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Putting - that one lightbulb moment


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To put this post in context, I have never been a good putter. In the middle of an AimPoint lesson, the instructor advised me to get a putting lesson, I frequently cut across the ball, raise my head, hit the ball rather than rolling etc. Making anything outside of 6 feet is a rarity, and I'll three putt at least twice a round. That probably gives a good summary. As a 12 handicap, it's comfortably the worst part of my game, and not for the want of practice - it's just never got better.

So, about a week and a half ago, I started looking at putting left-hand low after seeing Rory trying it in an attempt to banish his flatstick woes (http://www.pgatour.com/tourreport/2016/03/02/rory-mcilroy-putting-grip-change.html). I've spent about an hour and a half on my indoor putting mat, a couple of sessions on the practice greens and two rounds working on it and it's a complete game-changer. I'm now rolling putts at the hole and I'd say about 8/10 have a chance, whereas it was closer to 1/10 beforehand. Granted, that's partly a confidence thing, but I'm definitely no longer cutting across the ball. In my most recent round (http://www.gamegolf.com/player/benpage101/round/810489), I would say I made five putts (8ft plus) that I wouldn't have with the normal grip. Additionally, the fact that I don't feel too comfortable with my distance control means that I have to use the pendulum stroke, reducing the likelihood that I hit at the ball. There are still a few occasions where I don't quite get it right, but it's been miles better.

By no means is this something that'll work for everyone, but has anyone else had that one moment where things suddenly click? If so, what was it?

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Always nice when you have an idea that works!

Just recently I figured out if I slide my left forearm along the left side of my abdomen, then slide it right back, that I could keep the face online easily, and hit stupid good putts. 

Unfortunately, I also discovered just now that this was completely 100% cheating. Thinking about it, I guess it should have been obvious going from missing 3 footers, to getting within a few ft from almost anywhere the last couple days.

Was so excited about bringing it to the course. Bah.

 

 

 

 

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I recently went for and edel putter fitting and that to me was a light bulb moment. I was amazed how poorly my current putter fits. Also the fitter changed my grip which was kind of another bulb.  I wasn't aware how much differnt my grip should be compared to every other club in the bag. 

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2 hours ago, b101 said:

To put this post in context, I have never been a good putter. In the middle of an AimPoint lesson, the instructor advised me to get a putting lesson, I frequently cut across the ball, raise my head, hit the ball rather than rolling etc. Making anything outside of 6 feet is a rarity, and I'll three putt at least twice a round. That probably gives a good summary. As a 12 handicap, it's comfortably the worst part of my game, and not for the want of practice - it's just never got better.

So, about a week and a half ago, I started looking at putting left-hand low after seeing Rory trying it in an attempt to banish his flatstick woes (http://www.pgatour.com/tourreport/2016/03/02/rory-mcilroy-putting-grip-change.html). I've spent about an hour and a half on my indoor putting mat, a couple of sessions on the practice greens and two rounds working on it and it's a complete game-changer. I'm now rolling putts at the hole and I'd say about 8/10 have a chance, whereas it was closer to 1/10 beforehand. Granted, that's partly a confidence thing, but I'm definitely no longer cutting across the ball. In my most recent round (http://www.gamegolf.com/player/benpage101/round/810489), I would say I made five putts (8ft plus) that I wouldn't have with the normal grip. Additionally, the fact that I don't feel too comfortable with my distance control means that I have to use the pendulum stroke, reducing the likelihood that I hit at the ball. There are still a few occasions where I don't quite get it right, but it's been miles better.

By no means is this something that'll work for everyone, but has anyone else had that one moment where things suddenly click? If so, what was it?

Good to hear. Stick with it the whole season even if you have a bad round or two. That will pay off.

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Moving the ball forward (past the low point), making (and trusting) a much bigger backswing and not accelerating into the ball all work hand in hand and have changed my distance control from reasonably good to scary good. 

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49 minutes ago, Jakester23 said:

I recently went for and edel putter fitting and that to me was a light bulb moment.

For me it was the fitting process. I was really happy that my instincts were correct on already having a putter I could aim dead on. The heavier putter head with the counterbalance was a big eye opener. It was instant the distance control I got. 

 

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(edited)
3 hours ago, saevel25 said:

For me it was the fitting process. I was really happy that my instincts were correct on already having a putter I could aim dead on. The heavier putter head with the counterbalance was a big eye opener. It was instant the distance control I got. 

 

Meant to multi-quote @Jakester23 as well, but it went weird...

