3 ways to accomplish your best putting season yet

Putting practice is often overlooked by many amateurs, so GOLF Teacher to Watch Adam Smith shares 3 steps to make it fun and see success

Putting practice is often overlooked, but here are 3 steps to make it fun (and see improvements!).

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Putting practice isn’t always the most fun exercise, as many amateurs just want to grab the driver and try hitting bombs off the tee. But if you really want to shave strokes off your scorecard in 2024, you’ll start to incorporate more practice time with the flat stick.

If you watch any golf on TV, each of the world’s best players can hit nearly every shot under the sun, putting the ball anywhere they want to. The difference between winning and just placing in a tournament, though? Success in putting.

In order to see more gains in your scores, it requires having touch on the greens. By doing this, you’ll eliminate three-putting, and you’ll have a strategy for every putt from within 10 feet. That way, once you’re on the green, you can get the ball in the hole with fewer putts.

So my advice is to spend as much time on your putting practice as you do on your full swing. And to get you started on your journey towards becoming a sniper on the greens, follow these three easy steps.

1. Take a putting lesson from a local PGA golf professional

There’s a decent chance that many of you reading this have taken lots of lessons from a local golf pro on the full swing, so why not get into the habit of seeking advice from a pro on important putting techniques?

Things like grip, stance, posture, ball position; these are all things that can be evaluated during a putting lesson.

With a little help from a putting expert, you can master your short game stroke and reap the benefits on the course.

2. Always practice putting first

As I mentioned earlier, everyone loves to “grip it and rip it” with their driver. In fact, I’d bet 90% of amateur players pull that club out first immediately after arriving at the practice facility.

It’s time to rethink that strategy.

Instead of shuffling through your bag for other clubs, just snag the putter and walk straight to the practice green, prioritizing putting practice over everything else.

3. Practice fun and productive putting drills

Most people find it way more exciting to hit full swing shots on the range, then think they’ll refocus their energy on putting practice — only to ignore it completely because it just isn’t fun.

When you know the right drills, though, you can really enjoy practicing your putting.

I’ve written about some easy at-home putting drills before, and one of my favorites is the Ladder Drill.

Simply place one golf tee three feet from the cup, six feet from the cup, and nine feet from the cup, all on the same putting line. Then place three golf balls at each tee, and start your practice from the shortest distance.

Treat each distance as a “station,” making sure you don’t leave until sinking three in a row from each spot. Once you make all three nine-foot putts in a row, you’re finished.

This putting exercise will help you to get a feel for each distance on the putting green, with an added focus on your speed.

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