Struggling to putt straight? You're at the right place. We are here to guide you!
Putting straight is a must-have skill in golf. In fact, more than a skill, it's a basic requirement for enhancing the gaming skills.
However, not everyone is great at putting straight. It requires proper knowledge and a lot of practice to improve your putting. In this guide, we will share a step by step guide following which you can putt straight every time while you play.
Not just that, we will also share some practical tips and tricks for putting green. But don't worry, we will not talk technically and will keep it as simple and practical as we can. The guide is going to be easy to understand and simple to learn.
By following it, you'll definitely have more putts and added fun on the greens.
You don't need to buy new clubs or master pro strokes, all you need to do is learn from this guide and practice, practice, practice!!
So, without wasting any more time, let's begin!
Things You Need To Know Before Getting Started
There are two concepts which are very important for perfect alignment on the greens. These are :
- A coin that has a stripe on it
- A golf ball with a stripe
You can either draw these manually using a sharpie or use a commercial product for drawing the straight lines on the coin and ball.
Also, always draw with a permanent marker because temporary markers rub off easily.
6 Step To Putt Straight Every Time
Step 1: Look Around The Green
First things first, approach the green and have a look around to see the location of the hole with respect to your ball.
Now decide, whether it is downhill or uphill? Then find the answers to the following questions.
- Is the ball on a lower or higher tier of pin?
- Is the green uphill or downhill after you shave off the ball to the hole?
In case your putt is uphill, you're good and you can try to be more aggressive on your stroke. And if your putt is downhill, you need to practice hitting the ball in a softer way.
Step 2: Mark Your Ball And Quickly Guess A Line
Now, have a look at the green between the hole and the ball and guess a line. Be quick and don't worry, you don't need to be very accurate here as you'll be adjusting it twice later on.
Once you guessed the line, look at your putt. If it is right to left then mark the ball that has a stripe, using a permanent marker and make sure the stripe is pointed towards the right side of the hole.
Next, line the coin stripe up according to the line and the putt.
Now, pick up your ball and assess it. Check if it is properly aligned or not.
Step 3: Analyse The Green
Once you've marked your ball with the help of the striped coin, stand back and look around the green and look at the line your putt might be concerned with. At this stage, you might change your mind regarding the direction of the putt.
You can also ask your caddie for some advice or if you're experienced enough, make your own decisions. Once you've decided the line, move to the next step.
Step 4: Remark And Aim Your Ball
Now, comes the important part i.e remarking and aiming the ball.
For this, first look at the coin stripe pointing direction and then check the green between the hole and your ball. Decide the line on which you want to strike the ball. Cross check the coin line pointing direction - if it's not pointed, keep your ball down and pick up the coin again to find a new target.
A simple trick to do this is, find a blemish on the decided line and set the stripe of your coin on that point. Now, pick the ball and wait for your turn. When your turn comes, place the ball on the green and line up the ball's stripe with the stripe on the coin pointed at the decided target. Make sure that the stripe on your ball is perfectly aligned with the putting line.
You're almost done with the alignment!
Step 5: Practice The Strokes To Get An Idea About The Distance
Time to practice a few strokes. For this, stand a bit away from the ball so that you don't end up hitting it during your practice.
Look at the hole and swing your club back and forth to get an idea about the distance. And because you've already aligned the ball, you don't have to worry about the line alignment anymore.
All you need to focus on is the distance from the hole. Feel the pressure you need to use for hitting the ball past the hole.
At this time, think about the putt getting into the hole. This will give you an idea about the line and the curve you need for putting successfully. Just focus on the length of the stroke and your line before achieving the putt.
The feel you get will vary according to the distance to the hole and also the uphill/downhill. The best idea is to strike the practice green before the actual round. Hit some putts from different distances downhill and uphill to get a clear sense of the greens.
There is no shortcut or trick to get the feeling of the green, the only way to get it is by practice.
Step 6: Putt The Ball
Now the most fun part that you've been waiting for.
We can assume that you've now fixed your line, got a feel of the green, aligned with the distance of the hole and practiced some putting strokes. You're now ready to hit your final putt but wait! Don't be so quick!
The secret is, pre-putt. It is very simple and clear, you have to first line the putter according to the line and the pointed direction on your golf ball and then follow the trick given below.
