Happy New Year! I can’t believe another year has gone … it’s amazing how fast time flies! What are your new year’s resolutions? I encourage you to reach out to me with your goals for the year, so we can talk about ways to reach those goals. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
To start 2023 off, I am going through some of my favorite drills and training aids to help shave strokes on the putting green. For the first drill, you will need two small circular furniture stoppers. Set up the furniture stoppers by placing your putter head on the ground with a golf ball in the center of the clubface; from here, put one stopper on each side of the ball on the clubface (they should be on the heel and toe of the clubface). This drill is to ensure you hit the center of the putter face. When you putt balls with the stoppers on, if you miss the center of the clubface you will hit the stopper and the ball will shoot off to the right or left, depending on which stopper you hit.
For the second drill, you will need the “Dave Pelz Putting Tutor.” To set up this drill, aim your “Putting Tutor” at your intended line. From here. start by placing the marbles on the two widest dimples on the training aid, and as you get consistent in putting through the gate between the marbles, move them to the narrower dimples to make the gate smaller. I love this training aid because it helps with everything: green reading, aim, stroke, starting the ball online and having a square clubface at impact. I recommend doing this drill from nine feet and in. These are not paid ads, just training aids I love to use with students that have helped tremendously.
Once you have practiced with “The Putting Tutor,” grab a coin or sticky note and hit some putts from 15 feet and in by placing the coin or sticky note halfway between the ball and the hole on your intended line. This is the spot you want to aim at and hit when you hit your putt. This is to work on green reading, pay attention when you do this drill if you tend to miss your spot on the low side or high side.
For the last drill, which I would say is arguably the most important, you will need a metronome, or you can download a free metronome on your phone on the app store. The one I like to use is called “MetroTimer.” Tempo is so important for speed control and starting the ball on your intended line; so often tempo is uneven back and through, causing students to have their putter face open or closed at impact and resulting in inconsistencies in their starting line and speed. For a starting point, begin with the metronome set between 70-72 and hit putts from 10 feet (try to have the same timing as the beat of the metronome). Pay attention if the rhythm feels too fast or too slow to be consistent and adjust the tempo to the number where you can most consistently stay on beat. Once you can consistently stay on beat from 10 feet and in, move further back keeping the same rhythm, just taking a longer stroke back and through.