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Putting - DO NOT Accelerate Through the Ball


iacas

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Does any Tour pro have peak velocity after contact with ball?

Probably, but they're not in the majority, and not every PGA Tour player is a great putter.

Golfers don't make it to the PGA Tour because of their putting.

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Probably, but they're not in the majority, and not every PGA Tour player is a great putter.

Golfers don't make it to the PGA Tour because of their putting.

I might be going out on a limb saying this but with this in mind i honestly think that if I had the long game of Rory, Tiger, DJ or really any top 20 PGA tour player but my putting ability i would like to think i could keep my tour card.

A better way of thinking about the claim would be if i had to putt for DJ every round for a year on the tour (with him playing tee to green) i think that between us we would keep our tour card but would never win or feature in  the top ten most likely.

Do you guys think that is a reasonable claim or totally mad? Interested to hear

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Do you guys think that is a reasonable claim or totally mad? Interested to hear

Not really the topic here, but yes, amateurs putt better than generally they think, and PGA Tour pros putt worse than they generally think.

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  • 4 weeks later...
Just watched Golf Channel Academy with Tom Watson. He said the most important thing in putting is accelerating through the ball. I know his putting stroke fell off as he aged, but he was considered one of the best in his time. Eight Majors seems too agree.
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Just watched Golf Channel Academy with Tom Watson. He said the most important thing in putting is accelerating through the ball. I know his putting stroke fell off as he aged, but he was considered one of the best in his time. Eight Majors seems too agree.

Im sure you have been around this forum long enough to know that ball striking is what separates pro's from everyone else. They win because they give themselves good chances to make birdie. Tom's putting cost him a the Open a few years ago on the back 9. Maybe if he putted like Erik taught he would have 12 majors.

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Im sure you have been around this forum long enough to know that ball striking is what separates pro's from everyone else. They win because they give themselves good chances to make birdie. Tom's putting cost him a the Open a few years ago on the back 9. Maybe if he putted like Erik taught he would have 12 majors.

Ummm.. Let us say that striking the ball is what separates the pros from everyone else, it doesn't mean that it is not at all possible that putting is what separates some pros from "each other".. Anyway, It is still interesting that you talk about ball striking and then you conclude that if he had a better putting stroke (the one that Erik teaches) he would have win 4 more majors! (I'm sure Erik teaches a great putting stroke, but come on man... I really hope you are pulling our chain!)

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Im sure you have been around this forum long enough to know that ball striking is what separates pro's from everyone else. They win because they give themselves good chances to make birdie. Tom's putting cost him a the Open a few years ago on the back 9. Maybe if he putted like Erik taught he would have 12 majors.

I think it's more likely he already has a putting stroke similar to the one I like… the vast majority of the game's better putters does. :-) In other words, he probably doesn't accelerate through the ball. He just thinks he does… because when he feels like he doesn't accelerate, he hits a horrible par putt on the 72nd hole at a major at age 59. :P

But seriously, @vangator , pros give advice that is actually incorrect (as in factually wrong, not an opinion) all the time. Feel isn't real, and pros - more than others - only know what something is like "to them."

The worst (or biggest) example of that is the ball flight laws…

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I was joking about the putting stroke comment kinda. Also putting doesn't really separate pros all that much. Last year Tiger was 22nd on strokes gain putting and had 5 wins. Ahead of him was David Lynn,Colt Knost,Chris Kirk, Fred Jacobson, David Hearn, Peter Hanson,Luke Donald(winless),Doug LaBelle II,Richard Lee,Bruce Molder,Russell Henley(1 win), Sergio, James Driscoll, Phil (1 win),Arron Baddeley, Brandt Snedeker (1 win), Stephen Ames, Steve Stricker, Greg Chalmers was first also winless.
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Just watched Jack putting. Looks like he's accelerating. [VIDEO]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZsGuyvlGic[/VIDEO] Tiger Woods. Looks like he's accelerating. [VIDEO]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HaWAXsOJ0s[/VIDEO] Dave Stockton. Looks like he's accelerating. [VIDEO]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8YsSCg185o[/VIDEO] These may be illusions and if real numbers could be taken it may show something different, but it looks like they are all slightly accelerating just before impact.
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Just watched Jack putting. Looks like he's accelerating.