I recently went for and edel putter fitting and that to me was a light bulb moment. I was amazed how poorly my current putter fits. Also the fitter changed my grip which was kind of another bulb.  I wasn't aware how much differnt my grip should be compared to every other club in the bag. 

Yep, had been through that as well and got my SeeMore - still wasn't making the most of it! What did you both have before, out of interest? To quote the fitter, I'd been drawn to "the worst possible putter for my stroke" - a thin gripped, Odyssey blade. He also recommended I get a putting lesson - which I did and didn't really help :-(

4 hours ago, bm85 said:

Always nice when you have an idea that works!

Just recently I figured out if I slide my left forearm along the left side of my abdomen, then slide it right back, that I could keep the face online easily, and hit stupid good putts. 

Unfortunately, I also discovered just now that this was completely 100% cheating. Thinking about it, I guess it should have been obvious going from missing 3 footers, to getting within a few ft from almost anywhere the last couple days.

Was so excited about bringing it to the course. Bah.

Sounds very Adam Scott - if he can work it out without the long putter, I'm sure you'll find the thing that sticks! Keep it up :-)

3 hours ago, Ernest Jones said:

Moving the ball forward (past the low point), making (and trusting) a much bigger backswing and not accelerating into the ball all work hand in hand and have changed my distance control from reasonably good to scary good. 

All really good tips - distance control is going to be my next thing to work on and I'll definitely be bearing these points in mind. If I can get good distance control with the accuracy I've been seeing recently, I'll be delighted!

Edited by b101
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1 hour ago, b101 said:

Meant to multi-quote @Jakester23 as well, but it went weird...

Yep, had been through that as well and got my SeeMore - still wasn't making the most of it! What did you both have before, out of interest? To quote the fitter, I'd been drawn to "the worst possible putter for my stroke" - a thin gripped, Odyssey blade. He also recommended I get a putting lesson - which I did and didn't really help :-(

Sounds very Adam Scott - if he can work it out without the long putter, I'm sure you'll find the thing that sticks! Keep it up :-)

All really good tips - distance control is going to be my next thing to work on and I'll definitely be bearing these points in mind. If I can get good distance control with the accuracy I've been seeing recently, I'll be delighted!

I currently have a Ping blade style putter. I just had my fitting a few weeks ago so I don't have my Edel yet. Hopefully next week I'll get it. The putter I have now I aimed something like 14 inches right of what I perceived was straight. The one I'm getting is similar in shape with  different alignment lines. If I'm remember correctly my Ping has a 360 g head weight with a quarter toe hang and no counterbalance. My Edel is 340 g with 110 g shaft weight. The edel is torque balanced so it's toe up I think. The Ping has a plumber neck. The Edel's neck is straight into the top of the putter.

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20 minutes ago, Jakester23 said:

I currently have a Ping blade style putter. I just had my fitting a few weeks ago so I don't have my Edel yet. Hopefully next week I'll get it. The putter I have now I aimed something like 14 inches right of what I perceived was straight. The one I'm getting is similar in shape with  different alignment lines. If I'm remember correctly my Ping has a 360 g head weight with a quarter toe hang and no counterbalance. My Edel is 340 g with 110 g shaft weight. The edel is torque balanced so it's toe up I think. The Ping has a plumber neck. The Edel's neck is straight into the top of the putter.

Sounds a pretty major difference - 14 inches right from how far away?! I'd be really interested to see pictures and hear how you get on with it. Sounds more comprehensive than my fitting, which was basically just getting head shape, shaft length and grip thickness right. Don't get me wrong, I love my SeeMore and am very happy with it, but the Edel fitting sounds very thorough! 

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11 minutes ago, b101 said:

Sounds a pretty major difference - 14 inches right from how far away?! I'd be really interested to see pictures and hear how you get on with it. Sounds more comprehensive than my fitting, which was basically just getting head shape, shaft length and grip thickness right. Don't get me wrong, I love my SeeMore and am very happy with it, but the Edel fitting sounds very thorough! 

14 inches right at 6ft.  After seeing that I know why I struggle with left to right putts. My distance control with the Edel was much much better also. Having the weight in and above my hands made me gauge speed 10x better. 

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Just now, Jakester23 said:

14 inches right at 6ft.  After seeing that I know why I struggle with left to right putts. My distance control with the Edel was much much better also. Having the weight in and above my hands made me gauge speed 10x better. 

Wow... that's a ridiculous amount! Was that just due to sight lines? Amazing to think that they can have that much of an effect.