First of all, make one thing very clear in your mind that there is no fixed way of putting a golf ball. So, it doesn't matter if your putting stroke is inside to inside, open-to-closed, rounded or any other.
You have to go with the one you're most comfortable and confident with. It should be the one you are very good at. But keep in mind one thing, don't putt inside 10 feet, make this a rule of thumb!
Now, coming to the secret, don't lift your head and move your eyes from the putt. You only have to concentrate on the ball, the hole and the putting strategy. Never look at the ball going into the cup inside 10 feet, just hear the sound!
So, this was all about how to putt straight every time. Now, let's talk a little about the other important things to strike off better every time. To begin with, we are sharing some points on head movement and setup.
Putting Tips on Body Parts
1. Head Movement
As we already discussed, you shouldn't move your head even slightly throughout the putting stroke. Keep your eyes laser-focused on the ball, don't ever try to look at the putt going past the hole.
While it may sound very simple, it is a bit tricky to follow. What actually happens is, after you hit the course, the unexpected anxiety from nowhere takes over and you end up looking at the ball before even hitting it.
This is the most common reason behind missing the short putts. If you keep doing this, you'll never be able to putt straight no matter how much you try.
So, make it very clear, NEVER move your head and eyes, be very FOCUSED!
We suggest you to stand with either closed or open stance and swing your putter as per your likes and set the ball on the right path. But don't lift your head at any cost.
Keep your left eye straight on the ball as directly as you can. Although there is no rocket science behind it, this makes it a bit easier to look at the line while putting. If you don't keep your eyes focused, it will be difficult to look at the putting line.
We suggest putting your hands a bit ahead of the ball. It will make a perfect position by leaning the shaft forward.
Again, there is no science so play at your convenience. Most of the players get amazing results while putting their hands 6 inches ahead of the ball.
So, it's a good idea to see if it works for you or not.
This makes the ball roll forward without any backspin. This also prevents the ball from. skidding and bouncing on the green. Generally, when the ball skids, it becomes very difficult to have the control over the putt.
4. Shoulders, Legs And Arms
At the time of putting, you should only move your arms and shoulders. You should never move your head, eyes and wrist.
Keep your head still and eyes directed on the place at which your ball is resting before you strike it.
To prevent the wrist movements, try to have a tight grip on your putter. For this, your putter should be of great quality, it shouldn't be flimsy.
Finally, your legs should be at one place. Don't move or transfer weight on to them.
5 Effective Putting Tips For Golfers
1. Always Follow Through And Hold
The most common mistakes made by almost all the golfers are moving their heads and eyes while trying to putt and just after hitting the ball.
Know that the putting movement comes through your arms and shoulders and your other body parts should be kept still.
Once you've hit the ball, follow through and hold the same position till the end. At this time, you can determine your alignment.
If your putter face is directed right at the target, you can sigh in relief as you're good. But if you're not certain then reset your target and hit again.
2. Consistency Is The Key
If you ask for a single putting tip, it will be practicing more. If you can't practice consistently, forget about this game,you're not going to learn and improve.
So, before you make your mind for playing golf and putting straight, prepare a routine and start practicing as much as you can. This will help you in creating a calm mindset and building confidence.
3. Keep Changing Your Practice Shots
While practising hard is the key, don't keep on practising only one shot. For better results, always keep varying your putting shorts. Practice ahead of the single straight line or 20 foot putts. We are not saying this is a bad practice but it will not help you in putting the actual shots in your golf tournament.
A good idea is to shoot from an uneven surface or from farther distances to practice the variations.
Basically, keep incorporating new hurdles and challenges in your practice sessions. This will keep your gaming level up a notch and you'll be able to putt with great ease in your final tournament.
4. Keep Your Eyes Closed
Yes, you've read it right!
While it may sound a bit weird, this is what you should practice putting straight with more accuracy.
Generally, the pro golfers have a great sense of the green terrain and the distance surrounding them. If you want to be like them, then practise while closing your eyes.
Begin with a straight putt near the hole and try some practice shots with your open eyes. Now, shut your eyes and see if you can strike the putt. This will incorporate the much needed challenge in your practice which will ultimately improve your game.
Keep practicing this technique until you get success at making putts from different distances while keeping your eyes shut. This will help you to determine how hard you need to hit the ball from various distances.
