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Putting Strategy

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This is a continuation of my putting woes.  So I land on the green about 12 feet from the hole.  I have an uphill and across putt (see diagram, the horizontal lines represent constant elevation like a topographical map).  If I hit it exactly right the ball falls in the hole, but if the line or break is just off a bit I miss the hole and the ball rolls the other way leaving me with a similar (possibly farther) putt from the other side.

I have run into these geometries before only to go back and forth never getting anywhere close to the hole.  In the meantime strokes keep racking up.  The only way out is to hit the ball horizontally so that it is directly below the hole and on the next shot one has a straight uphill putt.

However, I discovered another solution.  If it hit the ball more up than across, I will have a chance to hole-out, while leaving me with a better second putt if I miss (see diagram).

All of this raises more questions.  Is there such a thing as putting strategies?

PS. How do I embed the above images?

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I think that you found your own solution.  You weren't playing enough break, which resulted in too much speed when the ball passed the hole, and it resulted in a long downhill run out.  This type of putt has to played in an attempt to die the ball very near the hole, and that can mean aiming 45° or more above the hole - essentially making it a mostly uphill putt which will then break and run down toward the hole.

I'm not sure that it's so much of a strategy as it is just making the right read then matching the necessary line of putt to the read.

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You have either a clueless or malevolent greenskeeper cutting the holes if you encounter this with any frequency.

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8 hours ago, Howling Coyote said:

This is a continuation of my putting woes.  So I land on the green about 12 feet from the hole.  I have an uphill and across putt (see diagram, the horizontal lines represent constant elevation like a topographical map).  If I hit it exactly right the ball falls in the hole, but if the line or break is just off a bit I miss the hole and the ball rolls the other way leaving me with a similar (possibly farther) putt from the other side.

I have run into these geometries before only to go back and forth never getting anywhere close to the hole.  In the meantime strokes keep racking up.  The only way out is to hit the ball horizontally so that it is directly below the hole and on the next shot one has a straight uphill putt.

However, I discovered another solution.  If it hit the ball more up than across, I will have a chance to hole-out, while leaving me with a better second putt if I miss (see diagram).

All of this raises more questions.  Is there such a thing as putting strategies?

PS. How do I embed the above images?

Take an AimPoint class if there is one in your area. It makes reading this kind of putt, and any putt for that matter, very straightforward.

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@Fourputt nailed it. You can always take out a certain amount of break by adding speed but the faster the ball is travelling, the smaller the hole is in practical terms - (Search topics on "capture speed" to learn more about this) - and the less likely it is to go in, plus a miss will leave you a LONG come back putt.

Learn to read your putts for the appropriate speed, generally you want your misses to go no more than 18"-20" past the hole.

Generally speaking, most people read way too little break in their putts and either hit them too fast to try to blow through the break or missed them by a mile on the low side.

When facing a putt with a lot of break, make sure you visualize the putt entering the hole from the side, not the front, of the cup.

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I think you hit on the strategy; don't try to make those putts, try to leave them in a good spot to make the 2nd. Occasionally the first attempt will go in but when faced with a perilous situation, leaving with 2 putts should be considered a "win."

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Scenario 1: Try to make the putt with proper capture speed. You'll have a makeable second if you miss.

Scenario 2: Complain to the head pro or superintendent if these hole locations where you can't keep a ball within three feet exist on your course far too frequently. That's not how golf courses should be set up.

You can't embed PDFs.

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My only strategy with difficult hole placements like that is 3 putt avoidance.

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Just to reference a really good thread.

Hit a put with optimal speed and your 2nd putt will be very close to the hole.

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4 minutes ago, saevel25 said:

Just to reference a really good thread.

Hit a put with optimal speed and your 2nd putt will be very close to the hole.

And if it's not possible to keep the ball close to the hole, and particularly if this happens regularly, then your head pro and superintendent need to hear about it.

And by "possible" I don't mean by you particularly (you might be a poor putter), but by a good putter. Or if you can put the ball by the hole and roll it a few inches with your finger and it rolls away, that's a good sign that they need to hear about it.

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HC. those diagrams don't represent real scenerios.

Those curves will happen on severe uphill fast greens . Balls don't typically go uphill 12 feet then come back down 14 feet .

the second diagram curvature will happen more if the ball at 3 oclock . not at 5 oclock. You are basically putting uphill on a planar section right? You drawn it like there is more contour then it is possible.

Edited by dchoye
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2 minutes ago, dchoye said:

HC. those diagrams don't represent real scenerios.

Those curves will happen on severe uphill fast greens . Balls don't typically go uphill 12 feet then come back down 14 feet .

the second diagram curvature will happen more if the ball at 3 oclock . not at 5 oclock. You are basically putting uphill on a planar section right? You drawn it like there is more contour then it is possible.

