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Golf Putting

Golf Putting: It is the easiest skill to learn but the hardest to master. To help you master the putt and get your ball in the hole with fewer strokes, here are some golf putting tips.

    It seems so easy. The hole's just a few feet away, and all you have to do is tap the ball in. As you bend over your ball and line up the shot, it looks like you can't miss. You pull the club back and give the ball a nudge. As your ball skips away from the hole, you can't believe it. You curse your club, your ball, the green, the wind and everything else under the sun. However, the real culprit of your three-putts is probably your putting technique. So, rather than buying a new putter or a lucky rabbits foot, try fixing your golf putting form. Here are a few simple tips you should try on for size.

Minimize Head and Eye Movement

    Your eyes provide your body with the information necessary to align your putts. So, if you are moving your head and shifting your eyes, you'll have a tough time developing consistency (Hung). When you move your head and eyes, your body perceives the target as shifting. Getting the ball into the hole is hard enough without tricking your body into thinking that the hole is moving. To increase your accuracy, try to keep your head and eyes still during your putting stroke. Your scorecard will thank you for it.

Good Posture Isn't Just for Looks

    To make your job of putting even easier, make sure you have perfect posture. Having your head up, back straight, hips tilted and knees flexed, positions you perfectly to have a smooth, effortless stroke (Puett). Starting with good posture prevents you from having to compensate. The less you have to compensate the straighter and more consistently you'll putt. Oh, and good form also looks good on the green.

Hands Ahead

    One of the most fundamental and essential elements of a putt is keeping your hands in front of the putter's head (Puett). It's the only way to develop a smooth, accurate putting stroke. The trick is to imagine you are sweeping or brushing the ball into the hole. Start with your hands slightly ahead of your putter so that it looks as if your hands are over the ball (Puett). Keeping your hands staggered in front of your putter's head through the entire swing will greatly enhance your control and accuracy.

Nice and Slow Does it

    Your backswing should be slow and steady so you can maintain proper alignment and distance control (Puett). A rapid takeaway will cause you to loose feeling for the club head, which will result in a forced, jerky stroke. Muscling a putt won't help anything. Take your time, relax and deliberately pull your club back during your takeaway. You'll be surprised how much better you'll put when you take your time and savor every second of your backswing.

Why are you so Uptight?

    Relax. Loosen your grip. Take a deep breath. Being uptight will only hurt your putting stroke. If you loosen up, your body will be able to flow through the motions, which will eliminate compensations and inconsistencies (Schempp). Once relaxed, you'll be able to keep your putter online and roll the ball rather than whacking it sporadically. The smooth roll will go straighter and have consistent distance. On top of it all, relaxing will reduce your blood pressure, which helps you live longer. What's not to love?

    Golf Putting can be perplexing. How can something so simple seem so difficult? Well, putting doesn't have to be hard. If you apply those tips to your short game, you'll have a much easier time sinking the short ones and long ones. A few minor adjustments can make all the difference in the world.


Hung, George K., and Jani Macari Pallis. Biomedical Engineering Principles in Sports. (New York: Plenum Publishers, 2004), 75-94.

Puett, Barbara and Jim Apfelbaum. A Woman's Own Golf Book. (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1999), 2-15.

Schempp, Paul G, and Peter Mattsson. Golf: Steps to Success. (Illinois: Human Kinetics Publishers, Inc., 2005), 1-5.