5. Don't Forget to Enjoy The Game
Last but not the least, enjoy your game!!
After struggling with their game and constantly failing at shots, people become very frustrated. They tend to forget that they're playing for fun.
Don't take the game this way. The main reason for playing golf is enjoying your time and quality time. So, keep practising and keep learning, you'll automatically get better with time.
Don't let a bad game affect you and make you dislike the game. Practice and play with your friends and enjoy to the fullest.
A Quick Revision On Putting Straight Every Time
Why is it important to putt straight? So, putting straight is the basic skill to become a better putter.
Next thing is targeting and rolling your ball from the right distance.
What Should Be Your Expectations?
The main issue with the straight putt is the clubber always expects the ball to pass through the hole. This creates a lot of pressure and anxiety which is often the reason behind the missed shots.
Generally, putting uphill is easy as compared to the downhill. You can stroke the ball in a hard way and this eliminates the chances of your ball bouncing back or skidding. In case of downhill, try to hit the ball at a slower pace and in a softer manner.
How Should You Practice Straight Putting?
To practice straight putting, first place a tee peg upside down on the lounge carpet and from about 6 inches putt to shove it off. This is the ideal distance for putting and it's often easy.
Once you get perfect at this distance, you can go ahead on increasing the distance little by little to increase your level.
When you keep doing this, there will come a point where you will find it hard to strike over the tee peg. This is where you need to stop increasing the distance and practice with more consistency.
Using The Carpet
Generally, the inability to hit the straight putt comes from the wrong aim. So, you need to set the right aim as the first thing. To do this, draw a straight line using chalk on the carpet and draw another line at 90 degrees on which you can align the face of your putter.
You can now put the tee peg in this line and the putter face on the right angle you've drawn. This will make straight putting much easier.
Using The Rail
Now, obviously, a carpet will work for temporary practice, so consider investing in the rail which is a great putting aid.
You can use a wooden or a metal yardstick at a push. Further, make sure that the rail is level with the surface using the bubble level.
Next, your objective should be to see how many times you can roll your ball at the length of rail without making it slipping sideways.
Once you get perfect and achieve many successful attempts, your chances for successful putt will also increase.
A majority of golfers use a target line as the imaginary spot for practicing their shot and then try to move their ball to this spot in the direction of the hole. This is basically an easier way to practice the putts without getting into the technicality.
Moreover, here is a simple suggestion, practice straight putting on a putting green as it is more productive as compared to the other greens.
Always practice on a surface you're familiar with and from where you can get true feedback. You can also practice indoors, it is simpler and more effective.
Whether you're a newbie or an experienced golfer, you can always follow the below mentioned putting tips to have great results and added fun.
Other Related Golf Putting FAQ
1. How Can I Make More Short Putts?
The secret tip to make more short putts is to be more aggressive and take fewer breaks. Shorts putts are a bit tricky.
Most of the players get frustrated just after trying a few shorts. It is actually very frustrating to get the ball within 4 feet for a par and then your anxiety takes over and your focus shifts on the ball even before hitting it. This is exactly how you miss it.
Don't worry about it any more. Here we are sharing some quick fixes to this problem. The technique we are sharing requires a lot of practice. So, be very consistent and practice as much as you can.
2. How To Fix 1 Foot Putts
Target the center of the cup and hit it as hard as you can without moving or lifting your head even slightly. This is the best way to hit the 1 foot putts. Most of the people fail here, they lift their head and lose all the focus which results in a softer short.
3. How To Fix More Than One Foot Putts
In most of the cases, the best idea is to target the spot inside the cup. We suggest you not to go ahead right or left of the line of putt. Then, hit the putt with full power so that it strikes the cup and prevents the shot from missing. Don't try to trickle the ball into the cup, instead strike at the back of the cup.
4. How Can I Stroke A Short Putt
The good idea is to use a long follow-through and a minimal back swing and be aggressive on the putts. In simple words, keep your follow-through longer than the back-stroke. And don't forget to keep your head focused and wait for the move.
Hit hard on the ground and once you're done practicing, bring your skill into action.
Putting a ball straight is not as difficult as it sounds.
All you need to do is practice the right shorts while following certain simple rules.
Follow the above mentioned tips and tricks and you'll be surely able to make more straight putts every single time.