It's just an abstract idea to discuss a topic on should you take break out or should you maximize your chance of making a putt.

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14 minutes ago, saevel25 said:

It's just an abstract idea to discuss a topic on should you take break out or should you maximize your chance of making a putt.

I don't think so. He's asking about balls that roll away if you don't make them, at any speed, IIRC.

He's saying the slow one at least leaves you with a straighter uphill putt, while the one hit more firmly leaves you to the side and putting up the slope at a greater angle. I think.

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18 hours ago, SavvySwede said:

You have either a clueless or malevolent greenskeeper cutting the holes if you encounter this with any frequency.

Hahahahahaha...

10 hours ago, boogielicious said:

Take an AimPoint class if there is one in your area. It makes reading this kind of putt, and any putt for that matter, very straightforward.

What's an aim point class?

18 hours ago, Fourputt said:

I think that you found your own solution.  You weren't playing enough break, which resulted in too much speed when the ball passed the hole, and it resulted in a long downhill run out.  This type of putt has to played in an attempt to die the ball very near the hole, and that can mean aiming 45° or more above the hole - essentially making it a mostly uphill putt which will then break and run down toward the hole.

No I was trying to provide enough power to go past the hole by about 1-2' except that there is a critical slope between where the ball starts at and where the hole is (Critical slope: minimum slope such that a ball placed at that will location will automatically roll downhill).  In this case the line must be good and one must hit it on the line.  However, in my case my line was off by about 1" high.  Probably I was expecting a small amount of break.  In this case there is no margin for error, either its in or you have a long putt back.  It is not a forgiving shot.

8 hours ago, iacas said:

Scenario 1: Try to make the putt with proper capture speed. You'll have a makeable second if you miss.

You can't embed PDFs.

What can you embed?

6 hours ago, dchoye said:

HC. those diagrams don't represent real scenerios.

Those curves will happen on severe uphill fast greens . Balls don't typically go uphill 12 feet then come back down 14 feet .

the second diagram curvature will happen more if the ball at 3 oclock . not at 5 oclock. You are basically putting uphill on a planar section right? You drawn it like there is more contour then it is possible.

No it was real.  The thing was the slope did not appear so bad, until I tried it.  There were 2 others in my group that had the same problem.  A week later I ran into the same situation and this time tried scenario 2 and I almost holed out with 1 putt.  It worked from the standpoint that it left me with a straight uphill putt on the second shot.

So it seems the answer is there is no such thing as putting strategy except reading the green?

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9 minutes ago, Howling Coyote said:

What can you embed?

Click the "How To" menu at the top for several quick tutorials.

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26 minutes ago, Howling Coyote said:

What's an aim point class?

Plain and simply - a very effective system for reading greens.  http://www.aimpointgolf.com/#/locateInstructors

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31 minutes ago, Howling Coyote said:

Hahahahahaha...

What's an aim point class?

No I was trying to provide enough power to go past the hole by about 1-2' except that there is a critical slope between where the ball starts at and where the hole is (Critical slope: minimum slope such that a ball placed at that will location will automatically roll downhill).  In this case the line must be good and one must hit it on the line.  However, in my case my line was off by about 1" high.  Probably I was expecting a small amount of break.  In this case there is no margin for error, either its in or you have a long putt back.  It is not a forgiving shot.

What can you embed?

No it was real.  The thing was the slope did not appear so bad, until I tried it.  There were 2 others in my group that had the same problem.  A week later I ran into the same situation and this time tried scenario 2 and I almost holed out with 1 putt.  It worked from the standpoint that it left me with a straight uphill putt on the second shot.

So it seems the answer is there is no such thing as putting strategy except reading the green?

I would focus your attention on learning to control speed. IMO, that's the quickest way to lower your putts per round. I'll post a couple good practice drills a little later, kinda pressed for time right now.

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37 minutes ago, Howling Coyote said:

Hahahahahaha...

What's an aim point class?

No I was trying to provide enough power to go past the hole by about 1-2' except that there is a critical slope between where the ball starts at and where the hole is (Critical slope: minimum slope such that a ball placed at that will location will automatically roll downhill).  In this case the line must be good and one must hit it on the line.  However, in my case my line was off by about 1" high.  Probably I was expecting a small amount of break.  In this case there is no margin for error, either its in or you have a long putt back.  It is not a forgiving shot.

What can you embed?

No it was real.  The thing was the slope did not appear so bad, until I tried it.  There were 2 others in my group that had the same problem.  A week later I ran into the same situation and this time tried scenario 2 and I almost holed out with 1 putt.  It worked from the standpoint that it left me with a straight uphill putt on the second shot.

So it seems the answer is there is no such thing as putting strategy except reading the green?

If that is real, you must be playing on oakmount type greens with stimp over 15 with crazy hole locations

37 minutes ago, Howling Coyote said:

Hahahahahaha...?

Edited by dchoye

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