5 easy putting fixes when you’ve lost your confidence on the greens

Lacking confidence with your putter? Here's how to get it back.


It happens to every golfer, even to the pros: You miss a few putts, have back-to-back three-jacks or miss a straightforward 5-footer to lose a match and your confidence goes. Sometimes it can take only a few holes to get your mojo back, but in more dire cases, it can a take a few rounds.

Take heart!

Here are a few ways to quickly regain your confidence on the greens:

1. Stay still

One of the most common causes of putting woes is too much movement, whether in your knees or torso and head. This can make it very difficult to control both distance and direction. A good general rule is if your putter is moving, your head should not be stroke, then look.

This can feel unusual and anti-human nature. Watch the Tour players. They are almost all such great examples of how to stay still over a putt.

2. Putt with your feet together

Both too-much movement and proper shoulder alignment can be mitigated by hitting a few putts with your feet together. Ball position is a direct contributor to the alignment of your shoulder and forearm lines, which largely dictate how your body lines aim.

For example, if your ball position is too far forward in your stance, this would make your shoulder line aim too far left for a right-handed golfer. This path would cause you to pull putts as well as potentially cut putts due to the path, making it difficult to control distance and direction.

If you are struggling, this adjustment may be all it takes to improve your alignment as well as keep your body still.

3. Walk your line to stealthily pace your putt

One of the keys to being a good putter is controlling distance so that your first putt settles in tap-in range. Often having a true sense of the distance of the putt or the uphill or downhill can be difficult to tell from back by your ball.

As you walk from the pin toward your ball, count your steps to give you a sense for the length of your putt. One large step typically equates to about three feet. Not only will this give you a sense of the distance but also the degree of tilt that could make the putt curve more or play longer for uphill putts or shorter for downhill putts.

By having a true sense of the length of the putt and how long it will play, this data will you adjust the length of your stroke to better control distance.

4. Make a change!

If you are a decent putter and you run into a slump, simply changing something like your putter can be enough to make a difference. I try different putters, but often I end up right back with the same style that I prefer. You will know it when you have the right putter. It just seems so much easier to get the ball to roll where you are aiming, and it just feels right.

Swapping out putters is also a great way to protect your confidence and ego: It must be my putter’s fault, not mine!

You may also want to consider the way you hold the putter. I might change my grip to left hand low once in a while, just to get a different feel and to change my momentum if I don’t like what I am seeing.

5. Invest in a green-reading tool

If you have a hard time seeing the tilts of the green, a green-reading map can be an invaluable resource. We’ve seen the pros use these on Tour for years, but recently, GolfLogix has launched its own green maps, making it easier than ever for amateur golfers to acquire this tool for their home course. (Ed note: GolfLogix and GOLF.com are affiliates of 8AM Golf.)

These custom printed green books contain detailed 3-D imagery and are available for over 14,000 courses and include three views of every hole. Quick view heat maps outline the undulations, and easy to see arrows guide your approach strategy and help you read every putt perfectly.

We’ve linked it below for your convenience!

Green Book by Golf Logix

These custom-printed green books contain detailed 3-D imagery and are available for over 14,000 courses. These guides include three views of every hole. Quick-view heat maps outline the undulations and easy-to-see arrows help the golfer to see where to properly approach the green and gives detailed information to help read every putt.

(GolfLogix and GOLF.com are operated by the same holding company, 8AM Golf.)

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