  Thoughts?

School starts next week for me, season is likely over

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10 hours ago, campbellj21 said:

Lately I've been struggling with what could probably be described as the "yips" while putting.  When I'm playing by myself, or just my girlfriend and I, or on the practice green I feel like my putting is pretty solid; I have a good feel for the pace and I take my time lining up the put and usually average less than a 2 putt for the round.  However, the last few times I've played with either strangers or casual acquaintances I've completely lost my feel for pace and I find myself rushing through my process of lining up the putt.  Recent example, Wednesday I played in my work league (9 hole league) and shot a 46, I had two 3 putts and two 4 putts, I've was leaving almost every uphill putt way short and blasting almost every downhill putt way past.  Usually within a hole or two I'll start to dial in my feel for pace, but in this case it actually got worse through the round, both 3 putts and both 4 putts came in 4 of the last 5 holes.

For those of you who have dealt with similar situations or have helped others with these problems, what are some of the calming/focusing techniques and tips you've used that have helped?  Other than only playing golf by myself or with my girlfriend Lol.   

Shank a putt. Then we’ll talk.

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1 hour ago, iacas said:

I watched a guy double-hit a putt once. First green, too.

Damn...that’s some serious tension...

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14 hours ago, iacas said:

Just hit a good putt.

Control what you can control, and hit a putt on the line you intend with the speed you intend. Everything after that is up to chance.

^^This @campbellj21! Don’t change anything from your normal routine. Just read it, setup and putt. I just focus on the back of the ball and hit.

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Our practice greens have been closed this whole covid time. Makes putting on the first few holes a guessing game. Where/how do you practice your putting?

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4 hours ago, AlDena said:

Our practice greens have been closed this whole covid time. Makes putting on the first few holes a guessing game. Where/how do you practice your putting?

Pre-round I'll hit a few putts on the practice green where I'm playing (when available), the bulk of my practice happens at the course I play most of my rounds at because I also enjoy their driving range.  I usually like to hit a few long downhill putts, a few long uphill putts to get a feel for pace; and then I'll hit a few mid-range and short puts both up and downhill (pre-round routine).  When I'm just going to the range and the putting green, I usually setup for long putts and practice trying to get them close, then I practice actually finishing out the two putt.  I then spend at least a little bit of time practicing knocking in short putts as well.

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