Do you really want to win at golf?
Who doesn’t. Then you have to learn to putt! The secret to winning at golf is learning to putt well. It’s that simple.
Sinking more putts is the fastest way to lower your golf score, lower your handicap, and win more rounds of golf. But — and this is the hard part — it is also one of the most difficult parts of your golf game, and one of the most boring to practice. That’s why most golfers avoid it.
When I go to the practice area at my local golf club, I see all these golfers lined up at the driving range, hitting buckets of balls, trying to hit a ball out to the 250 or 300 yard mark. They struggle doing it, hours at a stretch. At the same time, the practice putting green which is just a few yards off to the left of the driving range is nearly empty. Maybe one or two golfers will test a putt or two before heading out for a round of golf. But very few.
In a typical round of golf you will have your driver in your hands about 14 times. (On the par 3’s most golfers will use another club.) But you will have your putter in your hand a minimum of 18 times, and more than likely between 30 and 36 times, if you 2-putt most holes.
So it makes sense to practice putting at least as much as you practice hitting those “big dog” drivers and woods. I’m sure you’ve heard the expression “the money’s in the short game.” It’s true. And putting is a critical part of the short game. Learn to putt and you will win.
For the next few posts, GolfGurls is going to focus on bringing you some great tips and drills to help you practice and improve your putting. We’ve done the research and think these tips will really help you sink more putts and win more rounds. – So let’s begin.
Tip #1: Read The Greens Before You Play – Volumes have been written on this subject alone. (For example:
) Reading a green is one of the most difficult parts of learning to putt well. Most pros have a caddie who is familiar with every nuanced slope on a golf course to help them. The recreational golfer has to rely on his or her own skill to gauge the slope, the undulations in the surface, whether the grass is fast or slow, the angle of the sun and how it affects the speed of the green.
The first tip is to always go to the practice green and hit at least a dozen balls BEFORE you play a round of golf. The practice green’s grass is the same as that used on the course. If the practice surface is fast, the greens will be fast on the course. If slow, the course greens will be slow.
If you think you’ll figure this all out while you are playing the first hole, you are mistaken, and it will cost you strokes. Why take a chance? Get to the golf course at least 15 minutes early, and test the greens before you head out. The knowledge you gain will go a long way to making those first few holes a lot easier to play and give you lower scores. Guaranteed.
Do you think it’s a good idea to hit the practice green before you play a round of golf? What’s your approach to putting? Add your comment in the space below.