Closing the Deal
You've finally made it to the green, and the hole is a mere few feet away. Now, you just need to get the ball there.
Start by adjusting your grip. You no longer need the interlocking grip you use to drive. Instead, place your thumbs and index fingers on the shaft of your club so that you can better sense the conditions of your swing. Next, adjust your stance. Stand closer to the ball than you do for a drive. Instead of distributing your weight evenly, you'll want most of your weight, about seventy-five percent, on your forward foot. Finally, keeping your arms straight and parallel to each other, control your swing with small shoulder movements.
PGA professional Joe Beck recommends two drills to improve your putting game. In both instances, determine how hard you'll need to hit the ball and how to adjust for any breaks or elevation changes in the lay of the land before you take your shot.
- Practice long: In turn, putt three balls toward a hole that is at least 25 feet (7.62 meters) away. As you swing, keep your eyes on the hole, not the ball. This helps you focus on the target and learn to judge distance.
- Practice short: Putt three balls toward a hole that is no more than 6 feet (1.8 meters) away. Instead of looking at the target, keep your eyes on the ball and listen for it to fall into the hole. This teaches you to trust your instincts.