Tiger Woods. Looks like he's accelerating.

Dave Stockton. Looks like he's accelerating.

These may be illusions and if real numbers could be taken it may show something different, but it looks like they are all slightly accelerating just before impact.

Okay. Ignore my advice then, and continue to go by what things look like.

It's perfectly okay by me.

P.S. Again, modern green speeds are faster, too. There's no doubt Arnold Palmer likely had a little more "pop" and acceleration in his stroke. Unless you play on stimp 6 greens, though… I'd be cautious about that.

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If you look at the graphs that Erik put up on page one, the acceleration is TO the ball, not necessarily THROUGH the ball.  The key is to never DECELERATE before contact (and I think Watson used that word) because that only happens because you made it happen.  In a perfect pendulum swing max velocity happens at the bottom of the swing, naturally, unless you interfere.

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If you look at the graphs that Erik put up on page one, the acceleration is TO the ball, not necessarily THROUGH the ball.  The key is to never DECELERATE before contact (and I think Watson used that word) because that only happens because you made it happen.  In a perfect pendulum swing max velocity happens at the bottom of the swing, naturally, unless you interfere.

You certainly aren't supposed to intentionally decelerate prior to impact, and you are correct that the max velocity would ideally occur at the bottom of the swing.  However, a lot of people (myself included) will put the ball slightly forward of center, meaning we're catching it slightly on the upswing .... hence, deceleration.

You don't want to drive the ball down into the ground, so having the ball a hair forward of center makes a lot of sense.

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Okay. Ignore my advice then, and continue to go by what things look like. It's perfectly okay by me. P.S. Again, modern green speeds are faster, too. There's no doubt Arnold Palmer likely had a little more "pop" and acceleration in his stroke. Unless you play on stimp 6 greens, though… I'd be cautious about that.

Just wanted to how you'd comment on these 3 above average putters.

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If you look at the graphs that Erik put up on page one, the acceleration is TO the ball, not necessarily THROUGH the ball.  The key is to never DECELERATE before contact (and I think Watson used that word) because that only happens because you made it happen.  In a perfect pendulum swing max velocity happens at the bottom of the swing, naturally, unless you interfere.

From the OP,"The best putters almost all tend to have a decelerating putter head at or even slightly before impact." Unless extra force is applied, the putter head will decelerate when contacting the ball.

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From the OP, "In virtually all good putting strokes, the ball is hit with a slight positive angle of attack (AoA) - about 2-3° or so. This positive AoA helps minimize backspin, produce no spin, or even to produce a tiny bit of forward spin if the dynamic loft is 1-2°. But the point is: the ball is struck while the putter head is ascending, or after low point." Stan Utley talks about a downward press (at about the 5:20 mark) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eAB7eYvwk9M&index;=3&list;=PLED329243310131B2 I find it easier to hit the ball like Stan Utley mentions. The best putter I know (he is a pro) hits the ball on a slightly ascending stroke. He definitely seems to accelerate through the ball.
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From the OP,"The best putters almost all tend to have a decelerating putter head at or even slightly before impact." Unless extra force is applied, the putter head will decelerate when contacting the ball.

Obviously, but that's not what we're talking about. Strike the ball on the upstroke of a pendulum and you have decel prior to the ball. I just make sure the ball is forward of my low point and make a nice wide backswing then just let it swing through. Much more consistent. I'll go out on a limb here and posit that the putting stroke is similar to a full swing insofar as it's paradoxical nature. It must be made in a controlled manner but at the same time it must be free flowing and made with a clear mind, IOW you have to let go and let it swing. Too many people make the assumption that because it's a smaller and easier motion that they can manipulate or steer it which just leads to all kinds of inconsistency in distance and line.

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