How To Choose The Perfect Putter
As CoachUp has written before, many lower level golfers believe that the biggest driver is the best club in your bag, but, often enough, that couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, your most important club might also double as the most maligned one as well. Truthfully, however, you’ll never consistently put yourself in a position to succeed without a great putting game. And in order to have a great putting game, you need to be comfortable with your putter. It seems particularly simple in concept, but rather remarkably under-appreciated in recent memory. Honestly, it’s very similar to trying to play baseball with a football or biking with the seat up too high -- it just doesn’t make very much sense. Yet, golfers around of the world still play with incorrect, uncomfortable putters every day. In an attempt to help sway the doubters out there, CoachUp has put together a list of helpful tips while picking out your next putter.
The Dream Team
No other club gets the workout that the putter does and unless you hit a miracle chip or approach shot, you'll factually have to use your putter on every hole. Think of it this way, if a 275-yard drive counts for as many strokes as a one foot putt does, surely it’s not farfetched to concede that the one-foot putt is far more critical, right? The drive will, inevitably, be hit again, but golfers at every level openly loathe having to re-hit a one-foot tap-in. The best option of them all? A custom putter. While most players today are wisely looking more and more towards custom-fit clubs, there still resistance to it. How many athletes do you know that have a custom-fit driver with a high quality, spine-aligned shaft but won’t move past the generally basic putter bought off the rack? Unfortunately, the answer may astound you!
You Da Real MVP
If you explore putter fitting, what should you be looking for? First off, the golfer should be in a stance that allows them to optimally preform. The athletic posture will feel balance move up into the quadriceps, almost echoing the feel of someone shooting a free throw line in basketball. This position moves the weight forward on the feet and anchors the athlete to the surface where wind and slope will have less effect on execution. It will result in more knee bend for most and, in this regard, lowers the player’s overall height. With arms in a comfortable, relaxed position, the true length of a putter is much shorter than previously thought.
Length isn’t the only important thing to consider while pursuing a comfortable putter! It'll be the head shape and hosel offset that helps to aim best in the long run. Try using a laser placed squarely against the putter’s face and aimed at a target ten feet away. Most typically, this will illuminate the correct configuration for you. Generally, you’ll want a nice, level aim without sacrificing a comfortable, repeatable stance. Eventually, your subconscious will begin to correct any former tendencies to overcome faulty aim from the past.
We Talkin’ About Practice?
Once you’ve found the true, ideal fit of the putter, you can analyze the natural motion of your stroke. Like a full swing, your emphasis should always be on fundamentals and focused practice. Athletes wishing to advance to higher levels must use concentrated routines on the practice green just as they would on the range. Of course, just like anything great in sports and life, you must practice, practice, practice in order to truly master your craft! It won’t matter if you’re using a generic putter or a specifically-tailored club, if you don’t get comfortable and practice with it, it won’t matter. Get out on the course and find out what works and what doesn’t. Try to discern your perfect stance height or what type of head shape is ideal for you. Golf is an ever-evolving sport and you can either grow with your game or get left in the dust. Having a good putter fit is, quite possibly, more important than any other club in the bag.
(Related: Read about some handy putting tips here.)
In the end, putting will never be boiled down to a complete science, there are just too many factors and scenarios at play. But you can start off on the right foot by playing with the right putter and putting in an absurd amount of time on the course. Only playing consistently with it will reveal a putter's true technique and method, so get to it! Still frustrated? Try booking up one of CoachUp’s private trainers in order to help you expand your game. We have coaches all over the country waiting to pass down their experience and knowledge to the next generation, so what are you waiting for?