Want to dial in your stroke? This dollar bill putting drill is absolute money

GOLF Teacher to Watch Derek Deminsky shares a fun dollar bill putting drill that helps improve your distance control on the greens

With a simple dollar bill, you can become an expert at distance control on the green.

Images via Derek Deminsky

Welcome to Shaving Strokes, a GOLF.com series in which we’re sharing improvements, learnings and takeaways from amateur golfers just like you — including some of the speed bumps and challenges they faced along the way.

One of my favorite things about golf practice is that you can use the most common products or devices to improve your game. From exercise balls to a broken tee to the edge of your couch, each one of these can serve a purpose in order to shave strokes off your scorecard.

While most golfers typically prefer to use these things to help fix their full swing — improving their aim and alignment, posture, or ball contact — every golfer probably knows by now that improved putting is the way to instantly score lower.

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As I’ve said millions of times (OK, maybe not that much), putting is the great equalizer in the game of golf. When you’re hot, you can have your best rounds ever — and save yourself from any errant tee shots or mishits with your irons. But when the flat stick is ice cold, it can be a humbling reminder about just how difficult the game can be; even if you bomb it off the tee and hit every fairway.

To become a sniper on the putting surface means mastering your distance control — and one way to practice this is by using a simple dollar bill (seriously!).

Below, GOLF Teacher to Watch Derek Deminsky explains how using a good ol’ George Washington can be the key to earning your keep on the putting surface, helping you build the perfect stroke.

2 ways to practice this dollar bill putting drill

So what’s the point of this dollar bill putting drill? According to Deminsky, it’s to change your mentality with the putter and avoid accepting mediocrity.

“With this dollar bill drill, the task is clearly defined, as you’re trying to stop the ball on the dollar and not roll it over or past it,” he tells me. “I find many players having a ‘never up, never in’ mentality, which leads to too many 3-putts.

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“The player tries to avoid leaving it short, but instead, often blasts it past the hole; which adds unnecessary strokes.”

Deminsky says that this putting drill is the ideal way to master distance control, and provides an easy visual for you to make putting simpler.

“By getting good at stopping it on the dollar, you can really hone your distance,” he adds. “So when you play on the course, you can picture the dollar one foot behind the hole; or however past the hole that you desire to help your distance control.”

Here are two ways to use a dollar bill to improve your putting.

Setting it up

Take a dollar bill and pin it down to the ground (you can use tees or small pins to do that). Pin it in such a way that the ball has the most space to stop on the money. The picture below is an example of how it should look.

Here’s how the dollar bill should be pinned down. Derek Deminsky

Now that you know how the dollar bill should be set up, Deminsky shares two different ways to practice with this putting drill.

Group practice: The money game

Take turns picking the distance, with everyone hitting one putt from that spot. After each player has a turn, mark your golf ball so that the area stays clear for all players. The winner is the player who earns five points first.

If you’re the player who gets closest to the money, you get one point. If you stop it on the money, you get three points — and get to keep the money!

Individual practice

When practicing this putting drill on your own, hit five putts: one each from 10 feet, 20 feet, 30 feet, 40 feet, and 50 feet — but you must randomize each shot.

For each putt you hit, the goal should be to get your ball within 10 percent proximity to the money. So from 30 feet, we want to be within three feet of the dollar, and from 50 feet, we want it to be five feet; and so on.

Deminsky demonstrates how this putting drill can be practiced on your own. Derek Deminsky

Train until you’re able to hit all five putts in a row within that 10 percent distance. Once you accomplish that, move the dollar around to keep things fresh, giving you varying speeds and slopes to master.

Adds Deminsky, “Anytime we can work on making our practice more course-like and competitive, I’m all for it.”

By regularly practicing this putting drill, you’ll kiss 3-putts goodbye, and actually start to give yourself a chance on longer putts that could result in birdies or pars.

Putting Mirror

We have yet to find a good putter who sets up differently each time. Call us old-fashioned, but we believe the setup, stroke, and start line must stay consistent. That’s why we developed the Short Game Gains Putting Mirror. This detailed mirror helps you to check your alignment, confirm that your stroke is on the right path, and help you start every putt on your intended line. Staying consistent is what the best players do- so why not bring that stability into your own putting routine?   The SGG putting mirror also comes with a metal protective storage case.   A few SGG putting mirror features: eye line alignment shoulder alignment swing path distance from ball width of stance ball position center contact starting ball on line
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