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2 minutes ago, b101 said:

Wow... that's a ridiculous amount! Was that just due to sight lines? Amazing to think that they can have that much of an effect.

Yes the alignment lines and shaft offset. It was cool how moving alignment lines changed where I aimed. He put the line on the top line of the putter which made me aim left. He put one on the back line (the spot that sticks out past the top line) which made me aim right. We ended up trying both which made me aim straight. It was amazing.

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20 hours ago, b101 said:

Wow... that's a ridiculous amount! Was that just due to sight lines? Amazing to think that they can have that much of an effect.

That's not a large amount of aim (and it's at 12 feet, because the laser travels the six feet twice) in my experience.

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21 minutes ago, iacas said:

That's not a large amount of aim (and it's at 12 feet, because the laser travels the six feet twice) in my experience.

Sounds pretty scary given the cup isn't very big... I have enough to worry about already with my putting!

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I too just switched to that left hand putting grip. Made a world of difference, for the better, in my putting. 

However, my biggest eye opener, light bulb moment was swing info I recieved from an obscure range pro who worked at the course I was frequenting at the time. 

He told me that once I took my stance, to think I was on a baseball diamond at home plate. My alignment was through the pitcher's mound,  past 2nd base, into center field. On my down swing, just visualize the first part of my swing going towards right field. That visualization fixed quite a few swing flaws I had at the time, and  had me scoring in the 70s more than I ever had before. Since I was a pretty good baseball player, quite at home on a baseball field, the visualization came natural. 

I shared this info several years later on another golf forum where their resident swing guru chastised, and ridiculed me for sharing the info. Said it was bad information. I left that forum, but returned a few weeks later only to find this same swing guru using the same information. The only thing he changed was to swing towards 1st base instead of right field. I guessed that he had just fine tuned the original info. :whistle:

Edited by Patch
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I'm not sure it's a light bulb moment....

I'd been occasionally pulling short putts. I discovered that when I put a new grip on my putter, the face was slightly closed in relation to the new grip. Reinstalled new grip correctly. It really helps when the flat face off the putter grip is perpendicular to the putter face!

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On 09/04/2016 at 7:28 PM, Patch said:

I too just switched to that left hand putting grip. Made a world of difference, for the better, in my putting. 

He told me that once I took my stance, to think I was on a baseball diamond at home plate. My alignment was through the pitcher's mound,  past 2nd base, into center field. On my down swing, just visualize the first part of my swing going towards right field.

Glad the left hand low is working for you! It's amazing how many people I've met who say the same thing; that it made an instant difference to face control. 

I don't have a clue about the baseball bit, but I think it sounds like it's stopping you cut across the ball? Almost like trying to hit a draw with the putter? (Incidentally, that was one of the bits of advice from my putting lesson - worked for a bit, but was only ever going to be a quick fix).

On 10/04/2016 at 1:46 PM, RH31 said:

I'm not sure it's a light bulb moment....

I'd been occasionally pulling short putts. I discovered that when I put a new grip on my putter, the face was slightly closed in relation to the new grip. Reinstalled new grip correctly. It really helps when the flat face off the putter grip is perpendicular to the putter face!

Given what iacas said about face alignment often being off anyway, I can see how that would have made a huge difference.


As for me, I had another really good putting round yesterday - 1.83 putts per green (33 putts) with 44% (8) GIR on a really tough links course with some very sloping greens. For me, that's awesome and shows how much my putting has come on. Annoyingly, I did have one three putt when I underhit my first putt, but there was also much improved distance control and I continued to hole out from decent range. Now that the motion is feeling more natural, I'm starting to feel like my shoulders rock through the putt a bit more, rather than leading with the arms and also that my eyes don't follow the ball. 

According to Game Golf, my putting stats were as follows:

Made good putts from: 25 feet, 14 feet, 17 feet, 11 feet. 

Two putted from: 60 feet, 25 feet, 34 feet, 75 feet, 42 feet (off green), 26 feet, 31 feet, 32 feet, 35 feet, 42 feet and 51 feet. I'm particularly pleased with these stats as most of them were lagged to tap-in distance. Given the lengths of putt that I had, I'm delighted to have only three putted once (from 35 feet) and know that that was due to a mishit. I didn't have my best ball-striking day and my putting really helped keep things together.

Link to the round on Game Golf for anyone who fancies a look at a great round with three atrociously managed holes! http://www.gamegolf.com/player/benpage101/round/823290

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